Antique SMITH & WESSON 32 1-1/2 1st Issue Revolver
Early WILD WEST Cartridge Revolver for Self-Defense!
Here we present an antique Smith & Wesson Model Number 1-1/2 .32 First Issue Revolver, made circa 1865 in Springfield, Massachusetts. The No. 1 was Smith & Wesson’s first metallic cartridge firearm. It utilized the idea of the “bored through cylinder”, which was patented by Rollin White and subsequently exclusively licensed by Smith & Wesson. This concept has forever changed revolving firearms design, and is the same idea used in revolvers today. S&W, via Rollin White himself, aggressively sued any patent infringers and were able to hold their monopoly on the American market for cartridge revolvers from about 1857 to 1870, whereupon their patent expired. The results were a very profitable business, a broke Rollin White, and a grudging U.S. Chief of Ordnance Alexander Dyer, who was still angry in 1870 about not being able to use the technology during the Civil War. The U.S. government ended up giving Colt their contracts since they valued the larger .44 caliber in the Colt 1860 Armies over the .32 caliber full sized No. 2 Armies.
The S&W Model No. 1-1/2 Revolver is simply a scaled-up version of the No. 1, down to the aesthetics. The .32 continued to evolve just as the .22 version, both in features and aesthetics. It was also a commercial success and was well-received by the buying public seeing 26,300 of the First Issue produced and over 100,000 of the updated Second Issue.
The overall condition is good. 40% of the original blue finish remains. The markings are legible. The rosewood grips have some old chips and dings from the period of use. The bore is clean with good rifling. The action on this revolver is strong. The cylinder stop assembly is absent.
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 3-1/2 inches.
Caliber: .32 Rimfire
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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