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Item   Title MB Now at Next bid Bids New bid Max bid  
426   Pvt. A. B. Gray Confederate Gun and Holster  $500 $605 $666 3 You must login to place a bid.

#426 - Pvt. A. B. Gray Confederate Gun and Holster

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Classic Colt 1851 Navy Revolver used by an Alabama Partisan Ranger
Description                           Estimate: $5,000 - 7,000          

Colt Model 1851 Navy Revolver and holster belonging to Pvt. A. B. Gray of Co. C, 15th Battalion, Alabama ‘Partisan Rangers,’ who died of disease in 1863. The revolver is serial #98973, .36 caliber, 7 1/2″ octagon barrel with a dark, pitted bore. This is an 1861 manufactured revolver that has all-matching numbers, including the barrel wedge and cylinder arbor, with the metal having an overall darkly mottled gray-black patina and moderate to heavy surface pitting commensurate with long storage in leather and high humidity. The cylinder has deep freckling at the face and further heavy pinprick pitting around the nipples. Nevertheless, the naval scene remains partially visible with the serial number fully legible. The trigger guard and gripstraps have a mostly pale yellow-ochre patina with some spots of dark tarnish and traces of the original silver plate still visible around and on the trigger guard bow. The walnut grips are in good to very good condition with an old added piano varnish that displays numerous small handling marks and flaking on both sides. Additionally, there are several chips and impact marks around the butt, and noticeable carry wear to both sides of the grip flare. The lock-up is quite tight and the mechanism is fully functional. The revolver is housed in a period ‘Slim Jim’ style, dark brown bridle leather holster with very narrow belt made from what looks to be spliced pieces of horse tack. The leather has flaked heavily but is still intact and quite supple. A large folder containing an extensive National Archives service history for Pvt. Gray, compiled by The Horse Soldier Research Service, accompanies the revolver and lists his date of death as October 6, 1863, after an extended illness whilst serving with the 15th (1st) Battn. Alabama ‘Partisan Rangers’ Cavalry. Additionally, a 1916 dated application for a Mississippi widow's pension by Martha Gray, his wife, is included which also lists his unit and officers. Interestingly, the archival research also includes the records for a different “A. B. Gray” who also died in 1863, but served in the 13th and 56th Battn. ‘Partisan Rangers,’ units not listed in Mrs. Gray's application (soldier records from much of the Confederacy, especially from Alabama, are extremely fragmented and incomplete). This is a fantastic Confederate Model 1851 Navy that has a lot of tragic history attached to it and would make a splendid addition to any collection.

As an antique gun this will transfer without any restrictions.


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