Some firearms in the Frazier Museum, Louisville, KY
Be sure to visit!
The Frazier museum
has an astonishing collection of rare and historic arms, many from the
world-class personal collection of the museums founder, Owsley Brown Frazier.
What you see here is only a part of what the museum has on display and they
often rotate the exhibits.
In addition the
guns shown here, the Frazier Museum has an incredible collection of medieval
armor on loan from the Royal Armory and the Tower of London. I have some
pictures on Page 2.
Please do not
think that viewing my pictures are a substitute for a visit to this wonderful
museum. There is so much more to see. Be sure to visit the museum in person!
and Old West Guns
below the pictures.
Number 1 (first Model) ring-lever rifle. Patent Arms Manufacturing Company,
Paterson, New Jersey. .40 caliber. Serial # 2. The hammerless single-action
"rotary repeater" pictured here is the earliest known surviving example of a
Colt production firearm. The ring forward of the cylinder cocked the action
and turned the cylinder. Only about 200 were made. The military purchased 50
of them and issued them troops during the 1838 Seminole War.
Walker, .44 caliber, Serial # 1024. Whitney Armory, Whitneyville, CT.
Weight: 4 lb 9 oz. 1000 were made for the Army's Regiment of Mounted
Rifles (Dragoons) and 100 for civilian sale and presentation pieces. The
picture is one of the civilian models.
1864 Griswold & Gunnison Second Model Revolver,
Confederate. Griswold was the most prolific arms supplier of the
This weapon, a copy of the Colt 1851Navy type revolver, was
considered the best best quality Confederate pistols of the war.
J.H. Dance and Brothers "Army" Revolver, Confederate.
Columbia, Texas 1863-1865.
Dance made two models of the revolver, an
"Army" style in .44 caliber (above) and a .36 caliber "Navy" model.
were pretty much copies of period Colt pistols.
Spiller & Burr Second Model Revolver, Confederate. Atlanta or Macon,
GA 1862-1864. Spiller & Burr received contracts for 15,000 revolvers
modeled after the Whitney Arms Company's Second Model Revolver.
However, they only less than 1500 of them.
Patent Arms (Colt)
"Texas" Paterson Number 5 holster revolver with extra cylinder
Patent Arms Manufacturing Company. Paterson, NJ. .36 caliber,
Serial # 23.
Only 1000 were made. The Republic of Texas bought 180 of
This gun became legendary when Texas Ranger Captain J.C. Hays and
fifteen men armed with Paterson revolvers and rifles defeated eighty Comanches.
One of the rarest of Colt firearms. Only 12 American museums
The earliest models have a square back cylinder like this one
and only 33 of this type are known to exist.
Believe it or
not, the Frazier Museum has TWO Colt Patersons!
Patent Arms (Colt)
"Texas" Paterson Number 5 holster revolver with extra cylinder
Patent Arms Manufacturing Company. Paterson, NJ. .36 caliber, Serial # 200.
Engraved and blued steel, varnished walnut.
Patent Arms Number 3 Holster or Belt Model Paterson revolver, about
1837-1838. Caliber: .31 Serial number: 59
blued steel, varnished walnut.
and Belly Guns
Garland-style pocket revolver. Probably 1870s. English, French or
Belgian. .22 caliber rimfire.
Model 1 1/2 "Blue Jacket" pocket revolver, 1870s. Hopkins & Allen
Manufacturing Company, Norwich, CT. .22 caliber rimfire. Serial Number
Whitney Arms Model No. 1 Revovlver, 1871-1872. Whitney Arms Company,
Whitneyville, CT. .22 caliber rimfire. Serial Number 29359
Whitney Model 1 1/2 Pocket Revolver with ivory grips. 1871-1872. Whitney Arms
Company, Whitneyville, CT.
Engraved by Louis Daniel Nimschke. .32 caliber rimfire. Serial Number 6377B
Model 2 "Pepperbox" breechloading four-shot pistol, 1870s. Sharps Rifle Company,
Philadelphia, PA. .32 caliber rimfire. Serial Number 255.
Protector Palm Pistol, 1890s. Chicago Firearms Company, Chicago, IL. .32 extra
short rimfire caliber. Serial Number 9590.
Model 1 1/2 single-action revolver, probably 1880s. Belgian. .32 caliber rimfire.
