Civil War-era Savage Revolving Firearms Navy 36 Percussion Revolver Antique
SOLD FOR: $1500
Make: Savage Revolving Fire-Arms Co.
Model: Navy Model
Year of Manufacture: Circa 1861-1865, Antique
Caliber: .36 Caliber
Action Type: Single-Action Ring Lever Cokced Percussion Revolver with a 6 Round Cylinder
Markings: The top-strap is marked “SAVAGE R.F.A. Co. MIDDLETOWN. CT. / H.S. NORTH PATENTED JUNE 17, 1856 / JANUARY 18, 1859, MAY 15, 1860”. The right side of the grip strap is marked “8044”.
Barrel Length: 7 1/8”, Octagonal
Sights/ Optics: There is a brass post fixed by the muzzle.
Stock Configuration & Condition/ Grip: The replacement grip panels are two-piece smooth wood. The grip panels have some light handling marks, nicks and scuffs. There is moderate wear around the screw-slots on the two grip panels and the washer on the right panel falls out when the grip is removed. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grip panels are in Good condition for aftermarket replacements.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is semi-bright with mostly sharp rifling. There is some light erosion in the bore and a notable patch of pitting near the muzzle.
Overall Condition: The revolver has no surviving finish. The gun’s metal surfaces are coated in light to moderate surface oxidation and the gun has taken a patina color. There are scattered light-moderate handling marks, nicks and scuffs. Notably, the nipples are deformed, there is a turn-line on the cylinder and there are some scattered patches of pitting around recesses. The marking on the top-strap is still clear. The screw-heads have tool-marks and remain serviceable. Overall, the pistol is in Good condition for an Antique.
Mechanics: This revolver has a unique ring-lever inside its heart shaped trigger guard, said lever brings the cylinder back while advancing the cylinder to the next chamber. While the lever is held back, the small trigger releases the hammer onto a nipple. The nipples are deformed, but the gun’s action remains functional. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance requirements.
Box Paperwork and Accessories: None.
Our Assessment: This is a Savage Revolving Fire-Arms Company manufactured Navy Revolver which was manufactured in the 1860s. The gun was produced from 1861 until sometime in the mid-1860s (there are conflicting accounts but it appears the gun’s manufacture ceased sometime before the Civil War ended). The gun saw widespread use by both the Union and Confederate armed forces during America’s bloodiest conflict . The gun proved unpopular with soldiers because it was overly complicated to operate compared to other revolvers and it was also chambered for the lower .36 “Navy” caliber instead of the more popular .44 “Army” caliber. The gun’s unique design was innovative but not suited to the rigors at the front. In more recent times historians and collectors have come to recognize the gun’s innovative design and it has proven a popular commodity on the Antique firearms market. It should also be noted that the Savage Revolving Fire-Arms Company was not a predecessor of the modern company Savage Arms Co., it seems to have gone under at some point during the epoch of the Civil War.
The gun has wear consistent with its age and deformed nipples, but it’s still well preserved for a Civil War-era handgun. The model was also sold commercially during the Civil and many examples, like this specimen, lack any military markings. This is a fascinating old revolver that fans of historical firearms will not want to miss out on. Good luck on your bid!