Lots of questions regarding old Crescent Arms shotguns recently. This is best info I know of. Note that The Sterling ARms Co. St. Louis Mo. is included.
In 1888, George W. Cilley bought the assets of the defunct Bacon Arms Co. of Norwich, CT and formed an alliance with Frank A. Foster. Cilley and Foster each held several firearms patents, and both were highly qualified in firearms design and manufacture. Production began with single shot tip-up shotguns that had an external side hammer. Double barrel shotgun production was started in 1891. Crescent Fire Arms Co. was incorporated in Connecticut on March 4, 1892. In 1893, the majority of Crescent stock was acquired by H.∓D. FOLSOM located at 314 Broadway in New York City. Henry Titus Folsom (1859-1937) was President of the company, and was succeeded by his son, H. Lloyd (1888-1954), who led the company through the depression and World War II. H.∓D. Folsom distributed Birmingham and Belgian made firearms (including some marked W. Richards and T. Barker) under many trade names from 1890 until about 1932. The Norwich, CT manufactured Crescent guns were marked American Gun Company of New York (NOT American Arms Co., Boston), then Crescent after about 1922. Fred Biffar was an agent for Folson in 1896. In 1897, American Gun Co. listed 5 models: 1. #2641 - Top lever hammergun with Armory Steel barrels (Belgain made) in 12g only for $14. 2. #2650 - With damascus barrels for $15. 3. #2660 - Similar gun but claimed to be all American made for $18. 4. #2655 - Twist barrels and Deeley & Edge snap forend with engraving on locks and trigger guard for $18. 5. #2665 - Greater engraving coverage for $20. In 1954 Folsom was purchased by Universal Tackle and Sporting Goods Co. N.R. DAVIS ARMS COMPANY was located in Assonet, MA from 1853 until at least 1917, operated under the following names: 1853 to 1883‑ N.R. Davis Arms 1883 to 1917‑ N.R. Davis & Sons Co. 1917 to 1930‑ Davis-Warner Arms Corp.‑ Brooklyn, NY and Norwich, CT In 1920, SAVAGE ARMS CORP. purchased J. STEVENS ARMS and later acquired the assets of Page Lewis Company and A.H. Fox. J. Stevens purchased DAVIS-WARNER in 1930. A Stevens memo dated December 15, 1930 announced the purchase from H&D Folsom Arms Company of the assets of Crescent Fire Arms Company of Norwich, Connecticut. The assets of Crescent were to be merged with those of Davis-Warner Arms Corporation and that the newly formed firm would be known as The Crescent-Davis Arms Corporation, Norwich, Conn. On November 4, 1935, an order of dissolution was filed with the New York Secretary of State and the remains were moved to Chicopee Falls and assembled and sold under various trade names. RESOURCE: Bob Hinman "The Golden Age of Shotgunning"
TRADE NAMES (confirmed or possible) used by Folsom imported guns (mostly Belgian sidlocks and identified by proof marks), Crescent (sidelocks), and Crescent-Davis (boxlocks) Crescent made guns may be marked with the gauge followed by a G in a diamond and have barrels of "GENUINE ARMORY STEEL" and stamped "CHOKED BORE." http://proofhouse.com/cm/codes_markings.htm http://www.hoosiergunworks.com/catalog/
... rence.html http://www.gundealersonline.com:80/firearmID.asp
American Bar Lock Wonder for Sears, Roebuck & Co., American Boy for Townley Metal & Hdw. Co. Kansas City, American Gun Co., American Nitro, Aristocrat for Supplee-Biddle Hdw., Armory Gun Co., Bacon Arms, Baker Gun Co., Baklmann Hardware Co., Barker Gun Co., Barrett Gun Co., Bartlett & Co., Bellmore Gun Co., Berkshire No. 3000, Black Beauty, Bluefield Clipper, Bluegrass Arms Co., Blue Whistler, B.M.