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Percussion Revolvers

After weather-resistant percussion technology replaced the less-reliable flintlock mechanism in the early decades of the 1800s, gun makers transitioned to percussion revolvers during the middle years of the 19th century. Percussion-fired models were the firearms standard until metallic cartridge revolvers came into common use in the mid 1870s.

In their earliest period of development from 1836 to 1848, Patterson and Walker revolvers based on Colt patents made up the lion’s share of percussion revolvers. From 1849 to 1855, when the simple single-action mechanism came into its own, percussion revolvers were adopted for widespread global use. They enjoyed the height of their popularity from the late-1850s through the 1860s, when innovations like the double-action method began replacing them.

Percussion-based rotating cylinder weapons were introduced to service during the Civil War and maintained their popularity before being abandoned in favor of newer improvements. Despite being relatively short-lived iterations, original percussion revolvers and the modern-day replicas based on them remain popular among collectors, avid shooters, and firearms enthusiasts.


Quick Facts

  • In a 2011 Auction Arms sale, a replica Richland Arms Remington 1859 New Model Army percussion revolver in its original box sold for $177.01
  • A California Gold Rush-era Colt .44 caliber six-shot percussion revolver sold at Skinner for $2,489
  • In 2007, the finest-known example of a .31-caliber Colt percussion revolver sold at Rock Island Auction for an incredible $414,000

Recommended Items at Auction

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Navy Arms LeNavy Arms LeMat Navy Model Perc Revolver
Jun 22, 9:30 AM EDT
Navy Arms LeNavy Arms LeMat Navy Model Perc Revolver
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$65011 Bids
Hawes .44 Cal. Navy Model Percussion Revolver
Jun 22, 9:30 AM EDT
Hawes .44 Cal. Navy Model Percussion Revolver
by Old Barn Auction
Est: $40- $1,000
$907 Bids
A percussion revolver
Jun 21, 10:00 AM CEST
A percussion revolver
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €200- €300
€2001 Bid
A rare percussion revolver by P.J. Fagard
Jun 21, 10:00 AM CEST
A rare percussion revolver by P.J. Fagard
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €250- €400
€2501 Bid
A .28 PERCUSSION SIDEHAMMER POCKET SINGLE-ACTION REVOLVER BY ALLEN & WHEELOCK, serial no. 414,
Jul 29, 10:00 AM BST
A .28 PERCUSSION SIDEHAMMER POCKET SINGLE-ACTION REVOLVER BY ALLEN & WHEELOCK, serial no. 414,
by Holts Auctioneers
Est: £300- £500
£3001 Bid
A Whitney Pocket Model Percussion Revolver
Jun 19, 2:00 PM CEST
A Whitney Pocket Model Percussion Revolver
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €200- €300
€2001 Bid
Massachusetts Arms Co. Maynard Primed Percussion Pocket Revolver
Jun 23, 9:00 AM CDT
Massachusetts Arms Co. Maynard Primed Percussion Pocket Revolver
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $1,400- $2,000
$1,2000 Bids
Cased Engraved William Egan Retailed Bentley 54-Bore Revolver
Jun 23, 9:00 AM CDT
Cased Engraved William Egan Retailed Bentley 54-Bore Revolver
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $1,500- $2,500
$1,3000 Bids
Three Antique American Percussion Revolvers
Jun 22, 9:00 AM CDT
Three Antique American Percussion Revolvers
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $1,000- $1,500
$9000 Bids
Consecutively Serialized Pair of Rogers & Spencer Army Revolvers
Jun 22, 9:00 AM CDT
Consecutively Serialized Pair of Rogers & Spencer Army Revolvers
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $4,000- $6,000
$3,5000 Bids
A Kerr percussion revolver of Belgian production
Jun 19, 2:00 PM CEST
A Kerr percussion revolver of Belgian production
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €350- €500
€3500 Bids
A fine cased Deane & Son percussion revolver
Jun 21, 10:00 AM CEST
A fine cased Deane & Son percussion revolver
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €800- €1,200
€8000 Bids
A rare cased Adams percussion revolver
Jun 21, 10:00 AM CEST
A rare cased Adams percussion revolver
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €800- €1,200
€8000 Bids
An elegant and interesting transition-type percussion revolver by N.W. Hanson
Jun 21, 10:00 AM CEST
An elegant and interesting transition-type percussion revolver by N.W. Hanson
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €600- €1,000
€6000 Bids
A cased Adams percussion revolver by Charles Ingram
Jun 21, 10:00 AM CEST
A cased Adams percussion revolver by Charles Ingram
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €500- €1,000
€5000 Bids
Two Percussion Revolvers
Jun 23, 9:00 AM CDT
Two Percussion Revolvers
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $1,600- $2,750
$1,4000 Bids
Rogers & Spencer Army Model Percussion Revolver
Jun 21, 9:00 AM CDT
Rogers & Spencer Army Model Percussion Revolver
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $800- $1,300
$7000 Bids
Whitney Arms Navy Model Percussion Revolver
Jul 10, 9:00 AM CDT
Whitney Arms Navy Model Percussion Revolver
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $500- $800
$4500 Bids
Whitney Second Model Navy Percussion Revolver
Jul 10, 9:00 AM CDT
Whitney Second Model Navy Percussion Revolver
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $700- $1,100
$6000 Bids
Cased William & Powell Double Action Percussion Revolver
Jul 10, 9:00 AM CDT
Cased William & Powell Double Action Percussion Revolver
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $900- $1,400
$8000 Bids
A Kerr percussion revolver by the London Armoury Company
Jun 19, 2:00 PM CEST
A Kerr percussion revolver by the London Armoury Company
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €350- €500
€3500 Bids
Three Pepperbox Percussion Revolvers
Jul 10, 9:00 AM CDT
Three Pepperbox Percussion Revolvers
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $900- $1,400
$8000 Bids
A transition-type percussion revolver
Jun 21, 10:00 AM CEST
A transition-type percussion revolver
by Czerny's International Auction House
Est: €250- €350
€2500 Bids
Inscribed Nepperhan Fire Arms Co. Percussion Revolver
Jun 21, 9:00 AM CDT
Inscribed Nepperhan Fire Arms Co. Percussion Revolver
by Rock Island Auction Company
Est: $800- $1,400
$7000 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Percussion Revolvers


Rock Island Auction Company

Rock Island Auction Company

Holts Auctioneers

Holts Auctioneers

Czerny's International Auction House

Czerny's International Auction House

Hermann Historica GmbH

Hermann Historica GmbH