View Full Version : I'm new and need help identifying this.

February 12, 2011, 06:34 PM
I just inherited this from my grandmother who passed away. I have no clue what it is or when it was made. Maybe someone here can help me.

Cap and ball revolver pistol.
M on the trigger guard which appears to be brass.
H on the receiver in front of the drum.
M on the drum itself towards the rear of it and an H near the front.
Serial Number on the bottom of the barrel under the (priming handle?) 44418
The primer handle or loading rod has a screw on the frame instead of a pin. I read that there was a difference on another site.
The wooden grip appears to have either BL, BK, or BX script insignia on it.

I was told it could be a Remington New Army model 1861.

Any info available is appreciated.
Year made-
Whether it is a Remington New Army or not-

Thanks for any help.


32 Magnum
February 12, 2011, 07:29 PM
It's a Remington New Model Army cap and ball - or a good copy of one.

Ben Towe
February 12, 2011, 07:55 PM
I am by no means an expert, but it looks like the real deal.

February 12, 2011, 07:55 PM
But that looks like an original 1858 Remington.

My advice would be to have it appraised,,,
Also do not clean it until you do that,,,
Improper cleaning hurts value.

You might have a reasonably valuable gun on your hands,,,
If not valuable it's still a very desirable heirloom.

My condolences for your grandfather,,,
My congratulations on your inheritance.


February 12, 2011, 08:04 PM
That seems to be an original.
Don't try to "improve" anything, tidy anything, fix anything or clean anything!
Just get an appraisal on it.
Dont even clean or oil it. ALL of these things are worth lots of money even old rust is valuable as long as you call it "patina":D

February 12, 2011, 08:10 PM
Thanks for the quick reply. Would the serial # help identify a year?


I seems to have a stamp of some type on the handle that looks like a script BX or BK.

The end of the barrel has some wear on it like it was holstered at some point. There is also some rust inside the barrel.

I know not to clean it as I have a few older guns like a small ring swedish mauser and a K98 mauser. This would seem quite a bit older than them. Any guess as to an age?

Jim March
February 12, 2011, 08:38 PM
Well the first ones were 1858. A lot were used in the Civil War and certainly still in production then.

February 12, 2011, 08:41 PM
What caliber were they made in?

Are there any reputable websites I can use for research? Before I find an appraiser.

February 12, 2011, 08:44 PM
Are there any reputable websites I can use for research? Before I find an appraiser.

Actually, you should repost this in the Black Powder forum on this website,,,
Some of them folk are quite knowledgable about the 1858 Remmies.


February 12, 2011, 08:50 PM

February 12, 2011, 09:20 PM
Looks like a Remington 1858 to me. I am not sure of the subtle differenced that would indicate a '61.
Caliber If Army, should be a .44
If Navy, then it will be a .36 cal.

Mike Irwin
February 12, 2011, 10:53 PM
Aaron, you've been around here plenty long enough to know that we do NOT multipost!

I'm going to merge the two threads together and put them in Blackpowder.

February 12, 2011, 11:05 PM
Nice piece, loving the plum color, do not try to clean it!

Looks like the real deal, if so probably worth $1000 to $1500 ish, maybe a bit less, or more.

These are generally referred to as the New Model Remington. (Army or Navy) people tend to just group them as the 1958 but there were a couple models, the 1861 usually is referred that way because of the safety notches between cylinders started then...your seems to have them, so made after 1861. Last one's were made in 1875 if I recall correctly.

Can't tell you offhand about the serial numbers, but if no one has them tonight I might scour my books to see if I have some..I don't think so though

February 13, 2011, 01:18 AM
Based on what I've seen while perusing the Remington Society's web page, I also think that you've got an original there. The serial number, based on RSA's research puts the year of manufacture as 1863. The script lettering on the grip is the Army acceptance cartouche. It's probably "BH" for Benjamin Hannis. The letters that you mentioned being stamped here and there are subassembly acceptance stamps.

Since it has a cartouche, that means it's an Army revolver, so it's a .44 caliber. Navies did not have a cartouche on the grip.

The serial number is also stamped on the frame under the grips, but, to be honest, I would not advice removing them unless you really, really want to verify that the numbers match. And even then, I'd think twice.

February 13, 2011, 01:36 AM
One thing you didn't mention which should be present on a gun in that good of condition is the two line barrel legend on the top flat which reads PATENTED SEPT. 14, 1858/E. REMINGTON & SONS, ILION, N.Y. U.S.A./NEW MODEL

Bill Akins
February 13, 2011, 05:50 AM
If you have any older relatives left who knew your grandmother and grandfather, you might want to ask them if they knew anything about that revolver. If you could establish provenance (historical proof) that one of your relatives carried it in the civil war, or even used it in the days of the old west, along with any very old family photos showing or documents mentioning the revolver, that could make it quite valuable. Not only to other collectors, but to yourself. If it was me, I don't believe I would consider selling it. It may be a true piece of your old family's history. I would research as best I could and find out.


Doc Hoy
February 13, 2011, 06:28 AM
Did you notice the safety notches on the cylinder?

If I understand correctly they will help to date the pistol, until serial number analysis can be performed.

February 13, 2011, 07:09 AM
Did you notice the safety notches on the cylinder?

If I understand correctly they will help to date the pistol, until serial number analysis can be performed.

Doc that just identifies it as a new model. The old model had no notches and had a slot on top of loading lever so you wouldn't have to drop the lever to remove cylinder. The old model stopped at about 10,000 if I'm not mistaken. That plus the silver bead front sight puts it pretty early on for a new model which really should be the 63 model since thats when production started. That one if it's the real deal was probably made in late 63 or early 64. I don't have the yearly production numbers at hand or the means to date it by the numbers.

