DENVER, Pa. – Morphy Auctions will conduct an important Firearms, Militaria and Sporting sale March 1-2. Many of the weapons in the auction have historic significance such as a French saber attributed to General Lafayette. Absentee and Internet live bidding is available through LiveAuctioneers.
The French saber attributed to Lafayette presented it to Revolutionary War Gen. John Brooks, whom he first met while under the command of Gen. George Washington at Valley Forge in 1778. According to family tradition, Brooks’ son, John Brooks Jr. was sworn into the Marines in 1807. Brooks Jr. carried his father’s sword during the War of 1812. At the Battle of Lake Erie, he was serving on deck with Admiral Oliver Hazard Perry when he was mortally wounded on Sept. 10, 1813. The museum-quality sword, which is complete with a letter detailing its provenance and history, is estimated at $20,000-$40,000.
A fine jade-hilted silver-mounted Shamshir, a Persian sword, in the auction carries an estimate of $15,000-$25,000. It features a curved Damascus steel blade and a silver guard with languettes. The guard is embellished with chiseled florals and scrolls with jade and turquoise ornamentation on both sides. Its well-executed 18th-century jade hilt is covered with relief carved flowers and foliage.
The two-day auction boasts many antique hand-held firearms. Foremost among them is a Colt Whitneyville Hartford Transitional Walker Model Dragoon Revolver that is estimated at $20,000-$40,000. This gun, one of only 240 manufactured, is considered to be the holy grail of Colt percussion revolvers. All were made in late 1847 at the Hartford factory. It has been field stripped, examined and vetted by numerous experts and deemed to be one of the better existing examples of this rare revolver.
A scarce piece in the in the sale is a New Haven Arms Volcanic lever-action pistol having matching serial numbers stamped inside the frame and grips. These guns were manufactured and stamped on top of the frame “NEW HAVEN CONN. / PATENT FEB 14 1854.” This clean example is estimated at $8,500-$10,500.
Also available are broad selections of outstanding rifles, shotguns, muskets and carbines, especially Winchesters. A high-condition cased Winchester Henry lever- action rifle from 1862 is expected to sell for up to $80,000. This example is 100 percent untouched and original. It is described as being one of the finest standard early commercial Henry rifles in existence. It is housed in a rare walnut factory display case.
This sale includes fine examples of Kentucky rifles and firearms, Bowie and other hand knives, modern editions, headwear and uniforms, books and ephemera.
Dan Morphy, president of Morphy Auctions, said, “This auction represents the first firearms sale we’ll present after our purchase of James D. Julia late last year. We are thrilled to welcome Julia’s customers to Morphy’s, and promise to match – or even top – the outstanding merchandise, service and relationships they enjoyed at Julia’s through our expanded firearms division. This two-day sale presents a nonstop offering of some of the finest firearms to come up for sale in recent memory. The selections of Winchesters are second to none.”