Working Hopkins & Allen Revolvers, Part 1

A four-part series examining the once prolifically-produced Hopkins & Allen revolvers that are making a surprising comeback among collectors and cowboy action shooters.

by Brian R Smith

The current level of interest among firearms collectors in old, nickel-plated pocket revolvers of the 1880s through post-WWI is amazing. Online auctions and sale listings show these .22s, .32s, and .38s with asking prices of as much as $250 and higher, depending on the manufacturer. Hopkins & Allen was one of the most prolific manufacturers of inexpensive and often nickel plated pocket revolvers firing metallic blackpowder cartridges. At their peak, H&A produced thousands of handguns annually under about 30 “house” trade names, in addition for other retailers under their private labels.

This series of four articles outlines design features and disassembly procedures for four basic Hopkins & Allen revolvers types: the spur-trigger single-action solid frame; double action solid frame; top break, hinged, self-extracting revolvers; and the top break, hinged, self-extracting Safety Police with its unique cam-operated hammer. This first article will cover background on the H&A spur trigger models.

Read more in the July 2020 issue.

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