This old Colt Single Action Army was made in the year 1894. This is a good straight original example of the SAA. Its not very often I find these, usually one or two a year, that I can price realistically and most importantly, can feel good about given the amount of mischief that has surrounded this popular gun for decades. This one has been in a collection since the early 1980's, its very original, a great configuration, and we feel represents a good value for the money. For starters, it has the desirable 7 1/2" barrel length. Next, its in probably the most desired Caliber which is 44-40 or 44 WCF as the barrel is marked "FRONTIER SIX SHOOTER" on the left side. Top of barrel has a one line address which reads "COLT'S PT. F.A. MFG Co HARTFORD CT. U.S.A.-" Serial number is in the 158,000 range with all matching numbers. Early style black powder frame with patent dates on the left side of the frame. Checkered hard rubber grips with rampant Colt logo at the top of both grips.
Overall, this one is in pretty decent shape for an early black powder gun. Its all original except for the small screw that holds the cylinder pin. This is pretty common as this had to be taken out to remove and clean the cylinder & bore...so it got taken out a lot and at some point, it had to be replaced. The rest of the screws are original which is nice considering most of these Single Actions get their screws changed to improve the appearance of the gun. The metal is mostly a smooth gray brown patina with nice edges and great markings with small areas of scattered pitting mostly on the extreme edges and corners of the gun. My guess is this was probably stored for a very long time either wrapped up in a textile or in a leather holster that allowed some moisture to penetrate. There are traces of original blue in the protected areas, mainly around the triggerguard and sides of the backstrap behind the frame. The outer rounded portion of the ejector rod has has been cleaned at some point as its just a little lighter shade of gray on the very outer edges..the inner portions of the rod are the same color as the rest of the gun. The case colors on the frame have faded out and turned to a mostly gray patina. There are still traces of mottling on the hammer and frame. The grips are in excellent condition with no chips or cracks with sharp checkering. Good bore. Action works flawlessly with all 4 clicks present when the hammer is cocked.
A nice example of an early antique Colt in one of the most popular configurations and calibers. The 44-40 Colt was introduced in 1878 to compliment the Winchester 1873 rifle also chambered for this caliber. Having both a rifle and handgun in the same centerfire cartridge provided a great advantage to life on the frontier. Since this cartridge was also reloadable, one of the world's first, it allowed cartridges to be used over and over. This was also a very practical matter especially when the nearest town where one could obtain new cartridges was often times hundreds of miles away. Hence, the name Frontier Six Shooter...it was made for frontier use with a Winchester.