The Sundial Cannon-This sundial gun is of marble, brass & glass construction dating from approximately 1850. The cannon is a brass mini fixture with a .30 ca bore. As the sun moves across the sky, the beam is narrowed through the suspended glass lens gnomon & travels along the stone etched arc, ticking off the hours at each pass. At Noon, the sun’s rays land on the cannon’s breech, sparking a powder charge previously placed in the trough-shaped touchhole.
Dreyse Revolver - While his father’s zundnadelgewehr (needle-gun) was only a single-shot – Franz von Dreyse went for repeating capability with his revolver design. Made in .32, .35 and our example’s .39 caliber in the late 1860s; perhaps this wasn’t the best time to offer a handgun that required a long needle firing pin to detonate the primer deep inside the cartridge? The Dreyse revolver saw limited military and commercial acceptance. At the NRA National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, VA
Colt M1862 Police revolver - 150 years ago, the Colt factory had a bad day. It burned down. Believed started by Confederate agents, the Colt fire in 1864 put a real crimp in the company’s percussion revolver production for the remainder of the year. But one gun that didn’t burn up in Hartford, CT was this engraved Colt .36 caliber revolver. This five-shot handgun probably sold for an elevated price in the high demand market of 1864. At the NRA National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, VA.
Ann Patrick Double Rifle - Our GOTD is a percussion double rifle built by Ann Patrick of Liverpool. With big .70 caliber bores, this double rifle was likely manufactured when Ann Patrick had her shop from 1820-1830 at 44 Strand Street and was the daughter of Jeremiah Patrick, a noted flintlock gunmaker of Liverpool. The unique engraving on this piece also gives you the chance to see something looking back to you when you examine the patchbox. At the NRA National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, VA.
Joalland Needle-fire pistol - This all-metal Louis Joalland pistol was made in Bourges, France and like the Dreyse rifle, this handgun is a single shot design, opening by twisting to the right and pulling back to insert a cartridge into the chamber. The engraving on this pistol includes stylized griffins amidst the raised scroll embellishments. The blackpowder propellant of that period was fairly corrosive. This .40 caliber handgun, on display in the National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, VA.
Pendrill Breechloader - What appears to be a large rear sight is actually a circular breechblock plug that can be twisted for removal. To load, the plug is removed and a ball dropped in to seal the front of the chamber. Then the desired powder charge is added behind the ball for this .67 caliber firearm. But this unusual flinter is also remarkable for its proofing, as this one bears an early private provincial mark. At the NRA National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, VA.