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MOLINE, Ill. — Rock Island Auction Company announces a Premiere Collector’s Firearms Auction to be held Dec. 3-5 at their facilities in Moline, Ill.
This auction is a study in the history of firearms production. It encompasses the spectrum of collecting from ancient and early antique European arms to substantial collection of modern sporting arms. The collecting favorites of Winchesters and Colts will be well represented with several of the finest known and low serial numbered examples. Rock Island auction will once again present an incredible selection of military items from the U.S. martial era to U.S. and foreign arms from World War I and World War II.
Several museum quality Colts will be sold. Center stage will be the finest known condition original presentation Colt Single Action Army Buntline and stock with Hegeman and Stagecoach Museum provenance. This revolver is accompanied by a notorized letter from Osborne Klavestad from the Stagecoach Museum in Shakopee, Minn., identifying this revolver by serial number as being one of only two Buntline 16-inch revolvers that were set aside to be presented to Colt employees and never appeared on the common market.
The letter goes on to state that the gun was found hidden behind some books in an estate in Hartford and “is probably the finest specimen in existence today, being mint, original, unfired and complete with stock.” The revolver was presented to Colt’s head librarian (bookkeeper) in 1895, was part of the J.R. Hegeman collection and then went on to the Stagecoach Museum in Minnesota in 1928. It was then purchased by Stanwick in 1978. This spectacular piece carries a presale estimate of $250,000 to $500,000.
A comprehensive grouping of more than 550 Colts will be offered from the early Patersons through WWII semi-autos and slide action rifles. Seven Patersons will be offered. Another museum-worthy piece, holding an estimate of $100,000 to $200,000, is Colt’s first cartridge revolver, an extraordinary first cartridge production Colt Open Top 44 revolver, serial number 1.
The United States military is represented from the Revolutionary War to WWII. The best martial arms collection RIAC has ever offered is well represented by an extremely rare North & Cheney U.S. Model 1799 Flintlock pistol — one of only about 20 surviving examples ($50,000-$70,000) and an exceptionally rare S. North dueling pistol from the estate of Simeon North ($35,000-$55,000).
A rare piece of history is found in a massive documented historic U.S. Garrison flag that was flown at the Lincoln-Douglass debate at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill. The Oct. 7, 1858, event was a part of a series of debates that focused on slavery in the expanding U.S. The flag measures a massive 12 feet 6 inches by 20 feet 6 inches and now has a total of 36 stars (three were added after the historic debate).
More than 100 Civil War arms will include a rare Confederate J.P. Murray percussion rifle and fine carbines featuring an extremely rare Jenks-Merrill breech loading percussion carbine, one of only 300 produced.
Moving through history brings a nice selection of trapdoors, Krag rifles and Colt early autos from the Indian Wars, Spanish-American War and WWI. Notable examples include an outstanding Springfield Armory Model 1875 U.S. trapdoor officer’s rifle ($25,000-$37,500) and rare and desirable U.S. Springfield rod bayonet Model 1903 rifle ($9,000-20,000). An exceptional Colt Model 1902 (Military) Automatic pistol estimated at $11,000 to $18,000 is just one of the 100 Colt early autos in this auction.
The U.S. WWII items in this sale are amazing, including a historic A-2 flight jacket of General Douglas A. MacArthur ($100,000-$200,000) and a historical “one-of-a-kind” serial number “1” Singer Mfg. M1911 Semi-Automatic Pistol ($55,000-$95,000), one of two Singers in this auction. A magnificent one-of-a-kind “turn-key” display of an all-original WWII Winchester “T3” Carbine with original first pattern M-2 infrared sniper scope and accessories carries a $15,000 to $30,000 estimate. This section will also bring two rare Savage Military model 1907 semi-automatic trial pistols to the auction block.
Part II of the William Ashby collection leads yet another astounding selection of WWI and WWII European and Japanese Military including more than 50 sniper rifles, 15 Krieghoff Lugers, more than 50 PP/PPK pistols and 13 rare Bergman pistols. Some German highlights include a factory engraved, gold inlaid Walther model PP pistol with presentation NSFK dagger and capture papers ($10,000-$20,000), an exceptional WWII Nazi K98 Mauser Turret style sniper rifle with Schneider scope ($12,000-$16,000) and an extremely rare engraved WWII “50th Birthday” presentation Vierling from “Die Fuhrer to the Group Commanders of the Supply Troops” 1943 ($10,000-$30,000).
Other European Military includes a “one-of-a-kind” serial number 0034 “1936 dated” Polish RADOM Model V15 35 presentation pistol with gold inlaid slide inscription. Japanese Military includes three Baby Nambu’s, rifles, and an outstanding, complete all matching WWII “Grandpa Nambu Pistol Rig” with matching magazine and super rare matching combination wooden shoulder stock/holster and leather shoulder strap with an estimate of $16,000 to $25,000.
German memorabilia is also a noteworthy section in this auction including a scarce Nazi general officer’s uniform set with jacket, hat, pants, belt and boots and a Nazi Knights Cross to the Iron Cross with presentation case and papers. A highly attractive Prussian Gardes Du Corps helmet holds a pre-auction estimate of $10,000 to $15,000.
The December auction contains many fine derringers, pepperboxes and curio-type pistols including a pair of factory engraved Colt third model derringers with presentation case ($14,000-$22,500) and engraved Remington type II over and under derringer pistol with case ($9,500-$13,000).
In its entirety, more than 2,700 quality lots will be offered Dec. 3-5 by Rock Island Auction Company. There is something for nearly every level of collector and certainly many genres of firearms to choose from. The December auction is cataloged in a full-color two-volume catalog, which can be ordered through the mail ($60) or viewed online at www.rockislandauction.com. Rock Island Auction Company is currently seeking consignments for their future auctions. ?
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• Now more than ever, it pays to know what your firearms are worth—and 2010 Standard Catalog of Firearms is your best guide to the exciting, but often confusing, world of collectible firearms. Learn more at shop.collect.com.