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Old 05-01-2017, 11:53 AM
Virgilmule Virgilmule is offline
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Default Rookie needs help!

I recently obtained a pistol from my parents' estate that I am struggling to identify. Can anyone help? Thanks!
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Old 05-01-2017, 12:16 PM
opoefc opoefc is offline
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Welcome to the Forum. Your S&W, serial number 115506, ( assuming that's what is says on the barrel rib ) is a .32DA, 4th model. Probably shipped from the factory around 1887-88 era. The engraving could be factory done, however most likely it was added by the distributor. Nice family heirloom! Can you parents tell you anything about it's history? You should order a factory historical letter for the gun, as it will tell you when, where and to whom the gun was shipped, as well as It;s configuration when shipped. There's a link on this Forum to the application form for a letter. Ed.

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Old 05-01-2017, 12:35 PM
Virgilmule Virgilmule is offline
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Ed - Thanks for the help! The serial number is stamped on the inside of the cylinder, but is nowhere to be found on the barrel. My parents are deceased, so I'm on my own digging up information. It's also interesting that inscribed into the (ivory?) handle is "Fred to Kittie". I will take your advice and send in the letter for additional historical information. Thanks again!
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Old 05-01-2017, 11:04 PM
opoefc opoefc is offline
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The serial number on the barrel is on the back end where the barrel latch is located. The numbers are very small and are stamped between the " ears". The bottom of the latch should also have the serial number stamped there. The top of the barrel should say "Smith & Wesson, Springfield, Mass." and may have various patent dates. "Fred to Kittie" adds a lot of character to the gun! The stocks are pearl. Now you have the project of finding out who Fred & Kittie may be! I once had a similar S&W with the a lady's name on it - turned out she was a famous madam in a west Texas House of Ill Repute! Ed.
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Old 05-02-2017, 09:03 AM
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glowe glowe is offline
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Welcome to the Forum. You have the information from the expert of experts and you can take it to the bank. Take Ed's advise and obtain that letter.

I do not know enough about engraving to tell you anything other than the fact that distributors did have many plain guns engraved. Distributors also provided non-factory mother-of-pearl stocks. When your 32 DA was made, pearl stocks did not yet have gold S&W medallions, so the stocks can either be factory or added by the distributor. A letter will help with both questions. The medallions appeared during the 1893 Chicago Exposition. Your revolver would have shipped from the factory around 1888.

I am quite sure you do not intend to sell the gun, but it is always a good idea to have the letter just in case. The difference between an all original factory gun and a post-factory engraved gun with non-factory stocks could add 2X to 3X to the value.
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