April 24-25, 2019 Extraordinary, Sporting, & Collector Firearms
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 4/24/2019
(1924 according to Westley Richards published serial number ledger) This exceedingly rare pair of guns based on pre-War miniature Westley Richards hand detachable lock actions have 28" dovetailed barrels gold inlaid "Westley Richards" behind a relief gold feather, and engraved "23 Conduit St. London Gun Makers By Appointment to HM The King" on ribs. There is shaded scroll engraving at breech ends of ribs which have dolls head extensions. Gold numerals "1" or "2" are on each rib denoting a true pair. There is a band of small gold beads around breech ends of barrels topped by 1 - 1/2" triangles of scroll. Bottoms of barrels are stamped with pre-World War II Birmingham nitro proofs for .410 and 7/16 oz shot. Barrel flats are stamped with 1971 Birmingham nitro re-proofs for 3" chambers. Case hardened exceptionally small ogee backed actions with hand detachable locks (patent use number 3431) under hinged floorplates, also feature automatic safeties (SAFE inlaid in gold), Westley Richards third fastener, and gold plated double triggers. Actions are engraved and multi-colored gold inlaid with a variety of flush flowers as background for semi-relief hummingbirds in various attitudes, obviously inspired by the fine art work of Martin Johnson Heade. The layout of the birds matches on both guns; left sides have birds sipping nectar from orchid blooms. Bodies of birds are gold, wings are white gold, some details are red gold, and others are in bright yellow gold. Details are similar on right sides of action, but with flowers at center of design flanked by birds. Floorplates are also fully inlaid with other hummingbirds in various attitudes in a field of flowers. All these scenes are accented and flanked by large semi relief gold feathers. Other hummingbirds are on trigger guard bows. Serial numbers are in gold on tangs. Well matched smoky marbled and lightly figured European walnut straight grip buttstocks measure 15" over checkered wood butts. Fancy fleur-de-lis checkering is at grips, and gold ovals on toe lines are engraved "D F". Matching Deeley ejector forends with inlet horn tips have Deeley releases. Guns are housed in relatively new leather two gun case with brass corners, embossed "D. F." on top. Interior is lined in burgundy cloth and has gold embossed black leather Westley Richards Conduit Street label in lid. Case has space for both guns, and contains cleaning equipment and two pairs of gold plated snap caps as well as the key. CONDITION: Excellent, as custom finished, retaining essentially all fine factory type finishes applied at time of re-proof. There is some minor lifting of red gold inlay at bottom of floorplate on gun number 2. These were originally high grade guns, and remaining original scroll engraving is somewhat softened. Bores are excellent. Mechanically excellent. Case leather is very fine with numerous chips along edges and some scattered marks. Straps are missing, handle is good. Interior cloth is very fine with some rubs and marks. Label is excellent. It is not known how many of these miniature actions were ever produced. Ron S. Gabriel in "American & British .410 Shotguns" does not picture or mention any known to him by this maker, so they must be exceedingly rare. The quality of the gold work is beyond compare. MGM176.
Name
Value
Accessories
Case, Tools
Barrel Length
28" (1&2)
Barrel Wall Thickness
Chamber
3"
Choke
diameters at muzzles (A) (L) .424 (R) .418 (B) (L) .418 (R) .415
Drop at Comb
(A) 1 - 7/16" (B) 1 -7/16"
Drop at Heel
(A) 2 - 3/16" (B) 2 - 3/16"
FFL Status
Curio & Relic
Gauge
(BOTH) .410 Bore
Internal Bore Diameter
Proofed at .420.
Length of Pull
15" neutral cast both
Manufacturer
Westley Richards
Model
SXS Best Droplock Pair
Paperwork
Weight
(A) 4 lbs 8 oz. (B) 4 lbs 11 oz.
Serial Number
(A) 18021; (B) 18022
Bidding
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $55,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium: $135,300.00
Estimate: $110,000 - $160,000
Number Bids: 10
Auction closed on Thursday, April 25, 2019.
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