& S.H. for Blish, Mizet and Silliman Hardware Co. Atchinson KS, Bridge Gun Co., Bridge Gun Works, and Bridge Black Prince for Shapleigh Hdw. Co. St. Louis, Bridgeport Arms Co., Bright Arms Co., Burack Special for Burhans & Black Inc. Syracuse NY, C.G. Bonehill, C.W. Franklin, Canadian Belle, Carolina Arms Co. for Smith-Wadsworth Hdw. Co. Charlotte N.C., Carter's Premier for Garnet-Carter Co. Chattanooga TN, Central Arms Co. for Shapleigh (boxlock guns by Stevens), Charles Richter, Chatham Arms Co., Cherokee Arms Co. for C.M. McClung & Co., Knoxville TN, Chesapeake Gun Co., Chicago Long Range Wonder (in addition to an Andrew Fyrberg & Sons manufactured boxlock), Colonial, Columbian New York Arms Co., Compeer Gun Co. for Van Camp Hdw Indianapolis, Connecticut Arms Co., Cumberland Arms Co. for Gray & Dudley Hdw Co. Nashville TN, Creve Coeur, Cruso for Hibbard, Spencer, Bartlett & Co., Daniel Boone Gun Co. for Belknap Hdw. & Mfg. Co. Louisville KY, Delphian Arms Co. for Supplee-Biddle Hdw. Co. Phila. PA, Delphian Manufacturing Co., Diamond Arms Co. for Shapleigh, Dunlap Special by Davis-Warner for Dunlap Hdw. Co. Macon GA, E.C. Mac, ECLIPSE: Beauty, Company or Eclipse Co., Patent 488316 Dec 20 1892, Meteor, Giant, Giant Gun Co, GunCo, Leader Belgium, Hercules, and Star. All are Aciens Establissment Pieper / Henri Pieper guns made for E.C. Meacham Co. St. Louis, Elgin Arms Co. for Fred Biffar & Co. Chicago and Strauss & Schram Chicago, Elmira Arms Co. Elmira NY, Empire Arms Co., Empire State Arms Co., Wm. Enders Oak Leaf, Enders Royal Service, Royal Field, Royal Western, and Royal American and Special Service for Shapleigh, Essex for Belknap, Farwell Arms Co., Faultless for John M. Smythe Hdw. Co. Chicago, The Field (10 & 12g single barrel), Folsom Arms Co., F.F. Forbes, Forever and H.S. Brown Machine Gun, Fort Pit Arms Co., C.W. Franklin, Fremont Arms Co., Gold Medal Wonder for Sears, Greenfield for H.S.B, H.B.C., H.S.B. & Co., Hanover Arms Co. made by Janssen Fils & Co., Harrison Arms Co. for Sickles & Preston Davenport Iowa, S.H. Harrington, Hartford Arms.Co. for Simmons Hdw and Shapleigh Hdw. St Louis, Harvard, J.C. Henry Arms St. Paul MN, J.H. Obold & Co. Reading PA, Henry Arms Co. was also used by Henri Pieper, Liege. PIEPER TRADE MARKS registered in Belgium included: Bayard (June 9, 1892), Eagle Gun Works, E.Leroy, Modified Diana, H.Pieper, Diane, The Leader, Bayard Arms Co, Pieper Arms Co, Premier Arms Co, National Arms Co, Henry Arms Co, Royal Gun Works, Le Rationnel, Schutz Marke, E-K, Eclipse Company, Metropole, and Monarch Arms Co. Hermitage Arms Co. for Gray & Dudley, Hermitage Gun Co., Hip Spe Bar, Hibbard for H.S.B., Howard Arms Co. for Fred Biffar, Hudson possibly for Hudson Sporting Goods Co. New York, Hummer for Lee Hdw Co Salina KS, Hunter for Belknap, Infallible - Davis-Warner Interstate Arms Co. for Townley, The Interchangeable and The International for E.C. Meacham made by Simonis, Janssen & Dumoulin and Neumann Freres, Jackson Arms Co. for C.M. McClung, J.H. Lau & Co., J. Manton & Co., J.W. Stake by Neumann Freres, John L Smythe & Co., Joseph Arms Co., K K, Keen Kutter for E.C. Simmons Company St. Louis, Kingsland Special and Kingsland 10 Star for Geller, Ward & Hasner St. Louis, Kirk Gun Co., Knickerbocker, Knockabout, Knox-All (also Iver Johnson), Laclede Gun Co., Lakeside for Montgomery Ward & Co., Leader Gun Co. for Chas. Williams Stores Inc. New York, Lee's Special and Lee's Munner Special for Lee Hdw. Co. Salina KS, Leige Arms Co. for Hibbard, Spencer, Bartlett (Belgian made 10 & 12g doubles selling for $45 in 1884), Long Range Marvel, Long Range Winner and Long Range Wonder for Sears, Marshwood for Chas. Williams, Massachusetts Arms Co. for Blish, Mize & Silliman Hdw. Atchison KS, McIntosh, Metal & Hardware Co., Mears, Metropolitan Arms Co. for Siegel Cooper Co. N.Y., Milwaukee Gun Co., Minnesota Arms Co. for Farwell, Ozmun & Kirk Co., Mississippi Arms Co., Mississippi Valley Arms Co. for Shapleigh, Mohawk for B.M.