In the history of American guns, there are a few models that stand out for their fame and continued use as a collectible item. One such gun is the Colt Peacemaker, a firearm that was made in 1873 by the Colt’s Manufacturing Company for use by the American army. The Colt Peacemakers were considered to be the official government revolver of choice for a number of years. After the armed forces switched to another model as their choice, the Colt revolvers enjoyed a second life in the western states where they could be purchased at a discount from old west guns dealers.
The Colt Peacemaker was known under several different names. The official moniker for the firearm was the Colt Single Action Army, but other names were used interchangeably. The most popular of these names, and the one that survives to this day is Colt 45, while other names, such as the Model P, eventually fell out of common use. All told, the production of the gun lasted for 20 years, but military production as an artillery gun continued until the year of 1902. During this time and afterwards, a number of variations existed depending on caliber and other considerations.
For modern day collectors, Colt Peacemakers are a complete division of products. The ones that are highly sought by collectors are those which feature an engraving. Although the total number of Colt revolvers that received an engraving is not fully known, it is estimated that only one percent were engraved. It is known that the company brought skilled engravers over from Europe to create these special engraved versions of the Colt Peacemaker for important people and featured precious stones as part of the engraving. In auctions, these models often command the highest competition of bidding and the highest prices.