The Rock Island Auction Company broke the record for selling the world’s most expensive firearm. The company sourced and auctioned a Colt Model 1847 Walker revolver, with its original case and accessories for $1.84 million dollars.
A true “unicorn” gun, the Walker is one of about 100 known to exist and the only known revolver with its factory belongings.
“This is a major milestone in the collecting community,” said Rock Island president Kevin Hogan. “Not only is this a world record for a single firearm at auction, but further demonstration that the art and history in firearms is really catching fire. We value so strongly the aesthetics, history and craftsmanship of paintings, fine automobiles and watches, but firearms that possess those same traits remain remarkably undervalued.”
“It’s an exciting time to see the collector market making that discovery for itself and beginning to take advantage,” he added. The Walker includes a hand-written bill of sale by Colt.
The Colt Walker, also called the Walker Colt, was a collaborate design by Army Captain and Texas Ranger Captain Samuel Hamilton Walker and legendary gun maker Samuel Colt.
Today the name Colt is synonymous with firearms but in 1846, when Walker first proposed the design, Colt was out of business. Walker’s proposal reignited business for Colt, contributing to the company’s namesake to this day.
The Colt Walker was and still is the most powerful black powder repeating handgun ever made for military use. Originally only 1,100 Walkers were produced, with 1,000 for the military and 100 for commercial promotion and sale. This gun was one of the 100 made for the public.
It was the most powerful production revolver for nearly a century until the invention of the .357 Magnum. A significant number of the first Walkers were simply consumed by their own powder charges. At least a quarter of the initial run was returned for ruptured cylinders and chain-fire issues.
Still, the Walker’s ability to deliver a one-shot kill to a man on horseback, or even a horse if necessary, created a legend. By pushing the limits of what a revolver could do the Walker created new standards and doctrines that people maintain when shooting black powder guns even today.
Finding an example with all of its original appointments more than 150 years after it first sold is worth celebrating. For more information about this and other fantastic auctions visit the Rock Island Auction website.
Even if I won the Mega Lottery would I spend that much for a gun! Grumpy