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    Spiller & Burr Revolver .36 caliber, six shot cylinder, serial number 500 with holster. In the summer and fall of 1862, Edward N. Spiller and David J. Burr set up a factory near Atlanta to produce pistols for the Confederacy. Pistols were made as brass-framed copies of the Whitney Navy revolver with some 700 produced in Atlanta and another approximately 700 produced in Macon, Georgia. This Atlanta made example bears a 6 inch barrel and is marked "SPILLER & BURR" on the top with the serial number on the bottom by the loading lever pivot. Additionally, serial numbers are visible on the top of the loading lever, on the cylinder and on the bottom of the grip strap near the toe. "C.S." is stamped on the left side of the front end of the frame. The pistol is mechanically fine with most of the steel surfaces exhibiting a brown patina and the brass a fine aged golden yellow with a tinge of pink. The grips have shrunk slightly from age but are in very good condition. The accompanying holster is a standard button flap type showing very little cracking for the age.

    Kent Wall's Report:
    In 1861, Edmond Spiller, David Burr and James Burton formed a partnership and received a contract to produce 15,000 revolvers for the Confederate Government. Revolvers to be 6 shot, .36 caliber and to follow the Whitney revolver pattern. The partners, purchased the machinery and plans of the Robinson Revolver Factory in Richmond, Virginia, and began development.
    In mid 1862, the partners relocated to Atlanta, Georgia and by December, had produced less than 20 revolvers. Due to repeated failures, the government made a number of suggestions to improve the basic design. It was not until spring, 1863, that another 40 revolvers were delivered for inspection, most of which were rejected. After this fiasco, the firm finally adopted some of the suggestions. Thus was born the Second Model. Sporadic production continued until the government took over the operation in January, 1864, and moved the equipment and machinery to Macon, Georgia.
    Bill Gary, Confederate Revolvers, states that up until the government take-over, the partnership produced 840 revolvers. The Macon operation produced approximately 400 revolvers before closing in December, 1864, upon the approach of General Sherman's forces.
    The Second Model revolver, serial number 500, has a 6" iron, octagon barrel, stamped on the top barrel flat "Spiller & Burr". The frame, trigger guard, and back strap are brass as is the pedestal front sight. SN "500" appears on bottom barrel flat, loading lever flat, circumference of cylinder and butt strap.
    "C. S." is stamped on left side of frame. "E" appears on left side of back strap under the grip.
    The 2-piece grips are walnut and retain the brass washers. There is only minor shrinkage and some few dings and scratches. On the outside of the left grip, near the top, there is a "T" lightly scratched.
    Holster has a flap and is brown leather, probably pigskin. The flap is secured with a brass button/finial.
    Condition Overall: Very Good. Iron parts have an even patina with good sharp edges, and few dings and scratches. Brass parts have an even, mellow patina with a hint of a rosy tint indicating a high copper content.
    Holster Overall: Good. Minor cracking
    Provenance: This serial number is not listed in either Albaugh/Benet/Simmons, Confederate Handguns (1963) or in Albaugh/Simmon's Brass Framed Colt and Whitney, (1955).

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2006
    1st-2nd Friday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 9,762

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