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Nice Civil War era Percussion Boot Pistol

This is an unmarked single shot Percussion Boot pistol in approximately 34 caliber.  It has an internally mounted hammer, birdshead grips, and a part round/octagonal barrel which unscrews from the frame to facilitate loading and cleaning.  These were cheap inexpensive weapons designed with mostly cast parts very average fit and finish.  No doubt, these found favor with Civil War soldiers as carry weapons...(see Photo of Confederate soldier posing with an almost identical pistol to this one).  The one thing that drew me to this one was its condition.  Normally, being of such low quality, these were not cared for and the norm is to find one with a heavy dark patina.  As a result, I've often wondered what these would have looked like when they were new.  Well, this one has done a pretty good job to answer those questions.  The barrel still has 60% original blue with the balance thinning out to a light patina. The cast frame, hammer, and trigger guard are also blued...but more wavy like case colors...like some type of quenched blue or oil blue....about 50% remaining.  Grips are made from some type of light hardwood and still show about 85% original varnish.  Only flaw is a very small fleck of wood missing around the grip screw....yes, the mfr was too cheap to use escutcheons around the screw to protect the grips.  Mechanically, the action works perfectly.  As cheaply built as these were, I gotta admit, this one works quite nicely and fits in the hand rather well...better than other higher quality pistols from this era. Bore is filthy and rusty...and looks to have never been rifled...why bother I guess...once you're past the octagonal chamber, there is only about 1" of tube left.  These were very cheaply made guns and its quite interesting to study the corners they cut in production.  What's unusual about this one is the condition....these were fairly disposable...the maker didn't even want you to know who he was...and ones that have survived 150 years are usually pretty beat.  This is one of the best I can recall ever seeing.  Would make a nice addition as a representative to a collection of pocket pistols, deringers, or early American percussion weapons.

Item# 0881




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