SOLD FOR:$ 910.00
Model: Chamelot & Delvigne Modele 1874 Revolver d’Officer
Serial Number: 29
Year of Manufacture: 1874-1892 (The French made revolvers stopped production in 1887, but this Belgian made pistol may have been built after that. The proof mark on the cylinder shows it was made prior to 1893).
Action Type: Single/Double Action Revolver with Side Loading Cylinder
Markings: The bottom of the grip frame is marked “7111”. The left side of the octagonal part of the barrel is marked “INDN”, “CHAMELOT / & / DELVIGNE” and “BTEE”. The lower left shoulder of the barrel and the left side of the frame at the barrel are marked with a “* / S”. The underside of the barrel is marked “23 / .” under the cylinder pin and “1” in front of the cylinder pin. The rear face of the cylinder is marked with an “E / LG / *” Liege proof as used prior to 1893, “* / S” and “29.”. The front face of the cylinder is marked “JF” and “DJ” and the right front face of the recoil shield is marked “29.”. The inside surface of the left sideplate is marked “29.”. The left side of the grip frame along the backstrap is marked “G. BECKERS” and in the lower center with “JB” and “GH” (we think this was just a poorly stamped “GR”). The insides of both grip panels are marked “29 / .”.
Barrel Length: The barrel is half round and half octagon, and is 4 3/8” in length.
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a tall blade fixed to an arched base which is fixed to the barrel. The sight appears as a slightly oblong bead when viewed from the rear. The rear sight is a “V” groove at the rear of the top strap.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are checkered ebony. The left grip is held in place by the left sideplate and the right grip with a grip screw. The left grip has a hairline crack at the top of the grip and a long crack at the bottom of the grip that runs about half the length of the grip. There is also a small surface chip out of the left grip at the bottom of the grip. The checkering shows light wear with moderate to heavy wear along the tops and bottoms of the grips. There are no mars in the grips but there are three tiny marks in the smooth border at the top of the right grip. The left grip rates in about Fair to Good condition while the right grip is in about Fine condition.
Type of Finish: The finish on the barrel, cylinder and frame is blued. The trigger, hammer, loading gate, ejector and small internal pieces have a straw colored finish.
Finish Originality: The finish appears original.
Bore Condition: The bore is bright and the rifling is sharp. There is no erosion in the bore, and no signs that we saw that this revolver was ever fired.
Overall Condition: This revolver retains about 82% of its metal finish. There is pinprick surface erosion on the bottom of the butt, backstrap and front strap, with a tiny spot on the right side of the frame above the rear of the trigger guard and a light dusting of erosion on the left sideplate. There is thinning on the front edge of the barrel and the front edges of the frame. There are a few tiny marks through the finish on the left lower shoulder of the barrel at the front of the cylinder pin and a tiny ding in the left front edge of the frame. The cylinder pin, ejector rod, loading gate, sideplate latch and the lanyard ring are all developing a plum colored patina. The grip screw is disfigured and there are faint marks from a screwdriver in the cylinder release catch screw. There are wear marks in the serrations at the front of the sideplate latch, light wear in the loading gate checkering and the hammer checkering is sharp. The markings are clear except for the serial numbers marked which were poorly stamped, or else the die was worn (the “9” sometimes looks like a “3”). Overall, this revolver rates in about Fine condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. We did not fire this handgun.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: The revolver comes with a lanyard ring on the bottom of the butt. It comes with a reddish-brown soft leather top flap holster. The holster is made from a single piece of leather that is folded over at the front and sewn along the back edge, with the back of the holster folded over to the front to form the flap. The flap has a short strap riveted to it, which secures the flap to a steel stud on the outside surface of the holster. There is an ammunition pouch sewn to the outside of the holster with a separate flap sewn to the top edge of the holster. There is a single wide belt loop sewn to the back of the holster with a rectangular D ring riveted to the holster on each side of the loop for fastening to a harness. The top flap is cracked at the top, and repaired with a thin piece of leather glued across the entire width of the flap on its inside surface. The holster shows several handling marks and scrapes in its finish, along with light oil staining. The stitching is missing at the muzzle and there is verdigris around the rivets. The holster is in about Fair condition.
Our Assessment: The Chamelot A& Delvigne Model 1873 and 1874 revolvers were adopted by the French army as service revolvers for their non-commissioned (1873) and commissioned (1874) officers. The 1873 and 1874 pistols very nearly identical, but the M1874 was blued vs. “In The White”, had a slightly shorter barrel and the cylinder was fluted. The French models were made by Manufacture d’armes de Saint-Étienne (MAS) but the revolvers were so popular, they soon began to be copied by German and Belgian gun makers, and versions were adopted by the Belgian, Dutch, Italian and Swiss armies. This revolver is a Belgian copy of the Model 1874 pistol that was made prior to 1893 as evidenced by the lack of a crown on the Liege proof on the cylinder. It is in about Fine overall condition with about 82% of its original finish remaining. There is thinning on the front edges of the barrel and frame, with pinprick surface erosion scattered over the left sideplate, front strap, trigger guard, backstrap and the bottom of the grip frame. There are also a few handling marks on the left lower shoulder of the barrel and the left side of the frame. The grips are checkered ebony. The left grip has two cracks and a small surface chip at its bottom edge. The checkering shows light wear with moderate to heavy wear along the top and bottom edges of the grips. The bore is bright with sharp rifling and no erosion – there are no signs in the bore or on the cylinder that this revolver was ever fired. The revolver comes with a vintage soft brown leather top flap holster with a pouch on its outside surface for storage of spare ammunition. This is a nice find for collectors of French and Belgian revolvers of the late 19th Century.