A Very Rare Collier Flintlock Revolving Shotgun

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August 29, 2023

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A Very Rare Collier Flintlock Revolving Shotgun.


Cal. 54 smooth bore
S# 117

Elisha Collier of Boston, MA and his partner Artemas Wheeler devised this revolving flintlock mechanism around 1814; it was a true revolver, not a multi-barrel type. Wheeler continued its manufacture in America with limited success. Collier took this invention to England where it was patented in 1818 and produced by some of the top gunmakers in London including S. Nock and T. Mortimer. From patent use numbers it is estimated that about 225 Collier pistols and long guns were made. Urban legend relates that Samuel Colt saw weapons of this type and they were the inspiration for his famous revolving pistols and rifles.

This good example has 28″ Damascus barrel with full length under rib holding two plain pipes for rosewood ramrod with brass tip and tail. “E. H. Collier 117 London” is engraved on concave solid rib. Five shot revolving fluted cylinder must be pulled to the rear and revolved by hand for each subsequent shot. Gas seal is very good with rear portion of barrel rebated to engage a matching recess in cylinder. Flint lock with reinforced cock has powder magazine in very thick frizzen. With gun at full cock cylinder can be rotated. Closing the frizzen causes a linking mechanism to rotate a drum which picks up powder from the reservoir and deposits it in the pan. When frizzen flies forward the drum rotates to close off magazine and refills drum for the next shot. Quality of manufacture is very high. Lock and mechanism are finely engraved with large scroll within feather borders. Lock with exterior mounted reinforced cock is engraved “E. H. Collier” “117 PATENT”. Frizzen is also engraved “E. H. COLLIER 117 PATENT” on powder reservoir. Trigger guard with stand of arms engraving on bow has curled tail forming grip. Stock of nicely crotch figured European walnut features iron buttplate with engraved long top tang, flat top square checkering at grip, inlaid silver eight point star on left side and a silver rectangle with cut corners at top of grip. Tip of short loading rod protrudes from toe of butt.


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