Serial Number 12379.
Remington-Elliot "Double Barrel Repeater", 1880s. E. Remington & Sons, Llion,
NY. .41 caliber. Serial Number 9.
Standard Model New Line Revolver, 1876. Colt Firearms Company, Hartford, CT. .30
caliber. Serial Number 9527.
Remington-Elliot Double Derringer (Model 95) Type 1, Model 2, about 1869-1870.
E. Remington & Sons, Llion, NY.
.41 rimfire short caliber. Serial Number 525.
Marston three-barrel derringer, about 1864. William Walker Marston (New York).
.32 caliber rimfire. Serial Number 12.
Flintlock "turn-off" pocket pistol, 1813-1815. Joseph Simmons (Birmingham,
England). .31 caliber.
Manufactured at Waffenfabrik Mauser, Oberndorf am Neckar about 1900. Caliber:
U.S. Model 1843 (Hall Breechloader) carbine, 1850. Simeon North, Middletown, CT.
During the Mexican War, the 1st and 2nd Dragoon regiments were equipped with the
breechloading Model 1843.
Model No. 2 (Army) Revolver, 1865
Smith & Wesson, Springfield, MA. .32 caliber. Serial number
After firing, the shooter expended casings by "breaking open" the pistol,
pivoting the barrel vertically, removing the cylinder, and
pushing the open end of each chamber onto the short cylinder rod, thus forcing
the empty cartridge out the back of the cylinder.
Volcanic Navy lever-action pistol, 1855-1857
Volcanic Repeating Arms Company, New Haven, Ct. .41 caliber. Serial
In 1854, Smith & Wesson designed a metallic case for the rocket ball bullet, and
later, along with Benjamin Tyler Henry,
they redesigned the original rocket ball. Investors in the Volcanic Repeating
Arms Company, which was directed by
Oliver Winchester, bought out Smith & Wesson in 1855, but the company continued
to use their modified rocket ball
cartridges in it's Volcanic Pistols, produced under the supervision of Benjamin
First Model Smith-Jennings Rifle, about 1851
Robbins & Lawrence, Windsor, VT. .54 caliber. Serial number 1
Only about 500 were made. Pictured is the first serialized rifle. It featured an
automatic pill magazine
to dispense small balls of detonating compound for priming the rocket ball
Volcanic Lever-Action Carbine, 1857-1860
New Haven Arms Company, New Haven, CT. .41 caliber. Serial number 2975
The Volcanic Repeating Arms Company shifted production to New Haven in 1856 but
became insolvent a year later.
Oliver Winchester bought up it's assets and reorganized the company as the New
Haven Arms Company.
B. Tyler Henry then adapted the Volcanic pistol action to a carbine, which also
fired the metallic rimfire cartridges that he developed.
This paved the way for the famous Henry rifle of 1860 and the Winchester 1866
rifle and carbine.
Maynard Primed Belt Model revolver, 1851-1857
Massachusetts Arms Company, Chicopee Falls, MA. .31 caliber. Serial
Le Mat "Grapeshot" percussion revolver, 1862-1865
Charles Frederic Girard et Cie, Paris, France. .40 caliber.
Serial number 2014.
A combination of a cap & ball revolver and a shotgun, this unusual pistol had a
lower barrel loaded with buckshot, giving it it's nickname.
The Le Mat was a personal favorite of Stonewall Jackson and J.E.B. Stuart.
The Confederacy ordered several thousand of the pistols from Girard, but
problems with workmanship led to cancellation of the contracts.
Model 1851 Navy or belt pistol revolvers, 1856 and 1858, presented to Gideon
Welles (U.S. Secretary of the Navy 1861-1869).
Colt Firearms Company, Hartford, CT. .36 caliber. Serial numbers
62148 and 89493.
Samuel Colt called these revolvers "Navy" because he felt the Army would prefer
his larger Dragoon pistol, but in fact most Model 1851 Navy revolvers went to
the Army. This pair is very rare and important, not just because they were
presented to Gideon Welles, but because of the "USN" and anchor marks on the
The 1851 was Colt's most popular and durable percussion revolver. More than
200,000 were produced between 1850 and 1873.
Early Fourth Model 1851 Navy revolver, 1859-1860.
