Colt’s PT. F.A. MFG. Co. Single Action Army Artillery Model revolver, serial #116900, 45 Colt, 5 1/2" artillery length barrel with a mostly bright, very good plus bore which shows strong rifling and some sparse minor pitting. This is a rather nice revolver. The barrel retains perhaps 30% original blue in the protected areas, the balance faded to a pleasing smooth brown patina with the areas around the front sight still showing original feathering from the factory polish. The outer edge of the ejector housing is primarily a pewter and brown patina with the protected flutes showing nearly all their original blue. The frame is primarily a pleasing smoky mottled faded case-hardened patina retaining perhaps 30% original colors, most vivid in the pinched area at the front of the frame and beneath the recoil shields, the trigger guard and grip frame are primarily a pewter and softer brown patina with some minor sparse pinprick pitting. The hammer retains only traces of original colors and is mostly a deep mottled gray patina. The cylinder has flaked primarily to a pewter and brown with generous traces of original blue in the flutes. The one-piece walnut grip rates about very good showing perhaps an old light cleaning and with chips at the front and rear edges of the right side panel. Originally configured as a cavalry model delivered to the US Government Inspector at the Colt factory on Dec 14, 1885 and what is today commonly known as a “Late Military Model”. The frame is David F. Clark inspected from the 1884 contract and shows a very good "US" on the left side of the frame. The gun was returned to the Colt factory for refurbishing and returned to the Springfield Armory on August 3, 1903. A light cartouche of Rinaldo A. Carr and 1903 date can be seen faintly on the right panel, there is none on the left as-is correct for a 1903 inspected gun. Consistent with the Colt refurbished cavalry single action revolvers, it has a mix of serial numbered components. The trigger guard is numbered 116486, the back strap is 116488; the cylinder is unnumbered and is "RAC" marked on its rear edge showing replacement during the 1903 refurbish. The barrel shows small "P" and "A" inspectors markings and is numbered 2232 beneath the ejector rod housing; it retains its original barrel roll-marking. The gun times well and locks up mechanically. Includes Colt factory letter authenticating its original manufacture and return to the factory for conversion to the artillery model. HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE: This is an excellent example of a nice old veteran of the late Apache Wars (1880-1889) that was hastily made ready for the Moro Rebellion (1899-1913) in the Philippines when the Army realized the ineffectiveness of the .38 caliber Model 1892.
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