MEMPHIS TENESSEE Antique DERINGER Percussion POCKET Pistol Sold by FH CLARK
Southern, Antebellum Sidearm!
Here we present an antique Deringer Percussion Pocket Pistol, made circa the 1850s in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This example is marked “MANd FOR / F.H. Clark & Co. / MEMPHIS TENN.” F.H. Clark & Company of Memphis was one of just fifteen authorized agents for Henry Deringer selling his famous pocket pistols. While this firm sold the real deal, this is one of the period copies, which the company was also known to deal in.
Henry Deringer was a very successful Pennsylvanian gunsmith who started his own company in his early twenties, circa 1809. It was not until the 1850s that his prototypical “Deringer” percussion pistol became extremely popular. Once it did become popular, the basic design was copied in dozens of different shops. Not only was it copied, but Deringer’s good name was stamped on guns made by others, some of them not up to the quality standards of Deringer himself. The inventor was apparently very worried about protecting his good name, so he pursued and sued any of the counterfeiters that he could find and warned the buying public to beware of his spurious imitators.
The Civil War brought new technology to weapons and when sales of the Deringer pistol declined, Henry turned to the courts to defend his trademark. Suits were brought against several of the imitators, but it was his successful 1863-70 case against A. J. Plate that set patent infringement history. A District court awarded Deringer $1,770 in damages and issued a permanent injunction against Plate’s use of the Deringer trademark. On appeal the California supreme court upheld the verdict.
The overall condition is good. Strong action. The bore is in good shape for its age. Legible markings. Solid stock/grip. This example is lightly engraved with traditional floral designs.
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 3 inches.
Caliber: .48 Percussion
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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