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Old 04-12-2018, 10:05 PM
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Default How much documentation is needed?

I'm looking at an auction that claims to have Pancho Villas New 3rd model.

I assume that their is hundreds of guns that are claimed to have belonged to famous gunslingers.

This one has his birth name engraved on the backstrap witch kinda raises a red flag to me.

It also has a 1936 letter from a saddle maker in FT Worth that claims that Pancho Villa left it there to be repaired and he never returned to pick it up.

And a couple of letters that document where it has been since then.

The Factory letter says it was shipped to MW Robinson in New York for export.

What are the chances this is really Pancho Villas gun? It seems like you would basically be taking the word of a saddle maker from 1936. I'm not sure how reliable that would be.

Any opinions would be appreciated.

I'm not in a position to bid on this gun. If anyone is interested I can pass on the auction information.

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Old 04-12-2018, 10:11 PM
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If I were in the market for such a gun, I would bid/offer up to what I thought it was worth if the gun were not embellished. (Minus 10% if the engraving was cheesy ). This is usually phrased "buy the gun, not the story".
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Old 04-12-2018, 10:25 PM
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We just had a long thread on “Pancho’s Pistol” not too long ago.

Peruse this to see what people generally think of such claims:

Pancho's Pistol

One letter by some unknown dude written 13 years after Pancho’s death is a bit underwhelming. I would think a gun like that would have to have ironclad provenance accepted as genuine by one of the major auction houses before I would entertain the notion that there MIGHT be something to it. I’d still not be interested, though, and I couldn’t afford it
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Old 04-13-2018, 03:46 AM
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As stated above, buy the gun, not the story.

The only way I might even consider such a gun is if there was solid proof that a firearm with a certain serial number was linked to a reknowned individual. Such as if a factory letter from Roy Jinks stated that it was shipped to Pancho Villa. Other documentation that might be acceptable would be official documentation originating from an authority such as a confiscating official or maybe a documentation of the estate of an individual documented by an authority or public official. Such as a will or documentation of the property in a public record made at a time contemporary to the individual, and not altered or forged.

A letter from a saddle maker from 1936--I could create a few hundred of these in an afternoon.

I once was offered for sale at a tag sale in the late 1990's Robert E Lee's coffee grinder. Had a patent date of around 1900 on it and Lee died in 1870. But the fellow selling it insisted that his grandfather or great grandfather bought it off of the estate of Robert E Lee. Now, if he said so, it certainly must be so!

Last edited by mrcvs; 04-13-2018 at 03:59 AM. Reason: To add an anecdote
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Old 04-13-2018, 08:31 AM
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Sounds legit to me! If it's on the internet it's true right?
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Old 04-13-2018, 09:53 AM
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There are many such claims made for guns of Dilinger, Annie Oakley, Custer etc. Just because someone says it is true doesn't make it so. Most S&W's back in the day shipped to distributors and unless their records are also included showing shipment or purchase by that famous individual it is difficult to prove.

Letters of provenance and other origination documents can also be faked. I could take some old paper and forge a letter from Pancho himself but even that wouldn't prove anything.

While the prospect of owning such a gun is attractive, the possibility of it being real not so much.
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Old 04-13-2018, 10:06 AM
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Pancho had thousands of guns. They show up all the time.
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Old 04-13-2018, 10:19 AM
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PM me if you want Pancho's genuine M1 Garand. That is the only reason he left the S&W with the saddle maker....so he could hop over to John Canesius house for that proto M1.

Wait.....I'll play the song again....maybe it was Lefty I'm thinking about.

Anyway.....the provenance on the M1 is ironclad, cannot be refuted... trust me

PS: I also have Ike's wartime personal sidearm....it is a absolutely pristine Glock....if you bought R.E. Lee's coffee grinder, you are going to love this one.
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Old 04-13-2018, 11:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrcvs View Post
I once was offered for sale at a tag sale in the late 1990's Robert E Lee's coffee grinder. Had a patent date of around 1900 on it and Lee died in 1870. But the fellow selling it insisted that his grandfather or great grandfather bought it off of the estate of Robert E Lee. Now, if he said so, it certainly must be so!
By coincidence I have a samurai sword that General Lee carried at the Boston Tea Party.

I may have bought it at the same place.

Last edited by OFT II; 04-13-2018 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 04-13-2018, 11:41 AM
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Didn’t know that Pancho ever went to Ft. Worth?
He spent a lot of time in El Paso, that’s super well documented.
He also went to Cloudcroft, NM, but thats just up the road from El Paso.
The more outrageous the claim,
The more proof that is required!
I think the Railroad up to Cloudcroft was in place when Pancho visited.
If it was, he would have gone over the Mexican Canyon Trestle.
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Old 04-13-2018, 10:49 PM
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Thats kinda how I felt when I saw the auction. I just didn't know their was that many guns that were claimed to belong to Pancho. He must have been quite the collector.

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