Here's the question:
Two words. Doesn't get any simpler than that. He didn't ask for 'the best', or 'the prettiest', or 'the most authentic', just 'recommendations'.
Here's the answer: Ruger Old Army.
Again, doesn't get any simpler. One recommendation. No discussion of the entire history of black powder revolvers, just a simple recommendation. Some will agree, some will disagree. Is it the best 'first' bp revolver for the OP? I have no way of knowing that. But, he didn't ask me that, did he?
By the way, Bill, what time is it?