Very rare Colt Model 1871-72 Open Top Single Action revolver s/n 3570, from the U.S. Cartridge Company Collection. Calibre .44 rimfire. Blued 7½ inch round barrel, cylinder, back-strap and trigger-guard, with case hardened frame and German silver front sight.
One-line block letter address and fixed rear sight, integral with the rear of the barrel. The right side of the barrel lug is mounted with an ejector housing, that has a half moon ejector rod head, engraved with a bull’s eye. The bottom of the barrel is stamped “#91”. The frame has the two-line Patent dates and a loading gate on the right side, with assembly number “421”. Six shot cylinder with Ormsby Naval battle scene roll marking. Complimented with one-piece walnut grips, that have three digits of a SN “848” in the back channel and “91” stamped on the left side of the grip. The top of the back-strap is stamped “U.S.C. Co.” which stands for the U.S. Cartridge Company Collection.
Only 7,000 of these scarce revolvers were produced in the period 1871-1873. These big bore cartridge revolvers, are the predecessor to the venerable Model 1873 Single Action revolver. They were immediately accepted by the buying public and saw extensive hard service on the American frontier, usually under extreme harsh conditions, with little or no maintenance. They are rarely found today, with high original finish.
Extremely fine plus, all matching except grip as noted. This grip has been place, since the late 1880’s when it became part of the U.S. Cartridge Company Collection. The barrel retains about 95% glossy original blue, with a series of very fine scratches and some minor flaking, with light muzzle edge wear. The ejector housing retains about 70% glossy original blue, with the outer radius a blue/brown patina. The frame retains brilliant case colours, moderately faded on the loading gate. The hammer retains bright case colours turned dark on the top edge. The cylinder is a grey / brown patina and shows about 98% sharp Ormsby Naval scene roll marking. The trigger-guard retains about 60% strong original blue, with the area inside the trigger bow a brown patina and flaking on the front strap. The back-strap retains bright blue at the top, with the back-strap and butt strap a blue/grey patina. The grip has tiny chipped toes and shows moderate wear edge wear, with nicks and scratches. It retains about 70-75% strong original varnish.
The mechanics are crisp with a brilliant shiny bore. A truly rare, high condition Colt Model 1871-72 Open Top six-shot revolver.