A story of treasure found


February 27, 2012, 10:27 PM
I've just GOT to tell this story. I was at a friend's house last Saturday and we got to shooting the breeze about guns as he knows it is a hobby of mine. I knew that his great uncle, who was childless, had left him an extrmely valuable collection of Civil War era firearms, matched engraved presentation sets to General so-and-so, a "Dance" pistol, etc, etc. That collection was valued 15 or 20 years ago at over $300K.

But when we were talking, he said "you know my Great-uncle left me other run-of-the-mill guns too that aren't valuable...would you like to see them? I'd like to sell them sometime, but don't want to get ripped off". He has no real interest in the guns, and his son isn't really interested either. I said I'd take a look and see if I could give him a best estimate as to their value.

Well, he goes over to a locked cabinet and proceeds to pull out about 10 original boxes and hands them to me. I open the first box and I am looking at a new, apparently unfired first generation Colt SAA in 45. Not a single mark or blemish. I can only estimate the age of he gun by the Colt box, which on the inside had some advertisements, including talking about buying Colt machine guns. So, I am estimating it was from the 1920's?

The second box had an identical revolver in the same pristine condition in 44 Russian caliber. Same type of box with the same advertisements in it.

The next 4 or 5 boxes were miscellaneous Smith & Wessons...again apparently new and unfired...most of which had the original bills of sales from when the man bought them in the 1950s. Not a single drag line, not a mark. I'm sorry, but I don't remember the model numbers - I was sort of flabbergasted.

Next was a Colt Woodsman - brand new in the box - obviously fairly old based on the style of the box, etc.

Then there was a 1908 Colt 32 caliber automatic - almost perfect condition. There was one fairly well used S&W western type 44 Magnum (blackhawk?).

So, I offered him $500 and took the whole bunch.

JUST KIDDING! No, I told him that what he had was a helluva lot more valuable than he thought. And gave him some estimates, but said that he really needed to do some research.

Anyway - that's my story. It was one of those rare circimstances where you come across something amazing when you don't expect it.

If you enjoyed reading about "A story of treasure found" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Dan Bear
February 27, 2012, 10:32 PM
I'm glad you didn't rip your friend off. :)

February 27, 2012, 11:59 PM
I think I would STILL be choking! I cannot even imagine a collection just being in my house. Hope you held them at arms length...so you didn't drool on them!:D


February 28, 2012, 12:27 AM
Thats a cool story. That collection needs its own insurance policy. Maby he'll do some research and see just what exactly has been locked up in that cabinet and appriciate them all.

February 28, 2012, 12:56 AM
Two thoughts:

1. He needs to get them appraised and insured.
2. He needs to immediately get a quality safe.

What a cool story. I hope to one day leave my heirs a nice collection that they will appreciate. Mine will all be functional practical guns though - most of them fired and used. But very practical.

February 28, 2012, 01:21 AM
Almost sounds like a dream. Thanks for sharing.

Jim K
February 28, 2012, 09:19 PM
Often when people ask about insurance for guns, I tell them that most home-owners policies cover a small gun collection under personal property.

But NOT with something like THAT!!! We are talking tens of thousands of dollars!

If that is the kind of stuff he had, I suspect the estate was ripped off at $300k for the rest of the stuff, even 20 years ago.


February 28, 2012, 09:48 PM
That's sort of like finding a pristine '63 splitwindow sitting in a garage waiting on the "boy" to come back from Vietnam and fire it up! Make sure you don't tell ANYBODY where this guy lives, loose lips sink ships!

February 28, 2012, 09:49 PM
Good grief, what a find. Did you tell him those guns will fund Juniors college? Wow.

Ron James
February 28, 2012, 10:27 PM
I believe I am as straight an arrow as anyone, however I would have tempted to go home , get a shovel, a shotgun and revisit my old friend when no one else was around.:evil:

If you enjoyed reading about "A story of treasure found" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!