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US Model 1836 Flintlock Pistol, Asa Waters, c. 1837

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US Model 1836 Flintlock Pistol, Asa Waters, c. 1837

Please check out my website at newmarketarms.com FIRST for this and other antique military firearms.

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This a very good condition and very scarce Asa Waters manufactured U.S. Model 1836 Flintlock Pistol, still in the original flint, that was made in 1837.

The history of the U.S. martial handgun began just before the Revolution when British troops stationed in the American Colonies were issued with the "New Model 1760" flintlock pistol. When the Revolutionary War began, the Rappahannock Forge in Virginia copied the British Model 1760 design and designated it the Model 1775. This .62 caliber, flintlock, single shot pistol is generally considered to be the first US martial sidearm. The US War Department signed its first contract with a private arms manufacturer in 1799 when it entered into an agreement with Simeon North of Berlin, Connecticut to produce what became the Model 1799 Flintlock Pistol in .75 caliber.

The U.S. Arsenal at Harper's Ferry eventually began producing a copy of the US Model 1775 Flintlock Pistol with minor modifications and designated it the Model 1805. Springfield Armory followed suit several years later with its Model 1817 Flintlock Pistol in .54 caliber (one of the few handguns ever produced by Springfield during its nearly 200 years of operations). The Model 1817 was a long, full-stocked handgun and was popular with Dragoons because of their ability to carry the long weapon in a brace of two pistols. Various designs and manufacturers produced US Martial Flintlock Pistols during the first third of the 19th Century but most kept to a fairly standardized design - flintlock ignition, large caliber, smooth bore barrel, steel or brass furniture and a ramrod. The Waters Model 1836 has the distinction of being the last flintlock pistol adopted for use by the U.S. Army.

Asa Waters, Jr., and his son Asa H. Waters, manufactured firearms, principally under contract for the U.S. Government, in Millbury, Massachusetts. Asa Waters, Jr., also known as Asa Waters the Second, was born in Sutton, Massachusetts on November 2, 1769 to a family with a long history of gun making. Waters and his brother, Elijah, began manufacturing firearms as well as scythes, saws and other metal implements. The Waters Armory was constructed by the brothers in 1808, the same year they obtained their first government contract for the production of the pattern musket. Elijah Waters died in 1814 and Asa Waters became the sole proprietor of his firearms manufacturing concern. He was joined by his son, Asa Holman Waters, who continued the family's firearms manufacturing business after Asa Waters, Jr. died Christmas Eve, 1841, the year this flintlock pistol was manufactured. Asa Waters, Jr.'s last words were, "I am going from this room to one above." This pistol thus has the distinction of being the last US Model Flintlock Pistol manufactured for the U.S. Army, and one of the last Waters pistols manufactured under the founder, Asa Waters, Jr.'s, leadership. Interestingly, part of the machinery for manufacturing the U.S. Model 1836 and other pistols from the Waters Armory was sold in 1852 to William Glaze, who managed the Palmetto Armory in Charleston, South Carolina. This accounts for the similarity between the Waters pistols and the Palmetto Armory-manufactured percussion pistols, many of which were used by the Confederacy early in the Civil War.

This particular Model 1836 Flintlock Pistol, as noted, is in its original flintlock configuration and is in very good antique condition. The original Stock is beautiful American Black Walnut and is in very good condition with minor dings and no cracks noted.. The left side of the stock has an indistinct cartouche but it is no longer readable.

The furniture on this pistol is its original steel with the majority of its National Armory Bright finish remaining. The Trigger Guard has serif “W” and “X” inspection stamps on the forward portion. The separate Trigger Bow is still tightly secured to the Trigger Guard. The Trigger still shows evidence of the original blued finish in the protected area. The Side Plate is unmarred and has a serif “W” inspection stamp centered on the outer surface. Both Side Plate Screws are in good condition with unmarred slots and the barrels of both retains considerable original finish. The Barrel Band and integrated extension, which overlaps with the forward portion of the Side Plate, exhibits considerable original National Armory Bright finish with minor pinprick pitting and it has a serif “W” stamp on the inside of the arm. The Back Strap and integrated butt cap also exhibits its original National Armory Bright finish with minor pinprick pitting. The cap screw has a slightly marred single slot in the National Armory Bright finished convex head. The front grip strap screw has an unmarred single slot over the original National Armory Bright finish that is now a plum patina.

The Lock Plate is in fine condition and the Lock Plate markings are still crisp, which are an eagle head pointing towards the muzzle over "A. WATERS/MILBURY, MS./1837" just forward of the Hammer. The original Hammer is present and it retains its original National Armory Bright finish. The left side of the hammer’s spine has a serif “W” inspection stamp. The Hammer Screw has an unmarred single slot and has a serif “W” lock builder’s stamp. The Binding Screw and Upper Jaw both move smoothly and it currently secures a pistol flint surrounded by leather. The Hammer operates correctly at half-cock and full-cock and it releases smoothly at full-cock. The Original Brass Flash Pan is present and retains its original dark mustard patina. The Touch Hole adjacent to the Flash Pan is in its original configuration and diameter and has not been altered. The Frizzen exhibits wear on its face consistent with firing and it operates smoothly and has a serif “K” assembly stamp on the face and on the left side. The Frizzen Spring is still strong. The Frizzen Screw has the matching “W” lock builder’s stamp.

The inside of the lock exhibits considerable original National Armory Bright finish and is in fine condition. The inside of the lock plate, just under the frizzen screw, has a serif “W” inspection stamp. The inside face of the brass flash pan has serif “W” and “K” inspection stamps. The Sear, Tumbler and Bridle all have serif “W” inspection stamps. The Sear and Tumbler both exhibit considerable original color case hardened finish.

The original Barrel is present and still shows generous portions of its National Armory Bright Finish interspersed with browning and some old pitting near the touchhole and on the top, rear of the barrel adjacent to the touchhole. The original Breech Plug is present. The top of the plug, on the tang, retains its National Armory Bright finish and it still retains the integrated rear sight dish. The back edge of the plug has a serif “K” stamp. The back of the barrel, adjacent to the plug, has a serif “V” stamp. The bottom of the tang has a witness line that aligns with a corresponding witness line on the bottom, rear of the barrel.

The original Brass Front Sight Stud is still brazed securely in place and it has a dark mustard patina. On the top, left of the barrel is the "U.S." surcharge over the initials, "J M," which are the initials of civilian Ordnance Inspector Justin Murphy, over the firing proof "P" stamp. On the bottom, rear of the barrel are serif “K”, “W” and “I” stamps along with the serif “JM” inspection of stamp of Justin Murphy.

Below the front of the Barrel is the original Ramrod Swivel Assembly, which still operates smoothly. The original Ramrod is also present with its Buttonhead Tip and threaded end. The Ramrod Assembly still exhibits its original National Armory Bright finish that now exhibits a plum and pewter patina with a slight bend in it although it still stows correctly.

Waters only manufactured approximately 20,000 of this variant of the U.S. Model 1836 Flintlock Pistol and surviving examples still in their original flint are exceedingly rare today. This pistol functions perfectly and is in beautiful condition.

This pistol is an antique so it can be shipped to anyone. This pistol will also come with an historic writeup and a CD containing all of the photos in the listing. I accept Visa and MasterCard and charge NO FEES. Please let me know if you have any questions or if you would like additional photos posted.

 

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