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Thread: pistol info

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
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    ORYGUN
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    1,392

    Re: pistol info

    I have a 1849 Colt "pocket" pistol. Anybody have anything to say about Cimmeron?
    Last edited by hireddutchcutthroat; 12-23-2011 at 02:56 AM.
    Robert Johnson

    "Them fellers out thar you ar goin up against, ain't none of the blue-bellied, white-livered Yanks and sassidge-eatin'forrin' hirelin's you have in Virginny that run atthe snap of a cap - they're Western fellers, an' they'll mighty quick give you a bellyful o' fightin."



    In memory of: William Garry Co.H 5th USCC KIA 10/2/64 Saltville VA.

  2. #22

    Re: pistol info

    Doesn't EoG say that the British revolvers were the most common revolvers seen in the Confederate cavalry? I can't say that I've ever seen one in today's cavalry impressions. I think the original question that Paul posted was about what pistol would be the best choice. I guess it largely depends on whether or not you do mostly Union or Confederate. Like anything else, there probably isn't a one-size-fits-all solution. If I was doing Federal and Confederate, I'd absolutely avoid the Remington like the plague. I'm not sure if the Colt navy was issued to Federal mounted troops, but I've seen several primary sources that mention how popular the navy was in the Confederate ranks. So, overall, if you're trying to do both, then the Army is probably the best option, though not a perfect fit.

    Jerry, I'd think that if an individual did report to duty with pistols from home, they'd have been as varried as the men themselves. The best way to approach that question is to question what was most popular in the civilian population at the time. Would the average citizen have had access to or a need for most military issue weapons? The dragoon wasn't overly popular with the dragoons themselves, so that may need to be considered. The smaller "police" and pocket model colts may have been more popular. If I had to guess, I'd put my money on the older models like the Colt navy, the Patterson, and a host of other pistols, especially single shot models.

    But when we start talking about the "carried from home" theory, we have to be careful. Just because they brought a particular item from home when they enlisted doesn't mean they kept it very long. The government was still responsible for supplying ammunition and uniformity of supply was a huge concern. I've seen multiple diary entries over the years of troopers sending revolvers home. Just as many sources indicate that even in Texas, where modern conception is that pistols were in the hands of everyone, there were still large numbers of men who enlisted in the cavalry with no arms at all. Uniformity would have been a major priority after the first few months of the war. JMO.
    Larry Morgan
    Buttermilk Rangers

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Dickson, TN.
    Posts
    1,145

    Re: pistol info

    Jerry,

    Good info and question!

    Yes, you would be on solid ground with those early revolvers, especially if doing a Trans-Miss or western theatre impression. My personal imput/preference, however would be no more that one of whichever of those you document/select. I know that the Texans speak often of multiple side-arms and I know that it did occur, but just as Will Mc. shared with us in his findings, the reports just don't bear it out (East or West) with any frequency. So, as we state so often, one should build one's impression around the common rather than the exotic/exception.

    regards,
    Mark
    J. Mark Choate
    7th TN. Cavalry, Co. D.

    "Let history dictate our impressions.......not the other way around!"

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    IL
    Posts
    124

    Re: pistol info

    And to complicate this even more, some inspection reports show that some Confederate men did not always have pistols. At some events this year, I did not carry one when I did Confederate. I have only seen one man at an event have a Adams pistol, but he never even uses it at the event.

    Pvt. Philip Brening

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    92

    Re: pistol info

    Thanks guys, those are the responses I figured I'd get. I sort of threw that out there because it seemed like the elephant in the living room and I figured there might be some other people thinking it too.

    Someone posted the arms of a western theater Federal cavalry unit just recently that showed their arms to be a mix of two types of .36 caliber revolvers. I want to say it was an Indiana or Illinois unit. I'll do a search to see if I can find it and post it here just for conversation.
    Jerry Orange
    Horse sweat and powder smoke; two of my favorite smells.

  6. #26
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    Re: pistol info

    Hallo!

    We moderns tend to ignore revolvers other than Colt or Remington Army's or Navy's.

    The Colt M1849 Pocket in .31 was second in production only to Colt's M1873 Peacemaker, with over 335,000 made. The Federal government purchased a number on the Open Market, and numbers of them are found with "US" and "USN" surcharges.

