SOLD FOR : $3,510
Make: Jones of Cornhill, London
Model: Flintlock Pistol
Serial Number: None
Year of Manufacture: 1767 (as indicated by the date stamp on the Sterling silver trigger guard)
Caliber: .62 Caliber Ball
Action Type: Flintlock, Black Powder Muzzleloader
Markings: The lockplate is marked “Jones”. The top of the barrel is marked “CORNHILL” and “LONDON”. The barrel is marked with a Crown over “CP” proof, a Heart proof “IR” and a Crown over “V” proof. The sterling silver trigger guard is marked with an “I-K” maker’s mark, a London City Hallmark, a Crowned Leopard London Hallmark and an “M” 1767 date stamp.
Barrel Length: 8 7/8”
Sights / Optics: There are no provisions for sights on this pistol.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The one piece stock has a rounded grip as typical to flintlock pistols. A scallop shell design is carved into the stock behind the tang. Handling marks are visible on the stock and a crack emanates from the muzzle along the ramrod groove ending at the forward ramrod fitting. Another crack is visible at the rear of the lockplate. The rear barrel pin is absent and the right half of the forward barrel pin is missing. Three notable compression marks are visible on the right side of the forend. The finish is thick and buildup is visible in some of the protected areas, indicating that the stock has been refinished. A Sterling silver grip end cap in the shape of a grotesque face is screwed on to the grip end. The slot in the screw head forms the mouth with a London Hallmark and an “IK” maker’s mark on the corners. The headpiece is slightly bent away from the stock. The fit of the cap to the stock is very tight, the metal exhibits wear from age, is shiny and rates in Fine condition. The stock rates in about Good overall condition as antique.
Type of Finish: Blue with Sterling Silver Fittings
Finish Originality: All Original
Bore Condition: The smooth bore is rough and there is deep erosion in the bore.
Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 30% of its metal finish. Patches of blue which have developed a dark patina remain on the barrel with spots of surface erosion and handling marks. Two lateral lines are engraved across the barrel forward of the lockworks and a border is visible at the rear of the barrel. Sparse engraving is present, partially obscured by the condition of the barrel. The tang and tang screw head are engraved. Traces of engraving appear on the dogshead and other than the maker’s mark, the lockplate appears unadorned. The trigger guard, side plate and ramrod fittings are Sterling Silver. The tang of the trigger guard is in the shape of a scalloped clam shell upon a pedestal. A flower with in a rectangular border is engraved on the trigger guard bow and the rear of the trigger guard displays a Rectangle “IK” maker’s mark, a Lion London Sterling Silver hallmark, a Crowned Leopard London Hallmark and a Crested “M” 1767 date stamp. The trigger guard is in Fine condition as antique, showing comparatively mild evidence of use. The forward ramrod fitting is smooth Sterling Silver and sports raised ridges on each end. The rear fitting is similar, but also possesses a pointed tang which is engraved. The left sideplate is an intricately cast Sterling silver piece. The rear appendage has broken off, but four flags can be seen with what looks like a representation of London Bridge, perhaps a scroll, a leaf and a flat surface which may have held displayed a monogram at some point. The sideplate is in Very Good condition. The screw heads are mildly deformed. The markings are shallow and partially obscured. Overall, this handgun rates in nearing Excellent condition as an antique approaching 250 years of age.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly, but the sear is not crisp. The hammer will fall from the half-cock position. We did not fire this handgun.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: A wooden ramrod in Excellent condition is held in the proper fittings.
Our Assessment: It can be very difficult to date antique flintlock pistols, but in this case, the presence of Sterling silver fittings provided all the necessary information. A date stamp definitively places the manufacture of this pistol in 1767 and the London Hallmarks agree with the “LONDON” markings on the barrel. An “IK” maker’s mark appears on the trigger guard and the grotesque grip end cap, but we could not identify the craftsman with any certainty. The lockplate is marked “Jones” and there is no maker’s mark on the barrel, but “CORNHILL” identifies the area of London where Mr. Jones had his shoppe. This is a finely crafted firearm.It would have been quite expensive in the late 1700s and certainly would have been commissioned by a gentleman of means. It has survived 248 years very well. One appendage of the side plate is missing, but otherwise the Sterling Silver fittings exhibit relatively minor wear. Traces of the original finish remain on the barrel with the finish and bare metal having developed a dark patina. Signs of age are present but are fairly mild. The stock has been refinished and bears a few notable compression marks and two cracks, but visually, this pistol is quite spectacular. Consider that this pistol was manufactured in London before the American Revolution, was owned by a member of the Gentry and somehow made it across the Atlantic and finally to California and it becomes apparent that this pistol evokes an incredible history of its own.
SOLD FOR : $3,510