This is a late production Model 1849 Percussion Revolver in .31 caliber with 4" barrel and five shot cylinder. The Model 1849 was Colt's most popular revolver during the 19th century. Just over 340,000 were built between 1850-1873 which ran from the era of the Colt Dragoon Revolvers all the way to Colt's first cartridge revolvers in the 1870's. Many went west to California during the Gold Rush in the early 1850's. During the Civil War, these were quite popular with soldiers fighting for both the Union and the Confederacy, primarily as backup weapons. This one has a serial # in the 308,000 range and was made in 1868; the year before the transcontinental railroad was completed. It has the correct later style single line New York barrel address. It also has the correct late style hammer with the checkering pattern within a small square shaped border instead of the earlier style borderless cross-hatching. Parts have 100% all matching numbers. Note: The loading lever is not numbered which is correct in the later serial ranges for the Model 1849.range. This is the fourth one we've had like this in the past few years from our estimation, the numbers were dropped for the loading levers somewhere in the mid-200,000 range. Here is a similar item we sold last year in the 267,000 range that was also built without a number on the loading lever.
Overall condition is NRA Antique Very Good Plus. The photos don't quite do it justice but in person, this little Colt has 65-70% original blue remaining on the barrel with the balance turning to a patina which is scattered through the blue. Original barrel wedge even has some blue. The cylinder shows more holster wear and has about 5-10% original blue remaining at the back on the lugs between cones with the balance turned to a silver gray patina. The cylinder scene is quite good with the exception of a few light pits and some evidence of plier teeth marks in a couple spots from some careless former owner. The safety pins on the backs of the lugs are still visible. Frame has a nice COLT'S PATENT on left side...not much in the way of case colors other than a few hints around the bottom of the recoil shield. Also a few hints of case color around the fulcrum of the loading lever (see photo). Several screws have good traces of fire blue. Brass trigger guard retains 15% original silver plating and backstrap has approx. 5% silver on the top profiles. Late Colts tend to have very thin silver plating and this one actually has more than some minty examples we've had in the past. With the exception of a few dings on the right profile and butt, the original grips are in Fine Condition with 95% of its original violin grade varnish with perfect wood-to-metal fit around the straps and frame. No chips, cracks, or repairs. Very Good mechanics. Barrel-to-frame lockup is nice and tight. Bore is in Very Good condition with strong lands and grooves that still shows a bit of luster. All in all, a very nice example of a Colt Percussion Pocket Revolver that's 100% original down to the smallest screw. This one has a lot of original blue for the money.