COLT Serial Number MMA - 1

Magnificent, documented cased ALVIN White signed Master factory exhibition engraved and Elaborately gold inlaid colt single action army revolver Masterpiece for the 1985 Metropolitan museum of art benefit auction and colt collectors association 2009 best single Weapon Winner. With rampant colt trophy and factory letter

This outstanding late 20th century work of steel canvas art was specifically built by Colt for the famed Metropolitan Museum of Art benefit auction in 1985. Designed, engraved and inlaid in 18 karat gold by legendary master engraver Alvin White, this Colt SAA masterpiece is considered by some experts to be the most inspired work in White's distinguished career who has been referred to as the "Dean of American Engraving." The theme of the extensive flush and relief gold inlays and engraving on the revolver is tied to specific objects found in the collection of the Met’s Arms and Armor Department. These fine inlays include a Swiss dagger, mace, and Peter Pech over/under Wheelock pistol on the barrel, a Japanese sword guard, Merovingian shield boss, stirrup and portrait bust of the department founder Dr. Bashford Dean on the frame, a medieval spur on the trigger guard, and sword on the back strap. The balance features flush inlaid gold scrolls and scroll engraving. A relief gold American eagle is featured on the steel butt cap which is also decorated with gold inlaid scrollwork. The extra cylinder features a relief Renaissance helmet and facade of the United Sates Branch Bank that is part of the Met’s American wing as well as the Met’s logo in flush gold. Cross-hatched gold motifs are inlaid between the cylinder flutes and the front sight. Flush gold bands are inlaid on the breech of the cylinders, breech of the barrel, base of the ejector rod and barrel muzzle. Both hammer sides are decorated with flush gold dolphin motif.
The barrel has the one-line Hartford address and model/caliber markings in flush inlaid gold. The three-line Colt patent legend is flush gold inlaid on the left side of the frame. The special serial number, "MMA-1," is flush gold inlaid on the bottom of the frame. The oil stained walnut grip is inlaid on the left side with the profile of a Venetian Lions Head Helmet inscribed in script: "From/Colt Industries/(logo)/to benefit/(museum logo)/Dept of Arms Armor/Christie's/Octr 8th 1985". The right side of the grip is inlaid with the gold profile of a Renaissance breast plate. The right inlay is left blank for future inscription. The revolver is signed "A.A. White" on the trigger guard bevel behind the serial number. The revolver is complete with a French-fitted case. The case is covered in blue leather and tooled in gold leaf by Arno Werner of Blue Oasis. The lid of the case is tooled with the inscription "MMA- 1/DONATED BY COLT INDUSTRIES/COLT FIREARMS DIVISION/FOR THE BENEFIT AUCTION/THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART/ARMS AND ARMOR DEPARTMENT/CHRISTIE'S NEW YORK/OCTOBER 8th 1985" tooled in gold leaf. The case is lined in gold velvet. The accompanying factory letter confirms the aforementioned configuration and embellished details of the revolver as well as confirming the revolver was specifically built by Colt for the Met’s Arms and Armor Department benefit auction in 1985. The catalog for the benefit auction is included, and the revolver is on the cover and on page 74-75, lot 146.
The revolver was one of the most spectacular pieces to be sold and as it was featured on the cover of the auction catalog meant that it was a featured piece. The auction raised over $500,000 with all proceeds going to the museum. This revolver a lone sold for 7.5% of the total raised for the Met. Also included is the Met’s souvenir catalog that showcases some of the fantastic pieces of the museum’s Arms and Armor Department. Founded in 1870, the Met exhibits over 5,000 years of art from all corners of the globe and boosts a permanent collection of over two million works, making it the largest art museum in the Americas. At the 2009 Colt Collectors Association Show held in Concord, North Carolina, this Alvin White SAA Met masterpiece won the 1946-present category of best single weapon. For this achievement, the revolver received a 13 inch tall Colt Collectors Association Rampant Colt bronze statue by Thomas Palmerton, which is included. The revolver was pictured in R.L. Wilson's "Colt Engraving Book Vol. II" on the frontispiece and on pages 652 and 651, "Steel Canvas" on page 311, and "The Book of Colt Firearms" on page IX. Provenance: Steven V. Maksin Family Collection.