c1885 mfrd. LETTERED US CAVALRY Model COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY Revolver SAA
Inspected by David F. Clark and Rinaldo A Carr; Kopec Letter
Here we present an antique Colt Single Action Army Revolver, manufactured in 1885 in Hartford, Connecticu. Per the factory archive letter, it was 1 of a 200 gun shipment to the Government Inspectors at the Colt Plant. Also includes a thorough letter from John Kopec. Though Colt enjoyed the largest contracts of any handgun maker during the American Civil War, it had to rely on its array of percussion fired revolvers, namely the 1860 Army until the Smith & Wesson owned Rollin White Patent expired in 1869. This enabled them to begin making revolvers with completely bored through cylinder chambers in order to utilize modern metallic cartridge ammunition in the most effective manner. In 1869, Colt’s began development of a suitable cartridge revolver in earnest, first coming out with a number of conversions for their percussion lines, until 1872 when they debuted what was to become the Colt Model 1873 Single Action Army in the 1872 U.S. Trials. Needless to say, it won, and became the Army’s revolver of choice. It also became the sidearm of choice for many others like cowboys, guards, lawmen, crooks, shopkeepers and all manner of civilians.
This particular Colt Single Action Army Revolver features a 7-1/2 inch barrel and it was inspected by David F. Clark and Rinaldo A. Carr. The left side of the frame was stamped “U.S.” as the final acceptance mark. The top of the barrel is marked “COLT’S PT.F.A. MFG. CO. HARTFORD, CT. U.S.A.” The left side of the frame is marked with patent dates in the years 1871, 1872 and 1875. It has blade front and frame notch rear sights, fitted with a smooth one-piece walnut grip.
Government inspection marks can be viewed all over the revolver, including “P” proof marks on the barrel and cylinder, “DFC” for Sub-Ordnance Inspector David F. Clark on the cylinder, barrel, grips and frame, and “G” on the trigger guard and grip frame. RAC, for Rinaldo A. Carr is on the bottom of the grip. Single letter sub-inspector marks are also found throughout. The right grip has “DFC” in a rectangle, and the left grip looks to have the date of “1885” above an oblong circle with what looks like “FH” in the circle, for Captain Frank Heath. This revolver was from one of the final government contracts for Colt Single Action Army Cavalry Model revolvers over which Rinaldo A. Carr was the inspector. These revolvers saw the end of the Indian Wars as well as the Spanish American & Philippine American Wars. Many of these were sent back to the Armory to be refurbished, which included shortening the barrels and replacing worn parts.
The overall condition is very good. The action is strong and tight with all 4 clicks, all notches hold, cylinder indexes and locks up nicely. The barrel has been replaced and marked with the appropriate acceptance and proof marks. The bore is shiny bright with sharp rifling. The grip is an original but from a different gun that still bears the original cartouches. Numbers match though some of the numbers have been restamped.
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 7-1/2 inches.
Caliber: .45 Colt
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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