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Old August 8, 2017, 12:23 PM   #1
jcoers
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Need help with identity

Hello,

I found this revolver in an old trunk I've had for many years. I know it's a Remington. 1858 Converted? Another year? Whitney Navy Converted? I just can't figure it out.

Any ideas would be very helpful!
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Old August 8, 2017, 03:18 PM   #2
James K
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It is not a Remington; it certainly looks like a Whitney Navy, converted, probably to .38 rimfire. The cylinder is not percussion and the rammer has been removed. It could be an original which was converted in the post-CW era. But my instinct on seeing a revolver like that with missing parts is to suspect a "kit gun" that someone got tired of when it turned out not to be easy to complete.

IIRC, Whitney copies, like others, were/are sold as kit guns and conversion cylinders/hammers have been available. Similar brass frame "Confederate" revolvers have also been sold.

What markings are present? If there are none, or if there are any indications that it is a repro (like Italian proof marks), the issue of age is settled.

Jim
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Old August 8, 2017, 06:27 PM   #3
jcoers
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Hello James,

The only markings I can find on the revolver are the serial number 10383 H B. It's on the frame under the trigger guard and on the trigger guard itself.

I agree, it appears to be a Whitney.
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Old August 8, 2017, 06:33 PM   #4
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Trigger Guard
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Old August 9, 2017, 12:20 AM   #5
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Is that a small crown stamped on the trigger guard between the forward screw hole and the serial number?
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Old August 9, 2017, 01:11 PM   #6
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I've been trying to figure out if that mark is intentional or a tool mark. I sent photos to Dan Williams - he wrote a reference book on the Whitney Revolver a few years ago. I'm hoping he can shed some light on that mark.
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Old August 10, 2017, 12:25 PM   #7
Mike Irwin
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It doesn't look like a tool mark, it looks like a casting mark.
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Old August 10, 2017, 04:15 PM   #8
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The serial number with two letters is correct, The serial should also be on the bottom barrel flat and inside the grips. The top of the barrel should be marked E. Whitney N. Haven
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Old August 11, 2017, 10:23 AM   #9
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I checked the serial number with Dan Williams. He said it's one of the lowest serial numbers he's seen on a conversion from Whitney. His book is supposed to arrive next week, so, hopefully I will know a lot more about this revolver soon.

The finish all over the pistol is so worn that I can't make out any stamping on the top flat of the barrel. The bottom flat, near the frame, shows the last three digits of the serial number and an "X". I'm looking closely for a "B" stamped on the frame near the barrel - that would be a military proof mark. The serial number, according to Dan, is within range for use as a Union Army pistol.

Hope to know more soon!
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Old August 11, 2017, 10:34 AM   #10
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The pistol belonged to my Grandmother's first husband. He traveled with Bill Cody's Wild West. Here's a picture of the revolver along with his saddle bags and hat.
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Old August 19, 2017, 10:47 AM   #11
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Fully identified now...... In case you run across one.

The revolver in question turned out to be an 1857 Whitney. According to Dan Williams' book, this one was manufactured in 1862. There were approximately 35,000 of them made. This one was converted to .36 rimfire after the war.

Thank you, everyone, for helping me figure this one out.
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Old August 19, 2017, 12:26 PM   #12
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Very neat. What did the conversion do to the value?
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Old August 19, 2017, 01:42 PM   #13
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I'm not really sure on the value yet. If I can, somehow, establish which Army unit the pistol was sent to, I have a good idea of how it made it's way to me. (The brother of my Grandmother's first husband fought for the Union during the Civil War).
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