Samuel Colt’s 1836-38 Patent Document Drafts for Auction

Samuel Colt’s 1836-38 Patent Document Drafts for his Colt Revolver up for Bid in the Goldin Auctions 2015 Winter Auction

Three patent draft documents for improvements to the Colt revolver hand-written and signed by Samuel Colt up for bid from January 12 through February 7, 2015 at

WEST BERLIN, NJ – JAN. 12, 2015 – Three documents that forever changed the firearm industry will be up for bids as the Goldin Auctions 2015 Winter Auction offers three rare document drafts that Samuel Colt submitted from 1836-39, to the U.S. Patent office for improvements to his Colt revolver.  The auction, which includes over 1,400 lots of sports, entertainment and historical artifacts is scheduled for January 12, through February 6, 2015at 

This historical archive include three of Samuel Colt’s patent drafts sent to Commissioner of Patents Henry L. Ellsworth. Written on watermarked laid paper, each is folded in half to 8″ x 13″.  All three are signed by Colt and address improvements to his original 1836 revolver patent. This historical archive is displayed in its own custom made 11″ x 14″ x 1 ¼ ” leather bound presentation case, complete with an inlaid gold-stamped illustration of a smoking 1836 Patterson Colt. It comes with three Letters of Authenticity from PSA/DNA and an LOA from University Archives signed by leading historical autograph expert John Reznikoff.

The first document, Lot #4,  asks to file a caveat with the Patent Office to prevent any other inventor from filing a patent based on his ideas. The document is hand written in black fountain pen and signed “Saml Colt”.

The second document describes in detail the various improvements he was currently working to develop. Among them are rendering the charges in the cylinder safe by giving free passage for the escape of the fire latterly from the cylinder” – in other words making the gun safe from accidental discharge of the other rounds when one is fired. Another improvement is “a lever wherewith to force the balls into the chambers of the cylinder” – the first revolver loading mechanism. After listing other improvements, Colt addressed a military belt but crossed out this addition and ended the draft with his signature “Samuel Colt”.

In the third draft document Colt describes two items that are meant to accompany his new revolver in the field – a bayonet and a case for carrying the caps that were used to fire the weapon. The draft is signed “Samuel Colt”. This document in particular shows how forward thinking the young man was. Just months away from patenting his revolver he was already addressing the need of its users in the field.

 “This is a spectacular offering for a collector of American historical documents or gun collectors,” said Ken Goldin, Founder of Goldin Auctions. “It’s a true honor to share these rare documents with collectors.”

High res images available upon request or can be downloaded directly from website

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