November 3-4, 2017 Firearms & Militaria
Search By:
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 11/4/2017
Scarce original and correct First Contract North & Cheney pistol. Under 2,000 specimens are believed to be made by Simeon North and Elisha Cheney of Berlin, Connecticut between 1799 and 1802. Copied after the French Model 1777 pistol, it is the first official model of pistol adopted by the United States. In recent years, it has been determined that there were two contracts, this is a first contract as it was one of the first 500 manufactured, and the initials of the makers first names are included in the markings. This example is one of only a small number of authentic extant specimens. It features a tapered smoothbore steel barrel, stamped "US" and "V/P" near the breech. Correctly marked in all three locations with the serial number, in the correct font. Bottom of barrel marked with serial number "390, corresponding to the same numbers on both the breech plug's right side and inside the frame, where the barrel rests. Brass frame with lock on right side, brass pan, correctly replaced reinforced cock. The bottom of the frame stamped "S. NORTH & E. CHENEY BERLIN" in an interrupted curve around the front of the triggerguard. Brass triggerguard and buttcap, iron backstrap. All screws, with the exception of the barrel tang screw, have two notches and appear to original. Steel ramrod is a replacement. Partially figured one piece walnut grip with bulbous area on left side, opposite the lock, which can be seen on other early examples, as well. Complete with provenance, including Frisbie's list, dated 1982, with this pistol included in the form of a letter to James Frisbie from Gene Olson, about the addition of this pistol to his list. The letter states that he obtained the pistol in a trade from Mr. Blake, who purchased the pistol from a man in Wyoming many years earlier (prior to 1982). It did not have a cock or ramrod when it was found, so Mr. Blake had Red Jackson's gunsmith fit it with an 1808 North cock and make a ramrod, while it was being examined for an appraisal. Also, a copy if a list of known correct North & Cheney pistols dated February 23, 2004 on Paul A. Doyle Jr.'s stationary, and listing the numbers, owners and notes on each pistol. An appraisal is included, dated 1981, done by Leon C. Jackson of Jackson Arms in Dallas, Texas. The appraisal was done for Mr. L.F. Blake of Amarillo, Texas and states that this pistol is completely correct and in unusually good condition, with only the hammer, ramrod, and barrel tang screw replaced. Very good condition, in comparison to other known examples. Barrel and original steel components retain a dark, even brown patina with scattered areas of freckling and marks from use, very good clear markings are correct. Brass components retain a soft unpolished patina with scattered marks from use, excellent and deep markings. Grip has one small corner replaced on right side, near frame, otherwise very good with scattered marks form use and proper shrinkage. Overall, a very nice and authentic example in exceptional condition, and with great provenance!
Barrel Length
.69 Smoothbore
FFL Status
North & Cheney
Serial Number
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $13,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium: $33,825.00
Estimate: $50,000 - $70,000
Number Bids: 9
Auction closed on Saturday, November 4, 2017.
Email A Friend
Ask a Question
Have One To Sell

Auction Notepad


You may add/edit a note for this item or view the notepad:  

Submit    Delete     View all notepad items