February 13, 2011, 08:30 AM
Looks like the new model Army Remington as other have identified.

Some info I had in my Remington notes.

Produced from 1863-1875 the New model army came in .44 caliber and 8 inch barrel. The navy version was .36 caliber and a 7 3/8 inch barrel. A new front blade sight was added to the army version,the navy version kept the older german silver cone front sight. The New Model Army replaced the easy cylinder removing feature at the request of the Army. Remington now added a low spur trigger. The loading lever was now a large web design. The cylinder pin had 2 ears as did the previous Old model army. More than 130,000 pieces of this Model were purchased from 1863 to 1875.

Condition is everything on determining value. I see prices ranging from 1-2.5K. Your appears to be in the middle of that price range. If you can establish some historical facts on ownership and service that may increase value.

February 13, 2011, 08:41 AM
From a post by zonie on The Muzzleloading Forum Handguns subforum (this is my summary of his work) and in support of Hawg's post:

Remington's first large bore revolver was the Remington-Beals Army Model Revolver in 1860. It was marked “BEALS PATENT SEPT, 14, 1858...” It was a .44 caliber, 6 shot single action revolver with an 8 inch octagon barrel and was manufactured in 1861 and 1862. Although intended for the Army but they were not pleased with it and only bought about half the 2-3 thousand produced.

This first model had a frame that fully covers the threads of the barrel right up to the face of the cylinder. This allowed the fouling that develops on the front of the cylinder during the first few shots to rapidly lock up the cylinder inhibiting rotation and thus further firing. The cylinder did not have hammer safety notches machined into the rear.

They also built a Remington-Beals Navy Model in .36 caliber and with a 7 ½ inch barrel. It looks like the Army version but is slightly smaller. This gun is also marked, “BEALS PATENT SEPT, 14, 1858...”

The second model was designed to solve the cylinder locking problems. It was called the “1861 Army”, or the Remington Old Model Army. Remington redesigned the frame by adding a cutout area in front of the cylinder which exposes the rear of the barrels threads, allowing them to shear off the fouling as the cylinder rotates. Also, apparently to speed up reloading, the upper surface of the loading lever was removed to allow the cylinder pin to be pulled forward without lowering the loading lever. Unfortunately this also allowed the cylinder pin to move forward without the owner's knowledge. Many were returned to have a screw installed in the top of the loading lever to prevent movement of the cylinder pin unless the loading lever was lowered. Hammer safety notches first appeared on the later production versions of this pistol.

Production was about 9000 in 1862 and 1863, with about 7500 additional Navy models. Markings on these guns say, “PATENTED DEC. 17, 1861...”

The third model was introduced in 1863, called the New Model Army Revolver; it included all of the previous improvements. Production was over 122,000 from 1863 thru 1875, most of them being used during the Civil War. Although not in production until 1863 it is marked, “PATENTED SEPT. 14, 1858...” and has therefore become known to everyone as the “Remington 1858".

The smaller New Model Navy was produced from 1863 thru 1878, those made after 1875 being cartridge conversions.

For the full article, follow this link (http://www.muzzleloadingforum.com/fusionbb/showtopic.php?tid/241431/post/796849/hl/Remington/fromsearch/1/).

February 13, 2011, 08:44 AM
Thanks again. You guys had more info than trying to search on google. Just to put this up front I am not planning on selling it not clean it. I am taking it to an appraiser for insurance reasons, nothing more. I found photos at her house but haven't gone through then yet, so I have to do that. I know my grandmother was a daughter our grand daughter of the revolution our civil war so I believe it is a family heir loom. Need to research that as well.
Thanks again for the prompt and quick responses.
I have not seen the stamp on the two line barrell legend. I will look again.

February 13, 2011, 09:10 AM
I think that it will end up being worth more in the long run if it's properly cleaned, lubed and preserved.
I also think that the appraiser may want to take a peek inside of it too.
Many expensive and valuable guns are dissembled to take photos of the working parts for auctions.
It's risky for an amateur to do that, but how else does the condition and value get established without letting an expert look inside to examine it?
To maintain the value and to keep it from deteriorating further it will probably need to be preserved somehow.
Maybe rusty patina is desirable to some, but if someone else needs to have it professionally cleaned, restored or preserved on their own then that might reduce the value.
Especially if there's any rust and pits which can lead to further deterioration.
Contact an antique gun appraisal expert in your state that you can trust.
Nearly every state has an antique gun collectors association or a gun collectors association that can be located by Googling it for any state.
There should be appraisers within those groups that can give you good & honest advice.

February 13, 2011, 09:17 AM
Sorry if I wasn't clear in my post about not doing anything to this antique.
Let me clarify.
Don't have "just anyone help". By all means conserve & protect, but have it done by someone who is an expert in such things in preference to an amateur. There is a dual goal here to preserve both the integrity & value as well as the physical item.

February 14, 2011, 12:07 AM
I'm looking in the back of my Dixie Gun Works catalog where it gives info on serial #s etc. It's either a New Model 1863 Army or Navy.
Measure the barrel length. If it is 8" it is the 44cal Army. If it is 7 3/8" it is the navy in 36 cal.
Front sight: The Army had a narrow blade of steel that was screwed in whereas most Navies had a German silver cone for a front sight.
The chambers on the Navy should be about 3/8" diameter and the 44 about 7/16" across.
It says cartouches on left grip only B H stands for Maj. Benjamin Huger.
1863 NMAs serial #s go from 15,000-147,000 with the Navys being in the 23,000-45,000 range.