    By and large though, aside from officer type sidearms, they were stop-gap type options as the five shot (dangerously simply increased to six in 1860) .31 was a little anemic for military thinking/use as the .44's and .36's came to dominate both US and CS purchases. And yes, records show that not all CS cavalrymen had revolvers.

    I am working on an explanation of the evolution of the Colt/Iver Johnson/Italy triparty and the "Blackpowder Generations" and will get it up later today as I havbe to take my mom to the doctor's. Tis Modern Historically... complicated especially with the use of Italian parts and Iver Johnson doing the assembly/making and marketing the product as "Colt" or the modern version of "Colt."

    But, Cimarron Firearms is an easier reply.

    The Italians sell or contract out their products according to the amount of "Quality Control" a company or importer needs in order to be able to sell their product at their desired price. The fit of parts, the finish of wood and metal, the clean-up of cast parts, the hardening or tempering (or lack thereof) of investment cast parts (springs or sears for example), vary AND vary within the "range" dependng upon how much or how little QC is involved.
    In brief and to over geenrlaize... that is why one lad getting a Brand X loves it, and the next lad has a piece of junk that may not even cycle or the cylinder turn, etc., etc.

    Cimmaron Firearms contracts for the high/higher end "QC'd" Italian stuff. And it is reflected in their higher pricing. Not that they do not have some random and rare problems within their range of QC.

    That being said, I personally have always bought my cap-and-ball and metallic cartridge revovlers and rifles from Cimarron.

    Curt
    In gleichem Schritt und Tritt, Curt Schmidt

    -Hard and sharp as flint...secret, and self-contained, and solitary as an oyster.
    -Haplogroup R1b M343 (Subclade R1b1a2 M269)
    -Pointless Folksy Wisdom Mess, Oblio Lodge #1
    -Vastly Ignorant

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    92

    Re: pistol info

    Found it! It stuck out to me because there were a couple of different pistols noted but they were all .36 caliber and I thought at the time that keeping them all the same caliber was logistically smart.
    I still agree that the .44 is best for general use.

    Re: 11th Illinois Cavalry...

    Mark, It appears that the Quarterly Ordnance Stores reports didn't begin for Illinois until the 4th Qtr. 1862 or at least that's where Arming the Suckers begins... it's a pretty through book, so if there is anything before that, I'm sure Baumann would have included it. So it appears what is listed below is what would have been on hand for Shiloh. Z

    Q.O.S. [11th] Cavalry 4th Qtr. 1862

    Sharps carbines.____________.52_______19
    Smith carbines._____________.50______339
    Colt revolvers.______________.36______222
    Remington revolvers.________.36_______36
    Whitney revolvers.__________.36_______45
    Dragoon sabers._____________________122
    Light cavalry sabers.___________________96

    Zack Ziarnek
    ill6thcav@yahoo.com
    Jerry Orange
    Horse sweat and powder smoke; two of my favorite smells.

  8. #28

    Re: pistol info

    I'm of the opinion that a pistol should be the very last "luxury" item a man should purchase in a Confederate impression. I think the documentation is overwhelming in support of fewer pistols being seen in the hobby. I know that if I show up at an event with no pistols, I'd still be in the minority so it helps balance out the numbers. In the rare occassion that we do get a new recruit, I don't encourage them to ever buy a pistol. I tell them horse equipment first, a good civilian or infantry longarm second, clothing third, and a few amenities like utensils, painted cloth, etc., third. I know that sooner or later they'll want a pistol and there will be times when they're needed (like a saber), but those impressions are few and far between.

    But I have been thinking lately of finally putting together a Federal impression and I must admit, the major thing keeping me from it is knowing that I'll need to buy a completely new set of weapons.
    Larry Morgan
    Buttermilk Rangers

  9. #29
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Hartselle, AL
    Posts
    23

    Re: pistol info

    Larry, having to get more guns is a GOOD thing ! At least that is what I tell myself.
    Merry Christmas to all !

    Chris Stewart
    7th Tennessee Cavalry, Co D

  10. #30
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    Re: pistol info

    Hallo!

    Colt "Generations..."

