Remington New Model Army With Clear Ainsworth Cartouche
- Product Code: FHG-2109-SOLD
- Availability: Out Of Stock
The Remington “Army” .44 percussion revolver was the primary competition to the Colt M1860 .44 percussion revolver during the American Civil War era. Although Sam Colt was the better salesman and marketer, Remington eventually beat Colt out of their military contracts by delivering a comparable (some felt superior) product for less money. In 1864, after the US government had finally beat Colt’s price down to $14.00 per revolver, they had been paying $20.00 or more per gun in the early days of the war, Remington agreed to furnish their “Army” revolver for only $12.00 per gun. That ended the reign of the Colt Army as the first choice for the Ordnance Department procurement officers.
In the field, even though the Colt revolver had the name and the mystique, many cavalry troopers preferred the much sturdier solid frame design of the Remington revolver. Approximately 106,000 Remington Model 1863 New Model Army percussion revolvers were purchased by US government during the American Civil War, with a total of approximately 114,000 of all types of Remington percussion revolvers purchased during the course of the war. Approximately 80,000 of these were purchased during the last two years of the war, between 1863 and 1865. According to the research published in Remington Army & Navy Revolvers 1861-1868 by Donald L. Ware, Remington revolvers through serial #149,000 were accepted prior to the end of the Civil War. Guns below serial #123,000 were accepted prior to the end of 1864.
The Remington Model 186 "New Model" Army percussion revolver offered here is in about VERY GOOD+ condition overall. This gun is serial number <b>101392</b> and was almost certainly manufactured and delivered in mid 1864. The matching serial numbers are located on the grip frame (under the left grip), and under the barrel (hidden by the loading lever). As is relatively common on Remington Army revolvers, the cylinder is not numbered and is simply marked with a large <b>H</b> inspection mark on the rear face of the cylinder. The grips are also pencil numbered to the gun on the inside, but the markings are very light. The gun retains some minute traces of the original blue on the frame and barrel, both of which have a mostly smooth, plum brown patina with some scattered surface discoloration from age and oxidation. The cylinder retains about 40%+ of its original blue, with the loss being the result of wear, flaking and age. One quadrant of the cylinder has very little blue, but the majority of the cylinder retains some very nice, streaky bright blue. The hammer retains traces of case colors which have essentially faded to a deep, smoky gray with traces of tobacco brown. The iron grip frame retains none of the finish and has a mostly smooth plum brown patina. The brass trigger guard has a lightly cleaned mellow golden color to it. The bore is in FINE condition and is mostly bright, with excellent rifling present. The bore shows some scattered patches of light surface oxidation, some frosting in the grooves and a small amount of lightly scattered pitting. All of the barrel edges remain sharp and the gun is fairly crisp overall, showing real world use but no abuse. There are a couple of minor impact marks on barrel and some minor scratches on the reverse of the frame, forward of the cylinder. These are all probably simply from carry, handling and use. All of the cones (nipples) appear original and are very good, usable condition. The action is mechanically excellent, with a tight lock up, excellent timing and indexing. The gun is profusely marked with military sub-inspector initials on all major parts, primarily the letters B, R, H, C and D all appear in various places. The top strap is marked in three lines:
PATENTED SEPT 14, 1858
E. REMINGTON & SONS ILION NEW YORK. U.S.A.
The top two lines are deeply roll marked, with the added “NEW MODEL” much weaker, but still legible. The grips are in NEW FINE condition, showing some scattered handling marks and dings, along with some minute chipped wear to the sharp leading and trailing edges of the grips. The left grip retains a very good and clear military inspector’s cartouche. The script initials are <b>OWA</b> and stand for civilian armory sub-inspector Orville Wood Ainsworth, one of the most famous and desirable of the mid-to-late 19thcentury US military inspectors. The bottom of the right grip also has a small, legible Cinspection mark on the bottom. As previously noted, both grip panels are numbered to the gun in pencil on their inside surfaces.
Overall this is a really attractive, crisp and sharp revolver that displays very nice, as it has an honest “been there, done that look”, without being a worn out or over used revolver. The gun is mechanically crisp enough and has a good enough bore to consider using on the firing line of the N-SSA pistol competition as well. This is a nice quality pistol that it would be at home in any Civil War pistol collection that needs no excuses, is a 100% complete and correct Remington New Model Army with a low enough serial number to have actually seen service, and likely fought during the last year of the war. It is a solid Remington Model 1863 New Model Army that will display well in any Civil War collection.