Category: Hand Guns
Facts about Colt Peacemaker (M1873) Gun.
The Colt Peacemaker, also known as M1873, Model P and Single Action Army (SAA), is the single action revolver that is believed to be the gun that actually “won the west.” Distinguished by its power and reliability, the gun is well-known for being the most popular full-sized revolver in the late 1800s.
The revolver was specifically designed for the United States government’s revolver tests of 1872 by the Colt Firearms Ma
nufacturing Company. It was adopted the same year as the standard revolver for military service until 1892, when it officially got replaced by the Colt Model 1892.
Restricted by Rollin White’s patent, Colt could not get on with the development of a bored-through cylinder revolver with a metallic cartridge until the 4th of April, 1869. To come up with this design, Colt had to involve two of their best engineers: Charles Richard Brinckerhoff and William Mason, all of whom had previously developed several revolvers and black-powder conversions for Colt. They were to direct all their effort to the 1872 revolver trials.
In 1872, the M1873, alongside Smith & Wesson’s M3 “Schofield,” replaced Colt M1860 Army percussion revolver. However, Colt gained too much favor from the US government; as a result, the M1873 revolver was adopted as the main military revolver until 1892 when Colt Model 1892 was introduced.
By late 1874, the guns produced had actually stretched to serial number 16, 000; out of this, 12, 500 SAAs, chambered for .45 Colt cartridges, were already in service while the remaining 3, 500 were being sold in the civilian market.
The engraved pieces
Colt engraved only a few pieces of their first M1873 generation. They were in fact less than 1 percent of their total production. At that time, the engraved pieces could only be ordered by the famous member of the society, including heads of state, lawmen, and captains of industries. In actuality, this tradition had been started by Samuel Colt, who frequently used the aforementioned examples as a publicity stunt for Colt Company.
As for the second generation, only 400 pieces were engraved. Colt’s team of engravers at that time included Steve Kamyk, Robert Burt, Earl Bieu, Alvin Herbert, and Leonard Francolini.
M1873 comes with a six-chambered cylinder with standard-length flutes, solid steel frame, steel trigger, steel back strap, as well as a wooden grip that hangs loose on the frame. Also noted is the knurling on hammer, framed and inverted in a U-shape.
All the first M1873 prototypes were produced in .44 American calibers for the 1872 trials, as it was the same type of cartridge that Smith & Wesson used on their Model 3 revolver. But after the test, the SAA emerged superior and the US government specified that the revolver would best operate with the .45 caliber. This made all the SAA produced as of 1873 to be chambered for the .45 caliber instead .44 calibers as it used to be.
The handling qualities, accuracy and power of the revolver have successfully made the revolver one of the most popular sidearm since inception. In fact it is for this very same reason that the revolver is actually the preferred firearm for the gunslinger antagonist in the Metal-Gear-Solid video game—Revolver Ocelot.