Rare Colt Model 1848 Dragoon Percussion Army Revolver – Third Model (16196)
Original Colt Model 1848 Dragoon Percussion Army Revolver (3rd Model) with all original parts and matching serial numbers (16196) | .44 caliber | Has the 7.5″ barrel that is part round and part octagonal; with an overall length of 14″ and weighs 4.2 lbs | The top of the barrel bears the inscription: “ADDRESS SAML COLT NEW-YORK CITY” | The hand engraved cylinder bears the serial number “16196” and is still clear and visible | The only other discernible marks on the Revolver are the inspector mark letter “H” stamped on the upper brass portion of the grip’s brass strap, and immediately next to the barrel lug wedge slot on the left side of the barrel | The iron bears a fine dark brown-grey patina, while the brass remains smooth and bright | Barrel fitted with a brass blade front sight & hammer has a “V” notch in the lip | Dark walnut grips with no apparent chipping or cracks | The revolver’s action is tight, crisp and in sync | The gun’s parts are all fastened firmly and all mechanical pieces are tightly fitted and working properly.
An Amazing Original Colt Model 1848 Dragoon Percussion Army Revolver (3rd Model) with all original parts and matching serial numbers (16196) | Only a total of 10,500 of these Dragoons were ever made (between 1851 & 1861) – making the Colt Model 1848 Dragoon Percussion Army Revolver very Rare | Chambered for .44 caliber ball ammunition | The Dragoon was personally designed by Samuel Colt for the U.S. Army’s Regiment of Mounted Rifles, but were also issued to the Army’s “Dragoon” Regiments (where the name for the revolver originated) | Has a 7.5″ barrel that is part round and part octagonal; Revolver has an overall length of 14″ and weighs 4.2 lbs | The top of the barrel bears the inscription: “ADDRESS SAML COLT NEW-YORK CITY” | The hand engraved cylinder bears the serial number “16196” and is still clear and visible. The left side of the frame is also inscribed “Colts Patent” in two lines | The matching serial number 16196 is stamped on the rear underside of the barrel, the underside of the frame, the brass trigger guard assembly, and the underside of the butt | The Revolver has three discernible inspector marks – an “H” is stamped on the upper brass portion of the grip’s brass strap and immediately next to the barrel lug wedge slot on the left side of the barrel; and an “L” is stamped on the right upper portion of the brass trigger guard (See Pictures).
Unlike the Dragoon 1st and 2nd models, this 3rd model has the oval shaped trigger guard | The iron of the gun bears a fine dark brown-grey patina overall, while the brass remains smooth and bright | The barrel is fitted with a brass blade front sight | The hammer has a “V” notch in the lip to act as a rear sight | The dark walnut grips are gorgeous with no apparent chipping or cracks | The revolver’s action is tight, crisp and in sync | The gun’s parts are all fastened firmly and all mechanical pieces are tightly fitted and working properly | The only missing part is the screw for the elbow joint of the loading lever | The Gun’s Condition is Very Good + overall based on the NRA Condition Standards.
The Dragoon revolver was designed as a solution to numerous problems encountered with the Walker Colt. Although it was introduced after the Mexican-American War, it became popular among civilians during the 1850s and 1860s, and was also used during the American Civil War.
A total of 10,500 The Third Model Dragoon was manufactured between 1851 through 1860 with serial numbers ranging from 10,200 to 19,600. This design had more variations as compared to its earlier counterparts. Some of the third model Colt Dragoon Revolvers had frame cuts for detachable shoulder stocks, horizontal loading lever latches and folding leaf sights. Third Colt Dragoon Revolvers had a round trigger guard. Government records showed an order for 8,390 Dragoons.
The Dragoon was produced because of the problems seen with the fielded Colt Walker revolvers, namely, the Walker’s large size, four and a half pounds, making it suitable only for use as a saddle-mounted revolver, the Walker’s propensity for cylinders exploding on occasion when fired (due to the chambers being loaded with too much powder), and the Walker’s habit of dropping the loading lever upon discharge, locking up the revolver action in the middle of combat. The Colt Dragoon Revolver had a comparatively shorter cylinder (thus preventing overloading the cylinder) and held up to 50 grains of powder, whereas the Walker had used up to 60 grains of powder. The Dragoon Revolver had a shorter barrel at 7.5 inches (some later revolvers 8 inches) as compared to the 9 inches (230 mm) barrel on the Walker. A loading lever latch in front of the lever replaced the spring to keep the lever from dropping during recoil, thereby preventing jamming of the revolver. These variations made the Colt Dragoon Revolver 4 pounds two ounces. These changes also reduced the risks of the Colt Dragoon Revolver from exploding when fired, unlike the risk that had been demonstrated with the Walker revolvers.
In the troublesome events that led to the Civil War, Colt Dragoons became extremely popular. In the beginning Colt Dragoon Revolvers were issued for the U.S. Army’s Mounted Rifles. They were carried in pommel holsters on the saddle. The Colt Dragoon Revolver gained popularity among civilians in the Southwest where many had served in the Mexican-American War. The Dragoon became a master weapon for civilians who hailed it as a powerful weapon of the time.
Famous users included Joaquin Murietta, the California bandit, Charley Parkhurst, California teamster, James Douglas Byrd, Town Marshal, Watsonville, California, 1868, Tiburcio Vasquez, Californio bandit, Union general George B McClellan, probably Harriet Tubman of the Underground Railroad, and fictionally Augustus McCrae, in the novel Lonesome Dove, Mattie Ross in the novel True Grit and in the 2010 film version (the 1969 film of that name had Mattie Ross using a Colt Walker revolver, though John Wayne’s character Rooster referred to it as a Colt’s Dragoon). Charley Parkhurst, while driving freight, was confronted by two bandits whom he dispatched with the Colt Holster Pistol. According to Harper’s Weekly, James Butler (Wild Bill) Hickok arrived in Springfield, Missouri carrying a Dragoon though it is generally accepted that he used a Navy in his street duel with Davis Tutt.
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Colt Model 1848 Dragoon Percussion Army Revolver – Third Model