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Engraved Colt 1877 Lightning

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by CountryGunsmith, Feb 26, 2003.

  1. CountryGunsmith

    CountryGunsmith New Member

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    old fogey
    Member
    Posts: 1
    (3/26/02 10:12:17 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del All Info on Old Colt Revolver
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    We have 6 shot old Colt revolver with pearl hand grips. The gun originally belonged to my husband's grandfather and probably dates from the late 1800s or early 1900s. The barrel has engraving (scrolls) on it. The three visible serial numbers all match, and are 119902. Any information on this gun would be appreciated--age, some range of value. Thanks!

    AntiqueDr
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 2360
    (3/26/02 10:14:18 pm)
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    Re: Info on Old Colt Revolver
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    I've been known to handle some old Colts from time to time (I think I'm down to fifteen or so right now).

    First, do you have to manually cock the revolver each time to fire it or can you fire it simply by pulling the trigger?

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    old fogey
    Member
    Posts: 2
    (3/26/02 10:27:53 pm)
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    All you have to do is pull the trigger.

    Zigzag2
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 2740
    (3/27/02 8:08:40 am)
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    Hello old fogey and welcome to the Firearms Forum.



    Xracer
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 1896
    (3/27/02 9:28:23 am)
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    Welcome to TFF old fogey.

    If would help if you could give us ALL of the writing on the revolver.....also a general description of it's condition.

    old fogey
    Member
    Posts: 3
    (3/27/02 10:00:55 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: Info on Old Colt Revolver
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    Thanks for the welcome--here's some more info. On the side of the barrel it says COLT D. A. 38--on the top of the barrel it says COLT'S PT F. A. MFG Cs on top line/ below that is HARTFORD, CT. U. S. A.
    Both of those sets of words are in a specific area of the scroll design.
    On the area of the "frame" (?) below the cylinder (bullet chamber?) on what I would call the left side (if I was holding the gun in a shooting position) it says PAT. SEPT 18,187(?)
    " " 5, " 74
    " JAN. 19, " 75

    Those are ditto marks, as they appear--three separate lines, one below the other.

    I know little to nothing about assessing condition--however, the scroll work is not worn, the hand grips are not cracked, they show the color variations of mother-of-pearl. Since you have forced me to look at this carefully, again, on the left side , directly below the cylinder, there is a "rearing" horse in a circle. It does not appear on right side.

    The screw heads are not "chewed up" and the trigger pulls easily.

    Hope this helps. You have tested my bi-focals!!

    old fogey
    Member
    Posts: 4
    (3/27/02 10:11:50 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: Info on Old Colt Revolver
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    Well, I have gone beyond bi-focals to a magnifying glass, and the top date is 1871. Have also learned that the person the Colt belonged to was a deputy sherrif in Montgomery County, Missouri.
    Thanks.

    AntiqueDr
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 2361
    (3/28/02 5:54:51 am)
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    Re: Info on Old Colt Revolver
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    It would appear that you have a Colt Model of 1877, also known as the Colt Lightning. Yours was made in 1900.

    Two things: upper condition specimens of this model are scarce, and valuable, AND factory engraved pieces and/or pieces with documentable law enforcement provenance are rarer still.

    I strongly suggest you obtain a letter from the Colt Historian documenting the engraving, and any written provenance regarding the law enforcement connection. This gun COULD be worth $2500 or more depending nn several factors, so a hands-on appraisal by a reputable Colt collector (NOT necessarily the local gun shop) is a must.

    Good luck!
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