This is a very strong example of a Colt New Line Pocket Revolver in scarce .41 Caliber Centerfire. Its been several years since we've had a large frame New Line but never one this nice. Serial number is in the low 7000 range and was manufactured in early 1877. After S&W's Rollin White Patent expired, Colt entered the cartridge revolver business in the early 1870's but had a tough time selling high quality pocket models. This was primarily due to the influx of cheap low quality pocket pistols that flooded the market. Given the tough competition, Colt probably exported and sold many of their guns during the 1870's to the UK. The New Line was made in several chamberings and 3 frame sizes in .22, 30, 32, 38, and 41 Calibers (with the .41 Caliber being the scarcest).
Overall condition is NRA Antique Excellent with 80% bright original case colors on the frame. Left side of frame is marked "41 CAL" and "C". The stubby little 2 1/4" barrel has 60% original blue overall with balance flaked from age...not from wear. The left side has a nice etched panel that reads "COLT NEW .41" with strong traces of original blue still intact across the lettering. The top is marked with a 2 line address which reads, "COLT'S PT. F.A. MFG CO."/ "HARTFORD CT. U.S.A." For such a short barrel, Colt sure put a lot of markings on it but they weren't done just yet. The bottom had the serial number and Sept. 15, 1874 Patent date. Cylinder has 85% bright original blue. Many of the screws still retain significant percentages of original fire blue...especially the grip screw which is just incredibly rich in color. The hammer retains nearly all of its original bright polish on the sides and 90% fire blue across the back. Even the exposed spur trigger (typically a high wear area) shows nearly all of its original fire blue. However, the most amazing fire blued part on this gun is the loading gate which is about 98%. Original rosewood grips are practically flawless showing 98% dark original piano varnish. Perfect wood to metal fit with no cracks. This little gun really shows very little wear despite being 130 years old. Mechanics are excellent, chambers still have most of their original blue intact, and bore looks perfect. It shows very little evidence of being fire, if any. This revolver probably sold through Colt's London Agency as there are some tiny English Proofs on the barrel and cylinder.. Just my opinion but it seems like the nicest Colts with high percentages of original finish often sold across the pond where they were given superior care and storage conditions. A fantastic example of the Colt New Line in the largest, most desirable and scarcest caliber.