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Antique Flintlock Pistols

The indelible image of a pirate is a scruffy cutthroat brandishing a cutlass and a flintlock pistol while yelling, "Arrgh, matey!" Their actual history is more involved. Muzzle-loading flash-powder weapons fired by a piece of flint striking cold steel, antique flintlock pistols are some of the most basic firearms in existence. French court gunsmith Marin le Bourgeoys created the first flintlock musket with a true flintlock mechanism for King Louis XIII shortly after he ascended the throne in 1610.

Despite being bulky and notoriously inaccurate with a short effective range, the flintlock musket caused substantial casualties for more than two centuries. The shortest were less than 6 inches long and the longest stretched to more than 20 inches in length.

Used as self-defense weapons and as military arms, flash powder-fired flintlock pistols like the Ketland brass barrel smooth bore pistol were common in colonial America. During the Revolutionary War, British soldiers carried the New Model 1760 flintlock pistol, a design that was quickly copied by American arms makers. The Model 1775 .62 caliber single-shot flintlock pistol is considered by some to be the first U.S. Army-issued handgun. Flintlock pistols enjoy continuing popularity with both collectors and black-powder shooting enthusiasts.

 

Quick Facts

  • An exceedingly rare U.S. Model 1799 North & Cheney flintlock pistol with a letter of authentication sold at a 2012 Rock Island Auction sale for $51,750
  • A pair of George Washington’s flintlock saddle pistols, later owned by Andrew Jackson, sold for $1,986,000 at Christie’s in 2002. The pistols are now displayed at Fort Ligonier in Pennsylvania
  • In October 2015, am American-made flintlock pistol and leather holster dating to the late 18th century sold for a steal at Skinner: $923
  • Other types of pistols include <a href=”https://www.invaluable.com/dueling-pistols/sc-0E2XTYTMGG/”>Dueling pistols</a>, <a href=”https://www.invaluable.com/antique-percussion-pistols/sc-J0QLMOSVZN/”>antique percussion pistols</a> and <a href=”https://www.invaluable.com/colt-automatic-pistols/sc-NZT4XAEZK1/”>colt automatic pistols</a>. Most have their own unique firing characteristics which makes them very desirable for collectors worldwide.

Recommended Items at Auction

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U.S. M1816 .54 Cal. Flintlock Pistol
Oct 22, 9:00 AM EDT
U.S. M1816 .54 Cal. Flintlock Pistol
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$3006 Bids
Two Contemporary Muzzle Loading Pistols
Oct 22, 9:00 AM EDT
Two Contemporary Muzzle Loading Pistols
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$1254 Bids
A pair of Ottoman gold-inlaid miquelet lock pistols, circa 1800
Oct 13, 9:00 AM EDT
A pair of Ottoman gold-inlaid miquelet lock pistols, circa 1800
by Oakridge Auction Gallery
Est: $1,000- $1,500
$8003 Bids
A Middle Eastern flint lock blunderbuss and musket, 18th/19th century
Oct 13, 9:00 AM EDT
A Middle Eastern flint lock blunderbuss and musket, 18th/19th century
by Oakridge Auction Gallery
Est: $300- $400
$1501 Bid
A. WATERS U.S. MODEL 1836 FLINTLOCK PISTOL.
Oct 15, 10:30 AM PDT
A. WATERS U.S. MODEL 1836 FLINTLOCK PISTOL.
by Turner Auctions + Appraisals
Est: $300- $400
$1501 Bid
Antique Moroccan Flintlock Pistol with Bone
Oct 11, 12:00 PM EDT
Antique Moroccan Flintlock Pistol with Bone
by Akiba Antiques
Est: $50- $500
$251 Bid
CHARLEVILLE 1811 FLINTLOCK PISTOL, .65 CALIBER
Oct 15, 10:00 AM CDT
CHARLEVILLE 1811 FLINTLOCK PISTOL, .65 CALIBER
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $600- $800
$4001 Bid
A PAIR OF 28-BORE FLINTLOCK DUELLING PISTOLS SIGNED OSBORN, LONDON, no visible serial numbers,
Nov 21, 10:00 AM GMT
A PAIR OF 28-BORE FLINTLOCK DUELLING PISTOLS SIGNED OSBORN, LONDON, no visible serial numbers,
by Holts Auctioneers
Est: £2,000- £3,000
£2,0001 Bid
A Late 18th/Early 19th Century Flintlock Pistol. The 9'' barrel stamped with two small oval marks an
Oct 09, 11:00 AM BST
A Late 18th/Early 19th Century Flintlock Pistol. The 9'' barrel stamped with two small oval marks an
by Wilkinson's Auctioneers
Est: £60- £120
£501 Bid
A FRENCH CAVALERY AN XIII FLINTLOCK PISTOL, DATED 1809
Oct 23, 11:00 AM EDT
A FRENCH CAVALERY AN XIII FLINTLOCK PISTOL, DATED 1809
by Helios Auctions
Est: $400- $600
$2501 Bid
Armeria Deux Pistolets: Pistolet à silex en noyer sculpté de rocailles monté en fer et à pommeau
Oct 11, 6:30 PM CEST
Armeria Deux Pistolets: Pistolet à silex en noyer sculpté de rocailles monté en fer et à pommeau
by Vanderkindere
Est: €700- €900
€7000 Bids
A French flintlock pistol, first-half 18th century
Oct 13, 9:00 AM EDT
A French flintlock pistol, first-half 18th century
by Oakridge Auction Gallery
Est: $1,500- $2,000
$7500 Bids
A OTTOMAN FLINTLOCK PISTOL, CIRCA 1800.
Oct 23, 11:00 AM EDT
A OTTOMAN FLINTLOCK PISTOL, CIRCA 1800.
by Helios Auctions
Est: $500- $700
$3000 Bids
A MEDITERRANEAN ALBANIAN RAT TAIL FLINTLOCK PISTOL, 19TH CEN.
Oct 23, 11:00 AM EDT
A MEDITERRANEAN ALBANIAN RAT TAIL FLINTLOCK PISTOL, 19TH CEN.
by Helios Auctions
Est: $800- $1,000
$6000 Bids
A BRASS SOUVENIER CLOISONNE ENAMEL ORIENTAL FLINTLOCK PISTOL
Oct 23, 11:00 AM EDT
A BRASS SOUVENIER CLOISONNE ENAMEL ORIENTAL FLINTLOCK PISTOL
by Helios Auctions
Est: $200- $300
$1000 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Antique Flintlock Pistols


Holts Auctioneers

Holts Auctioneers

Milestone Auctions

Milestone Auctions

Sofe Design Auctions

Sofe Design Auctions

Cowan's Auctions

Cowan's Auctions