Colt Firearms Company, Hartford, CT. .36 caliber. Serial number
In 1860, Felix Tait, an Alabama cotton farmer, ordered a pair of Model 1851 Navy
pistols with unusually long barrels, together with cases and accessories (one of
which is shown above). The pistols were shipped to him in April 1861, and
presumably he took them with him when he volunteered later that year and became
a Major in the 23rd Alabama infantry.
Colt 1849 Pocket Revolver with case and accessories, 1866
Colt Firearms Company, Hartford, CT. .31 caliber.
Serial number 282947.
Despite the pistol's name, it was not introduced until 1850. These small pistols
were popular as privately purchased side arms among foot soldiers, and
they were often the sole defensive arms of fifers and drummers. It became Colt's
most popular percussion arm as more than 330,000 were made by 1873.
Manhattan Pocket Model revolver, about 1858
Manhattan Firearms Manufacturing Company, Newark, NJ. .31 caliber.
Serial number 7.
A competitor of Colt, the small Manhattan company did not win important
contracts during the Civil War
but concentrated on the civilian market where the Colt Model 1849 pocket
revolver was more successful.
Third Model "Army" front-loading revolver, about 1863
Plant's Manufacturing Company, New Haven, CT. .42-100 caliber.
Serial number 1621.
First patented in 1859, this unique revolver used special metallic cartridges
loaded into the front of the cylinder chambers.
Although not government arms, they were popular as personal firearms during the
U.S. Model 1855 pistol-carbine, 1855
Springfield Armory, Springfield, MA. .58 caliber. Serial
The first rifled regulation pistol adopted by the U.S. Army, this weapon was
intended for use as a handheld pistol while on horseback, or a
shoulder-fired carbine when on foot. It proved unsatisfactory in the field among
cavalry troops in the West and was doomed by the far superior Colt revolvers.
Model 1849 pocket revolver, 1868
Colt Firearms Company, Hartford, CT. .31 caliber.
Serial number 306571.
The most popular of Colt percussion pistols among Pony Express riders. Against
company preference, some riders carried an extra loaded cylinder.
Model 1873 Army single-action revolver, 1883
Colt Firearms Company, Hartford, CT. .44-40 caliber.
Serial number 99749.
One of the first weapons to use the new center-fire cartridges, this pistol
became known as the Peacemaker, a name that Colt began to use in 1874.
Other popular nicknames for this pistol include Hog Leg, Equalizer,
Frontier Six-Shooter, Thumb Buster and Plow Handle.
Colt first made the Model 1873 in .44 caliber and then rechambered it for .45
caliber at the Army's request in 1874.
Top: Sharps Model 1874 Sporting or "buffalo" rifle, 1877. Caliber: .45
Serial number: 159506
Middle: Springfield U.S. Model 1866, Second Model, "trapdoor Springfield" rifle.
After the Civil War, the government converted thousands of surplus arms from
percussion muzzle-loaders to single-shot breechloaders by adding a hinged cover,
or "trapdoor", over a chamber for inserting cartridges. Civilian hunters hired
by the Army also used the Model 1866, among them, Buffalo Bill Cody who
nicknamed his rifle "Lucretia Borgia". In admiration of the rifle's 600 yard
range, American Indians said that the Model 1866 could "shoot today and kill
Bottom: Marlin Ballard Deluxe Pacific Number 5 rifle, 1885-1886. Caliber:
.45-70 government. Serial number: 12446.
Remington Model 1875 Army, First Type, Second Issue, single action revolver,
Caliber: .44 Remington. Serial number: 79
Also known as the "Improved Army" or "Frontier Army", the Remington Model 1875
never achieved the success of Colt's Model 1873
Army single-action revolver as a cavalry pistol, but it was the preferred weapon
of the Indian Police of the Department of the Interior.
Remington New Model Navy revolver, 1866-1878. Caliber: .36
Serial number: 34549
After fire devastated Colt's production line in 1864, only Remington was able to
step in and fill government contracts. Although all of the New Model Navys were
intended for the military, about 2000 that did not meet federal specifications
found their way into private hands.
Remington Model 1871rolling block pistol, 1871. Caliber: .50-25
center-fire Serial Number: 1044
This powerful single-shot pistol was designed for the military, but soon after
the federal government received the first shipment in 1872, it adopted the Colt
Model 1873 revolver as the standard side arm. Many surplus Model 1871 pistols
were converted for civilian sport and target shooting.
