A scarce American civil war era .31 calibre 5 shot Percussion revolver made by E. Whitney. Circa 1860. The 6 inch barrel marked on top E. WHITNEY N. HAVEN. Two piece walnut grips and brass trigger guard. Eli Whitney Sr. established his Whitneyville Armory in 1798 and produced firearms (among other things) by contract for the United states government. Just prior to this in 1793, Whitney invented the mechanical cotton gin, which dramatically changed the economic landscape in the United States, namely in the South. His labour saving device made the processing of harvested cotton extremely efficient and requiring fewer labourer's. This machine caused the market for cotton to explode and more labourer's were needed to plant, grow and harvest the crop. This resulted in a corresponding boom in the Southern slave trade. Great fortunes were created, and the population of the South became such that one in three Southerners were slaves. All this provided the fuel that would become the American Civil War. Eli Whitney died in 1825, and his son, Eli Whitney Jr began running the family business in 1841. In 1847 Whitney Jr. began to manufacture 1,000 of Samuel Colt’s latest revolver the Colt Walker revolver. Production of this revolver helped both parties immensely as it kept Colt in business and it allowed Whitney Jr. to gain experience making revolvers. With the expiration of Colt’s patents in 1857, Whitney began production of percussion revolvers based on Colt’s patents, some of them very closely copied. The Whitney Revolver were produced at the Whitneyville Armory manufacturing centre in the Whitneyville section of New Haven, Connecticut from the late 1850's through to the early 1860's. Many of these were purchased by individual soldiers for use when they were going off to the American Civil War. Overall length 11 inches. In good overall condition, showing some signs of use and wear. A true authentic civil war era percussion revolver. Ref 3619.
This is an obsolete antique pistol and is sold as a collectors item only.
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