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Old July 4, 2012, 12:04 PM   #1
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Help with Derringer type gun

I have a small gun that was bought by my grandmother. The story is that my grandfather was gone working on the railroad a lot, during the 19-teens and early 20's, and my grandmother was alone with four children. She bought this small gun, which I know is called a four-shot "pepperbox". It is stamped with the name "Uberti" on one side, and "Hawes" on the top of the barrel. The serial number is only a four-digit number. I would like to know more about the company and this gun, but the only "Uberti" I've found online started his business in 1959, long after my grandmother would have even had a use for such a weapon! Also, I was 12 years old in 1959, and my grandmother was an old lady living with us. I would have remembered if our family (who used any guns minimally) had purchased it.
Anyone have any further information? I am confused because I am sure this gun is very old. Please email me directly, at and my name above, or reply via this forum, and I'll check back periodically.
Thanks all...
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Old July 4, 2012, 12:18 PM   #2
Jim Watson
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Unfortunately, you have a family story and you have a gun whose facts do not agree with the story.
Uberti is an Italian manufacturer best known for reproductions of historic US firearms, beginning with the Civil War Centennial in the early 1960s.
Hawes was an importer of various European firearms in the 1950s and 1960s.

What you have is a modern reproduction of the Sharps 4-barrelled derringer, and nothing that would have been available to your Grandmother ca 1920.
Those little guns were quite common while I was in highschool and college (I am your age +2) but should not be mistaken for originals.

Obviously Grandma was more active in guns than you thought.
Be interesting to see what she really had in her younger years.
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Old July 4, 2012, 01:01 PM   #3
James K
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I hesitate to raise the possibility, but it has happened that someone in the family takes an old and valuable gun and substitutes a modern replica with no one noticing the swap.

Jim K
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Old July 4, 2012, 01:22 PM   #4
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^ JamesK may have the best answer. it's not a thrilling suggestion and it does raise a lot more questions but that's about the only way I could think that a 100 year old handgun could turn out to be a 50 year old replica
ignore my complete lack of capitalization. I still have no problem correcting your grammar.
I never said half the stuff people said I did-Albert Einstein
You can't believe everything you read on the internet-Benjamin Franklin
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Old July 4, 2012, 02:30 PM   #5
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I have a pre-1968 German made Hawes P-25 .25 ACP Semi-Auto Pocket Pistol. The Hawes pistols have very little resale value, mine is in the $100+ range and I paid $60 for it. It is the typical short barrel mouse gun fairly accurate up to 10 yds.
Based on my research on the history of my gun your derringer was most likely imported by Hawes Firearms company based in Van Nuys, CA. until the late 50‘s. Most of the guns were made by J.P. Sauer & Sohn in Eckernforde, Germany.I have seen a several Hawes .22 cal magnum derringers at past auctions and gun shows here in south Florida, they sold in the $100+ range.
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Old July 29, 2012, 11:34 PM   #6
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What caliber is this pepperbox?
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Old July 30, 2012, 01:19 PM   #7
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" What caliber is this pepper box?" They are usually called a Sharps derringer and Uberti only produced them in .22
Ron James
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Old July 30, 2012, 01:32 PM   #8
Bill DeShivs
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The Uberti was made in .22 short.
Since it says "Uberti" on the gun, it was obviously not made in Germany. Aldo Uberti was an Italian manufacturer. The Sharps copy was imported until 1968.
Bill DeShivs, Master Cutler
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