Rock Island Auction is set to offer a trio of desirable Colt wheel guns including a “Fluck” Dragoon, a military-marked Eli Whitney Walker and a civilian model fit for a Scandinavian skipper.
The rarest of the three, the only known original cased civilian Walker in circulation, is referred to by collectors as the Danish Sea Captain due to its first owner, Captain Niels Hanson, who purchased the gun in New York while in port and brought it back to Europe with him where it was passed down through his family and collectors in Denmark for over a century.
According to lore, the gun even survived being buried in a garden by its then owner during the Nazi occupation of that Baltic country during WWII. The estimated price for this rare bird, which has been extensively documented over the past 80 years? How about somewhere between $800,000 and $1.3 million.
Slightly more affordable but no less interesting is a gun made by Eli Whitney’s factory in 1847 to arm the newly formed U.S. Mounted Rifle Regiment.
The massive revolver — tipping the scales at almost 5-pounds in large part to its huge frame and nine-inch barrel — is one of just a handful of guns still in existence marked to the cavalry unit’s B company. Price? $110,000 – $160,000.
Rounding out the bunch is an 1848-vintage “Fluck” or “Pre-1st Model” Dragoon, of which some 300 were ordered to replace lost Walkers.
Still sporting a 7.5-inch barrel, the big .44 cap and ball gun was one of the first military contract pistols manufactured at Colt’s Hartford, Connecticut facility. It is estimated to bring between $14,000 and $22,500.
RIA is set to auction all three, along with more than 2,000 other collectible guns, in the upcoming April event.
Pro-tip for gun investing: find a time machine, go back to 1847/48 and buy all the Colts you can find.