Remington-Rider magazine pistol, about 1880. Caliber: .32 rimfire extra
Designed by Joseph Rider, this pistol held five shots in a tubular magazine
under the barrel. It was one of the first firearms with a tubular magazine for
metal-cased cartridges. Probably fewer than 15,000 were made. The exact number
is unknown because they were not given serial numbers.
Smith & Wesson Model 1 Second Issue revolver, 1860-1868. Caliber: .22
short rimfire. SN: 40208.
The seven-shot Model 1 was the company's first revolver and their first firearm
to use metal-cased cartridges.
The barrel tips up so the cylinder can be removed for loading and unloading.
Smith & Wesson Model 1 1/2 Second Issue revolver, after 1868. Caliber: .32.
Serial number: 41817.
More powerful than the .22 caliber Model 1 and streamlined for a quick draw from
a coat or trouser pocket.
Smith& Wesson Model 2 Old Model (Model 2 Army) revolver, 1864. Caliber:
.32 Serial number: 25539
Smith & Wesson did not introduce a military model until near the end of the
although they did privately market many of their weapons to servicemen.
Smith & Wesson New Model 3 revolver, about 1906. Caliber: .44 S&W Russian.
Serial number: 34096.
The "top-break" action allowed fast reloading and the use of more reliable,
powerful center-fire ammunition.
The New Modle 3 was known to be used by Annie Oakley, Buffalo Bill Cody, Teddy
Roosevelt and Wyatt Earp.
I am sorry to say that I did not get the details of this unique Colt.
I will have to look it up during my next visit to the museum.
Colt Model 1848 "Baby Dragoon" pocket revolver, 1849. Caliber: .31.
Serial number: 8069.
The Model 1848 was the first pocket revolver made at the new Hartford plant
after Colt's financial failure at Paterson, NJ.
During the gold rush, the Model 1848 retailed for $20-$25 in the East,
skyrocketed to nearly $300 in gold in the West.
Colt Third Model Dragoon revolver, 1860. Caliber: .44 Serial
Like the previous Colt Walkers, most Dragoon revolvers were made for the
military and were usually carried in a holster
over the neck of a cavalryman's horse. Some were fitted with detachable shoulder
stocks to permit their use as carbines.
Colt Model 1877 "Thunderer" revolver, 1907. Caliber: .41
Serial number: 163146
Colt Model 1877 "Lightning" revolver with retail box, 1888. Caliber:
.38 Serial number: 65782
Colt Model 1877 "Lightning" revolver, 1893. Caliber: .38
Serial number: 89231
Colt Model 1878/1902 "Alaskan" or "Philippine" double-action revolver, 1901.
Caliber:.45 Serial number: 48183
Advertisements referred to this large-framed pistol made in several variations
for particular markets as "Omnipotent", but it was prone to accidental discharge
and misfiring. After it was declared obsolete for military use, it was released
to the civilian market where at least some of these guns ended up as props in
Hollywood westerns during the 1930s.
Colt "Flattop" Target model single-action revolver, 1892. Caliber: .41
Serial number: 146540
Made from 1888 to 1895, fewer than 1000 of this model were produced, and fewer
than 100 in this caliber.
Top: Winchester Model1885 single-shot special target rifle, 1898.
Caliber: .38-55 Serial number: 47441
Winchesters first single-shot rifle and the first in series with John Browning's
breech design that featured a modified Sharps-style falling block action
activated by pulling down on the lever/trigger guard. The series included four
types of stock (rifle, carbine, military musket and Schuetzen), five barrel
weights, and 65 different chamberings.
Middle: Winchester Model 1866 carbine, 1891. Caliber: .45-70
Serial number: 59173
The origins of the Model 1886 lay in John and Matthew Browning's repeating rifle
patented in 1884.
Winchester bought the rights and further improved the weapon, which was made for
nearly 50 years.
Bottom: Winchester Second Model 1890 rifle, 1895. Caliber: .22 short
Serial number: 35136
This Browning-designed rifle, which replaced the unpopular .22 caliber version
of the Model 1873, became Winchester's best seller.
Winchester Model 1892 rifle with factory shipping crate, 1895. Caliber:
.25-20 W.C.F. Serial number: 106346
Between 1892 and 1941, Winchester produced more than 1 million Model 1892 rifles
based on John Browning's design.
