Colt SAA John Daggett
Historical Colt Single Action .44-40
Frontier Six Shooter
This Historical Colt SAA John Daggett revolver was Daggett’s personal side arm. He was an early California gold miner turned politician and a three term member of the Calif. Assembly elected in 1858, 1859 and 1880. After that, he was the 16th Lt. Governor of California from 1883-1887. Lastly, he was appointed by President Grover Cleveland to Superintendent of the U.S. Mint located in San Francisco in 1894.
He purchased the Black Bear Mine, in Siskiyou County, California in 1862. In addition, he held an interest in the Calico Mine in San Bernardino County, Calif. The Black Bear Mine was the largest producer of gold in California. The town of Calico Junction, near the Calico Mine, was re-named to “Daggett”. The town is still named Daggett to this day. All this information is documented and notarized by the gentleman who was given the gun by Daggett’s daughter, Hallie Daggett in 1955. Daggett’s life is also documented in “Gold in His Veins, The Story of John Daggett” by Richard Kelly and Nancy Oliver.
According to the factory letter (included) this Colt SAA was shipped to Montgomery Ward & Co. Chicago, Illinois on Dec. 16, 1892, one gun in shipment. In 1892 at the World’s Fair, Columbian Exposition in Chicago, Illinois, John Daggett was appointed to be the commissioner representing Siskiyou County, by the Governor of California. John was at the exposition in early 1893 to check out the California displays. Therefore, it would have been at this time that he purchased the Colt SAA from Montgomery Ward and Company in Chicago.
A Chinese worker was murdered due to racism issues at the Black Bear Mine. To stop the Irish miners from molesting the Chinese workers, John Daggett hired a gunfighter. Fortunately, it worked and the problems ceased. Due to these incidents, he may have special ordered the gun from Montgomery Ward as it was a “1 gun in shipment”. Or he saw the Colt Exhibit at the exhibition and decided it was time he was “well heeled” while at his mines.
Historical John Daggett Colt SAA
All the features of the Colt SAA are confirmed by the factory letter. The Colt SAA is a 44/40, 7 ½” barrel, blue and stocks are not listed. The gun is in overall very good condition. About 40% of the original blue has gone dull, but still bright in corners. In addition, the remainder has gone to a shiny metal – mostly on the barrel and ejector rod housing. The frame and hammer still show some muted case colors. There is some fine to medium pitting in spotty areas all over the gun, nothing serious.
The original hard rubber grips are in excellent condition. They show some minor wear but they fit perfectly. A roll stamped “Colt Frontier Six Shooter” is on the barrel and all other markings are good. All the numbers on the gun match, therefore all parts appear to be original. However, the cylinder pin screw head does show some buggering. Otherwise, the mechanics are excellent. As a result, it locks up tight and the bore is very good. The front sight is its full height. Lastly, the gun shows holster wear, especially at the muzzle on the left side.
Included with the gun and documentation is a copy of “Gold in His Veins”. Also included is a copy of “The Siskiyou Pioneer”, published in 1957 with excerpts written by Hallie and John Daggett.
A great memento of California history dating back to the discovery of gold and a prominent figure in Siskiyou County, California.
Clarks Antiques Firearms – Colt SAA John Daggett – Price $9,000.00