1819 NORTH PERCUSSION-CONVERSION PISTOL PICKED UP ON THE GETTYSBURG BATTLEFIELD

$1,850.00 SOLD

Quantity Available: None

Item Code: 1000-1001

This is one of two pieces picked up by Peter Geiser, a mechanic living in Waynesboro, “shortly after the Battle of Gettysburg along Seminary Ridge, about half a mile or so south of the Seminary,” a find location that suggests a southern origin. It comes with a notarized letter from a well-known collector who purchased it in 1989 at the Gettysburg Civil War show when Geiser’s grandson brought it in along with a M1832 short sword that we are offering separately.

North made 20,400 of these .54 caliber pistols from 1819 to 1823. This one is full length with the barrel uncut, the front sight in place, and the swivel ramrod there as well. The lock safety is in place. The barrel proof marks are legible as are the lock markings: “S. North” over an eagle flanked by a “U.S., “over “Middltn. Conn.” To the rear of the hammer is the date 1822. The wood has a good fit to the metal, though there is a chip out around the upper back end of the lock plate and a crack through the wrist. The left side flat, however, shows a visible inspector’s cartouche in the wood. The metal is fairly smooth and the screw slots are sharp. The barrel shows two small pressure dents along the left edge forward of the barrel proofs, likely from the conversion process. The conversion was done by the drum-and-bolster method with a civilian style hammer showing a few flourishes on its side. This is not an uncommon alteration on state militia arms and it might well have made its way north in a southern saddle holster though being found together with a short sword, suggests an artillery connection. [sr] [ph:L]

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