    Colt "Generations" are confusing because they are NUG a Colt M1873 "Peacemaker" evolution or history, but the blackpowder line has its own evolutionary path. Easy part first: "1st Generations" are the original production Colt Hartford usually always the "M1873." (1st Generation 1873-1941, 2nd Generation 1956-1974, 3rd Generation 1976 to present. With the odd ball Czech "Colt Cowboy' M1873 1999-2003).

    But, I will talk about the blackpowder line with it own generations- and yes original production arms are the "1st Generation." So, from here on, I will be talking about the BP line only.

    In 1971 Colt decided to reintroduce the M1851 Navy which was last made in 1873. Part of that was based on the success of pioneer Val Forgett of Navy Arms with his work in the mid to late 1950's, and partly due to the explosion of interest with the Civil War Centennial and the Uberti made revolvers appearing in the Italian "Spaghetti Westerns."

    But here is where a relatively unknown pioneer named Lou Imperato comes in. Between 1971 and 1973, Forgett sold Colt the rough castings used to make the new 2nd Generation." But in 1973 Colt was looking for a new supplier, and in stepped Imperato who had been Colt's biggest US distributor. That lasted until Colt decided to end the first series of percussion revolvers in 1976. In 1973. Imperato had purchased the Iver Johnson factory in Fitchburg, MASS and moved it to Middlesex, NJ. He approached Colt with the idea to produce the entire "line" of black powder revolvers arguing that the Italians had been doing it well since the late 1950's. Colt was interested, but still lacked production capability. With the Iver Johnson works, Imperato was in the right place at the right time with the right idea, and Colt signed on t launch the new "F Series" of the 2nd Generations with Lou Imperato as a subcontractor.

    Imperato had the hand-fitted/assembled stuff, but could not mass production. He had the barrels, cylinders, and back straps cas tin Italy (as Forgett had done). Imperato made the frames, center pins, cones, screws, springs, and built every one at the Middlesex facility to Colt standards. The finished revolvers were shipped to Colt at Hartford for final inspection and distribution.

    Next, Colt added the 3rd Model Dragoon, and brought out the M1860 Army in November 1978. (Colt would add the 1st and 2nd Model Dragoons in 1980.) The '60 Army remained in production until 1982 in various versions. The first though was the rebated cylinder version made November 1978 through November 1982; and with the fluted cylinder from July 1980 through October 1981. There were also a number of commemoratives and cased sets.

    In December of 1979 Colt introduced the M1862 Pocket Navy, and in January 1980 the M1862 Pocket Police. Also in September 1980, they introduced the M1861 Navy revolver, making them through October 1981.

    A new line of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Model Dragoons was added in 1980 as well- all three coming out in January. In June of 1980 came the M1847 Walker released as a limited cased set with R.L. Wilson's book.

    In 1979 a special edition of the M1848 Baby Dragoon was released, and between February 1981 and April 1982 it was made for general sale.

    Roughly around 1980/1981, while Imperato was churning out the 2nd Generations. a small number were diverted to the Colt Custom Shop "in the white" to be engraved by some of the masters working at Colt at that time (or shipped to American Master Engravers, Inc), and completed as finely engraved customs.

    Anyways, the "2nd Generation" (C Series and F Series) were introduction by Imperato at Iver Johnson for a little over a decade before coming to an end in 1982. So, that makes the Colt M1851 Navy, M1847 Walker, M1848 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Model Dragoon, M1860 Army rebated and fluted, M1861 Navy, M1862 Pocket/Police, and the M1862 Pocket Navy.

    Yes, they are NUG generally held to be "superb." And they have developed a culture and mythos all their own as to the " real Colt Colt" or more factually just Italian/Iver Johnson built and finished to Colt standards and with Colt only doing the marketing, selling, and distributing.
    But then that gets Modern Political as Colt went tout of business and into bankruptcy, and was bought out by foreign concerns who still run it as "Colt."

    So, the "2nd Generations" are colectable and controversial, but are "the best" revolvers out there- so one does pay extra when one shows up.

    Curt
    In gleichem Schritt und Tritt, Curt Schmidt

    -Hard and sharp as flint...secret, and self-contained, and solitary as an oyster.
    -Haplogroup R1b M343 (Subclade R1b1a2 M269)
    -Pointless Folksy Wisdom Mess, Oblio Lodge #1
    -Vastly Ignorant

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