& S., Monitor for Paxton & Gallagher Omaha Neb., Wm. Moore & Co., Mt. Vernon Arms Co., National Arms Co. (not the Marlin branded pump gun) possibly for William Read & Sons Boston, New Britain Arms Co., New Elgin Arms Co., New Empire (used from 1920 to 1930 by Crescent and until 1935 by Crescent-Davis Fire Arms), New England Arms Co. for Chas. J. Godfrey N.Y., Newport for H.S.B., New Rival for Van Camp Hdw. & Iron Co., New York Arms Co. for Garnet Carter Co. Chattanooga TN., New York Machine Made, New York Match Gun, New York Nitro Hammerless, Nitro Bird for Richards & Conover Hdw. Co. K.C., Nitro Hunter for Belknap, Nitro King, Norwich Arms Co., Not-Nac Manufacturing Co. for Canton Hdw. Co. Canton Ohio and Belknap, Osprey for Lou J. Eppinger Detroit, Oxford Arms Co. for Belknap, Pagoma for Paxton, Gallagher Hdw Co., C. Parker & Co., Peerless c. 1915-1930, Perfection for H.G. Lipscomb & Co., Nashville, Piedmont Arms Co. for Piedmont Hdw. Co. Danville, PA, Pioneer Arms for Kruse Hdw. Co., Cincinnati, Pittsfield for H.S.B., Plymouth, Quail, Queen City for Elmira Arms Co. Elmira N.Y., R. Murdock National Firearms Co., Red Chieftan for Supplee-Biddle, Rev-O-Noc for Hibbard, Spencer, Bartlett Co., W. Richards, Rich-Con, Richmond Hardware Co., Charles Richter for New York Sporting Goods Co. N.Y., Rickard Arms Co. for J.A. Rickard Co. Schenectady N.Y., Rival for Van Camp (mainly by Louis Muller), Rocket Special, Rodgers Arms Co. by Henri Pieper, Royal Service for Shapleigh, Rummel Arms Co. for A.J. Rummel Arms Co. Toledo, RUSO inside a rooster for H.S.B., Russell Arms Co. made by Joseph Cap and H. Pieper for Wiebusch & Hiller Ltd. New York NY, S.H. Harrington, St. Louis Arms Co. for Shapleigh and Sears Roebuck in 1897, Seminole, Sheffield Arms Co., Shue's Special for Ira M. Shue Hanover PA, Sickel's Arms Co. for Robert-Sickels & Preston Co. Davenport Iowa, Smithsonian, Southern Arms Co. made by Joseph Janseen, Special Service, Spencer Gun Co. for H.S.B., The Sportsman for W. Bingham Co. Cleveland, Springfield Arms Co. (also Stevens), Square Deal for Stratton-Warren Hdw. Co. Memphis, Stanley Arms Co. for Wiebusch & Hilger Co. New York by Francois Dumoulin, Star Leader, State Arms Co. for J.H. Lau & Co., H.J. Sterling Arms Co., St. Louis Arms Co., Sullivan Arms Co., Superior, Syco for Wyeth Hdw Co. St. Joseph MO, T. Barker and T. Barker New York, Ten Star and Ten Star Heavy Duty for Geller, Ward & Hasner, Tiger for J.H. Hall Co. Nashville, Townley's Pal and Townley's American Boy for Townley Metal, Trap's Best for Watkins-Cottrell Co. Richmond VA, Triumph - Charles Lancaster patent guns made by Crescent for Sears Roebuck, Tryon Special for E.K. Tryon Co., U.S. Arms Co. for Supplee-Biddle, U.S. Field, Victor & Victor Special for H.S.B., Virginia Arms Co. for Virginia Caroline Co. Richmond VA, Volunteer for Belknap, Vulcan Arms Co. for E.K. Tryon, Walters and Son, Warren Arms Co., Washington Arms Co., Wauregan, Wautauga for Wallace Hdw Co. Morristown TN, W. Richards, Whippet for H.S.B., Wildwood, Wilkinson Arms Co. for Richmond Hdw. Co., Richmond VA, William Moore & Co., Wilmont Arms Co., Wilshire Arms Co. for Stauffer, Eshleman & Co. New Orleans, Wiltshire Arms Co., Winfield Arms Co., Winoca Arms Co. for Jacobi Hdw. Co. Philadelphia, Witte Hardware Co., St. Louis, Wm. Parkhurst was marketed by Schoverling, Daly & Gales, Wolverine Arms Co. for Fletcher Hdw. Co. Wilmington NC, Worthington Arms Co. for Geo. Worthington Co Cleveland, The Wyco for Wyeth Hdw. & Mfg. St. Joseph MO, XLCR Crescent-Davis boxlock for W. Bingham Cleveland. THE SAME TRADE NAMES may be found on single and double barrel shotguns manufactured by Savage, Harrington & Richardson, W.H. Davenport Arms, Hopkins and Allen, Stevens Arms & Tool Co., and Iver Johnson.