Colt Model 1849 Pocket .31 Cal Percussion Cap & Ball Revolver, 1857 Antique

SOLD FOR: $1701

LSB#: 220523JG011

Make: Colt

Model: 1849 Pocket

Serial Number: 138424

Year of Manufacture: 1857 (

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 “138424”. The marking on the butt appears to be stamped over a previous marking. The top of the loading lever is marked “8424”. The cylinder is marked “COLT’S PATENT / No 138424″ with a roll-engraved stagecoach scene. The left of the trigger guard is marked “G” on the flat. The bottom of the cylinder arbor is marked “8424”. The bottom of the wedge is marked “38424”. The backstrap inlet of the grip has “8424” hand-written. The left of the grip has had “J.H.G.” hand-carved.

Barrel Length: 6”, 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 scattered nicks and scratches with a small loss at the bottom-front corner on the right. THe finish is thinning at the bottom edges. There are no cracks. Overall, the grip is in Very Good condition as Antique.

Type of Finish: Blue, Case Color & Silver-Plated Brass

Finish Originality: Original

Bore Condition: The bore is gray and the rifling is well defined where not interrupted by erosion. There is light erosion and pitting scattered through the bore.

Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 20% of its metal finish. The steel parts have mostly worn to white or gone to a light patina with a few spots of finish remaining on the bottom of the barrel over the loading lever, on the outside of the cylinder and on the frame. Most of the remaining finish is silver plate on the bottom of the trigger guard and on portions of the grip frame which are covered by the grip when assembled. There is some scattered surface erosion, mostly on the barrel and some light nicks and scratches. The action shows operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. The markings range from clear to worn and incomplete. At least one of the nipples have been replaced, most show wear, but have unobstructed flash-holes. Overall, this revolver is in Very Good condition as Antique.

Mechanics: There is one chamber for which the cylinder does not properly advance when the hammer is pulled. Otherwise, the action functions correctly. The cylinder locks up with minor 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 1857, just a few years before the outbreak of the Civil War. Despite being a “pocket” model, it was offered with longer barrels and this example has a 6″ barrel. The serialized parts on this revolver match, though the serial marking on the butt appears to have been applied over a previous marking. It certainly looks like it has a story to tell and would make for a great display or conversation piece in a collection of early Colt revolvers. Please see our pictures and good luck!

Colt Model 1849 Pocket .31 Cal Percussion Cap & Ball Revolver, 1857 Antique
Colt Model 1849 Pocket .31 Cal Percussion Cap & Ball Revolver, 1857 Antique