Top: Winchester Model 1894 carbine, 1899. Caliber: .30 W.C.F. Serial
Winchester's first lever-action long arm built exclusively for smokeless powder
from another of John Browning's designs.
Still in production today, more than 3 million have been made.
Bottom: Winchester Model 1895 rifle, 1928. Caliber: .405 Winchester
Serial number: 421847
The Model 1895 was John Browning's last design for a large-caliber lever-action
The James-Younger Gang
Frank James Surrender
The last of Quantrill's men, including Frank James, put down their arms several
months after the Civil War officially ended. In an unusually lenient parole,
they were allowed to keep their horses and even their side arms, possibly as a
reward for having tracked down another guerrilla accused of rape. Frank, who had
broken an earlier parole, took no chances of receiving an automatic death
sentence for that infraction. He surrendered under the alias of "Alex James,
Company E. 3rd Missouri Cavalry".
Frank James Remington New Model Navy revolver. Caliber: .36 Serial
This well-used pistol with the missing front sight belonged to Frank James. It
may have been one he obtained late in the
Civil War, and it is possible that it is the one he was allowed to keep after
surrendering to Union Troops in July 1865.
Jesse James Colt Model 1873 Army single-action revolver, 1880. Caliber:
.44-40 W.C.F. Serial number: 61306
This handgun is said to have belonged to Jesse James at the time of his death.
It may be a pistol taken during the robbery of the military payroll at Muscle
Shoals, Alabama in 1881. Jesse's son gave it to a friend and it later found it's
way into the possession of Missouri Senator Harry B. Hawes. In 1939 it was shown
in Missouri's exhibits at the New York Worlds Fair. The James family tried
unsuccessfully to regain it, even calling on Henry Ford to act on their behalf.
Colt Model 1851 Navy or belt revolver, 1871. Caliber: .36
Serial number: 213204
An inquest determined that on the day Jess James died, there were at least 5
pistols in the house. This Model 1871 was almost certainly among them. It was
passed down through the family until 1994 when it and it's accessories were
acquired by a private collector.
Jim Youngers Smith & Wesson Model Number 3, Second Model single-action revolver,
1872-1874. Caliber: .44 Serial number: 16734
Gang members at Northfield carried two revolvers apiece, mostly New Model Smith
& Wessons, plus cartridge belts. This pistol is said to have been taken from Jim
Younger by posse leader Colonel T.L. Vought after the 1876 shoot-out at the
Sorbel farm near Madelia, Minnesota.
Smith & Wesson First Model "Baby Russian" single-action revolver, 1876-1877.
Caliber: .38 Serial number: 13813
This pistol was carried by Yankee Bligh, Louisville, Kentucky's Chief of
Detectives. Bligh was the first professional detective to track the James gang.
Modified Colt single-action revolver with elements from Models 1872 and 1873.
Caliber: .44-40 Serial numbers: 42870 and 6285
This pistol was carried by Texas Ranger Sebastian "Bass" Outlaw.
Colt Model 1873 Army single-action revolver, 1884. Caliber: .44-40 W.C.F.
Serial number: 111323
Carried by Texas Ranger Robert Ed "Jack" Bryant. During his long career, Jack
Bryant carried only this revolver and a Winchester Third Model 1873 carbine
unlike most lawmen who owned a dozen or more firearms during their careers. At
some point, Bryant had his pistol silver-plated.
Custer's Colt Model 1861 Navy revolvers with case and accessories, about 1863.
Caliber: .36 Serial numbers: 13511P and 13514P
Engraved by Louis Daniel Nimschke.
These pistols were reputedly presented to George Armstrong Custer during the
The suffix P of the serial numbers probably indicated that the pistols were to
receive a special factory polish, and the cylinders lack the customary naval
battle scene. The decoration, as well as the silver plating of the bullet mold
were probably not done at the Colt factory.
Bullard lever-action sporting rifle, about 1885. Caliber: .40-90
Serial number: 282
Presented to Buffalo Bill Cody by the manufacturer about 1885.
The left side of the receiver is engraved "Presented to Col. Wm. F. Cody by the
Bullard Repeating Arms Co." A silver buffalo head in relief appears on the top
of the receiver. This example is a "large frame model" of Bullard's rifle. James
H. Bullard was one of Smith & Wesson's top engineers and held three firearm
patents with Daniel Wesson and three in his own name.
