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You obviously do need help. So do I - with so much info, don't know where to start. Some good pictures would help a lot.
 

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It looks like a turn-off pistol that the barrel screws off for loading. Barrel marks look English but more like marks made to be similar to English. Picture of other side of the pistol is needed to tell more. The lock mechanism may ID its source.
 

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I think that is too early for a screw-barrel pistol, but it might be made from parts of different eras. I would like to see a good picture of the lockplate.

Jim
 

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It's easy to be barking up the wrong tree with so little to go on here. Side plate shape is often a reflection of the lock plate, which suggests pre 1750, likely French - not to deny the possibility it could be much later - or an assembled piece.

The turn-off pistol was alive and well in the 1600s, same design as the one here. Basically the barrel being turn-off, the stock fore end shortened and no ramrod. The "Queen Anne" (1702-15) type, all metal but for the grip, with the barrel screwing on to the receiver which was integrated with the lock mechanism.

The Queen Anne was for the affluent, very labor/skill intensive, almost always silver mounted. The type in this thread only demanded the special skills in making the screw barrel and some are seen into late 1700s when the all metal box lock pocket turn-offs became popular - on into the perc period.

Internet search of turn off pistol or Queen Anne pistol will bring up a lot of hits.

Here are pix of some I have handled. The lower right, the earliest, I once owned. These are heavy pistols with bores .60+ cal, barrels 6-8" long.



This pix is a 'lock, stock & barrel' type of turnoff I had years ago, small, much more like the one in question in this thread. Germanic about 1730:

 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for everything so far! And the barrel does unscrew. I'll have more pictures later this afternoon.
 

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With the little detail visible, from what I think I see, probably French ca. 1750 - not to say that full detail would prove it. The almost straight-line lower of the lock plate tends toward ca 1750, consistent with bridle-less pan & gooseneck cock - both the latter possibily a matter of economy more than date. The bulbous butt treatment probably owner's choice. Most mid 1750s piece are seen with spurred butt caps. There are always exceptions, I once had a 1730s French pair by a famous maker with round butts.

All that said, I wouldn't put up a strong argument against other thoughtful opinion. With any unmarked piece it's always a matter of interpretation & opinion - as in my little turnoff above. It was discussed in our Long Island NY antique gun club by dealers and collectors and decided to call it Germanic, which could mean central Europe possibly German, Dutch or other. Maybe I should call yours Frankish?

Yours is a scarce kind of gun. I checked the offerings of a couple big dealers and found none similar. Whether scarcity means value is questionable. I never heard of screw-barrel collector but knew some interested in developmental examples and variations. With little supply and little demand it's like a guy finding the right bride.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Thank you for all the great info rhmc24, its been in the family for as long as my father can remember, we're just trying to figure out it's origin and you're helping tremendously. If it'll help or not, I'll post clearer pictures later this afternoon.
 

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The Proof and View marks with the crown look English, of about the early 1700's, although the crown is not the usual double arch type.

Jim
 

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Jim K ia right in that the marks look English but with some differences. I checked my books, Blackmore for English & Stockel for European. Blackmore illustrates hundreds and Stockel many thousands, including some English. No English view marks are seen in shield and/or with that crown. Blackmore's @#14 of 1740 is similar but nowhere exact. English records are fairly complete and Blackmore was the expert in the Tower of London for years. I met him a few times ca 1970s.

Stockel I (in Danish language) is in two volumes from 1938 but considering the chaotic state of Europe, great as it is, probably only scratches the surface. I have the "old" Stockel. A "New Stockel", in English. was published in 1970s incorporating mostly English info, which I bought but disposed of when it continued some old errors.

Dog and pony stories aside, I think these proof marks are either of some obscure maker or more likely, made to closely resemble English marks to enhance preception of value.

For me, that's all she wrote.
 

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I would suspect the latter. I agree that the marks don't look English (as I said the crown is different, and the P should be GP) but I don't recall any other country or maker using that P/V combination, so it is certainly possible that they are a deception.

Jim
 
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