SOLD FOR: $1125
Model: 1849 Pocket
Serial Number: 163698
Year of Manufacture: 1860 (https://colt.com/serial-lookup)
Caliber: .31 Caliber Ball
Action Type: 5-Shot, Single Action Percussion Revolver
Markings: The top of the barrel is marked “ADDRESS SAML COLT / NEW YORK CITY”. The left side of the frame is marked “COLTS / PATENT”. The bottom of the barrel assembly, bottom of the frame, butt of the grip frame, and bottom of the trigger guard are each marked “163698”. The top of the loading lever is marked “3698”. The cylinder is marked “COLT’S PATENT / No 163698″ with a roll-engraved stagecoach scene. The left of the trigger guard is marked “V” on the front bow and “M” on the rear flat. The bottom of the cylinder arbor is marked “3698”. The wedge is marked “38986”. The backstrap inlet of the grip has “3698” hand-written.
Barrel Length: 5”, Octagonal
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a brass bead at the muzzle, the rear sight is a “V” notch in the hammer, visible when cocked.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grip is a one-piece smooth walnut. The grip has light handling wear with some scattered minor nicks and scratches. There is a more notable ding at the rear on the right side, near the top. The finish is thinning at the bottom edges with a spot of more notable wear at the bottom-rear corner on the right. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grip is in Fine condition as Antique.
Type of Finish: Blued, Case Color & Silver-Plated Brass
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is grya and the rifling is well defined. There is light-moderate erosion and pitting scattered through the bore.
Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 60% of its current metal finish. The forward portion of the barrel assembly has been polished bright with a little blue finish in the rear portion which has mostly gone to a light patina. The loading lever has a little case color on the side flats, stronger color on the top and the rod has mostly worn to white or gone to a light patina. The cylinder has gone to a mottled light patina with a notable bruise/ding in front of one nipple below the serial marking. The frame has some good case color on the side flats with some areas muted or gone to a light patina and the sides of the recoil shield worn to white. The steel parts have scattered nicks, scuffs and scratches including some tool marks at the screw heads and more notable marks around the wedge on the right of the barrel assembly. The grip frame has surprisingly strong silver finish, worn at edges and showing some discoloration in a few spots. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. The markings are generally clear, the stagecoach scene shows some wear. Overall, this revolver is in Fine condition as Antique.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The cylinder locks up with moderate play. The barrel has no play to the frame. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: None.
Our Assessment: This rather diminutive revolver, an older, yet smaller brother to the 36 caliber Model 1851 Navy, met with the largest sales unit volume in all of Colt’s percussion line. Indeed, no other percussion revolver made in America could match “The 1849” production record. Made from 1850 through 1873, the total manufactured was in excess of 325,000 in America, plus approximately 11,000 in London. Popular as a defense weapon, many thousands were sold in Western America to pioneer families. Soldiers appreciated the compact little pistols, and photographs of Civil War troops frequently show a sprinkling of the Model 1849 tucked into belts or in holsters. This 1849 was made in 1860, right at the outbreak of the Civil War. Despite being a “pocket” model, it was offered with longer barrels and this example has a 5″ barrel. Most serialized parts on this revolver match, though the wedge has been replaced. It retains much more of its metal finish than most examples we have seen, especially the silver plate on its grip frame. This is perfor for display as a conversation piece or in a collection of early Colt revolvers. Please see our pictures and good luck!