COMING IN MAY 2021
VERY RARE & EXTREMELY FINE PALL MALL CASED ENGRAVED & GOLD COLT 3RD MODEL HIGH HAMMER DERRINGER, S# E7011.
Cal. .41. S# E7011.
Even though 11,000 of this 3rd variation 3rd model (serial range 2300-13000) were made, few have elaborate engraving and gold wash as this example. This is a beautiful example of the standard early configuration with 2.5” barrel, half-moon front sight, large slanted block letters “COLT”, high hammer, small British proofs, Rosewood grips. Engraved coverage is about 60% (class C). The engraving is in the style of Nimschke with foliate arabesque patterns with fine pearled background. Barrel and frame are silverplated and then gold washed, Hammer is case colored and trigger is bright steel. This gun was made 1873-1874.
Doug Eberhart, in his 2011 text on cartridge Colt and predecessor derringers shows another 3rd model 3rd variation, SN E6999 (only 2 SNs away) which is engraved almost identically on page 56. The Eberhart gun like vast majority of Colt derringers is well-worn and no traces of gold or silver frame like is present on E7011.
Derringer is housed in a fine British oak casing with Pall Mall label, blue velvet lined with 2 lidded compartments and fitted slot for steel slotted cleaning rod. These little pistols were extremely popular as to their power and ease of concealment. Fine gentleman, cowboys, gamblers, and ladies of the night were all known to carry these. Most saw hard use and are rarely found in high condition. The gold wash over silver is so thin, it wore easily. This may be the finest example known or at least ranks among the top few of any early 3rd models, 1st through 4th variations.