Teddy Roosevelt's "Big Stick"
Holland & Holland Royal Grade Double Rifle with case and accessories.
Caliber: .500/.450 Nitro Express Serial number 19109
This rifle was made in 1908 at the request of well-known hunter Edward North
Buxton, a personal friend of Roosevelt. It was presented to Roosevelt by more
than fifty outstanding British conservationists and hunters in 1909 as he
prepared to set off on his Smithsonian-sponsored African safari.
Winchester Model 1892 once owned by Theodore Roosevelt, 1894. Caliber:
.44-40 W.C.F. Serial number: 53614
Winchester Model 1895. Caliber: .30-40 Krag. Serial number: 23576
This rifle was presented to Leonard Wood, Governor of Cuba, by Theodore
Roosevelt, Governor of New York, 1899.
Winchester 1892 Deluxe carbine, 1894 or 1895. Caliber: .44-40 W.C.F.
Serial number: 60909
This lavishly engraved "saddle-ring" Model 1892 bears a specially ordered gold
and nickel plated finish and custom mountings.
1. Spencer Model 1860 rifle. Inscribed "MM Lawrence of Co. H KY Cav."
2. Sharps rifle, 1862.
3. S.C. Robinson Arms First Model Sharps-type Carbine, Confederate, 1862-1863.
4. State Rifle Works Morse Carbine, Second or Third Type, Confederate,
Close-up of State Rifle Works Morse Carbine, Second or Third Type, Confederate,
Designed by a Northern gunsmith who adopted the Southern cause, this rifle was
built on machinery captured from the federal armory at Harpers Ferry.
Prentice Family Henry Rifle, 1865.
George Prentice was loyal to the Union and worked to arm the the Union's
Kentucky Home Guard. However, both of his two sons joined the Confederate Army
and both carried this rifle during their service. Family history states that
William Prentice was carrying this gun when he was killed in action.
Colt Model 1851 Navy or Belt Pistol Revolver, 1861
Colt Model 1860 New Model Army Revolver, 1862
Bowie knife with sheath. Unwin & Rogers, Sheffield, England.
Inscribed "Real Ripper to cut thro' all Kentucky Fashion".
Bowie knife and sheath, mid 19th century.
George Woodhead, Sheffield, England.
Civil War Medical Kits
Colt New Line Second Model Revolver, 1875. Caliber: 38 Serial
Engraved, nickel plated and gilded steel, mother of pearl grips. Case: Leather
covered wood, silk and velvet.
This may have been part of Colt's display at the Centennial Exposition in
Philadelphia in 1876.
Colt Hartford-London Third Model Dragoon Revolver with detachable shoulder
stock, about 1854-1856. Caliber: .44 Serial number: 279
Blued and case colored steel, silver-plated brass, walnut grips (restored).
The Colt Dragoon pistol was introduced in 1848 and produced in three models. The
weapons made for export bore serial numbers between 1 and 700. The parts were
made in Hartford and then shipped to Britain for assembly and finish in Colt's
London factory. This magnificent example is fully embellished in London factory
engraving - a treatment found on only 20% of the Hartford-London Third Model
revolvers. The Hartford-London Dragoon is one of the most desirable Colt
firearms among collectors.
Colt Buntline Special .45
Pair of Colt Model 1862 Police Revolvers with case and accessories, 1863.
Caliber: .36 Serial numbers: 23798E, 23800E
Engraved and silver-plated steel, ivory grips. Probably engraved by Colt master
engraver Gustave Young.
Presented to Lieutenant Alfred Haines by the men of Company D, 2nd New Jersey
Stevens Arms Number 52 Ideal "Schuetzen" rifle with telescopic sight, 1897-1916.
Caliber: .22 long rifle Serial number: 9331
Stevens Arms Number 54 Ideal "Schuetzen" rifle with telescopic sight, 1896-1916.
Caliber: .28-30 Serial number: 9420
Marlin Modern Luxury Guns
Early Guns -
1500s - 1700s
Kentucky Long Rifles
John Philip Beck .44 caliber flintlock long rifle presented to George Washington
Beck is regarded as one of the finest builders of long rifles and the most
important gun maker of his region.