Civil War artefacts lead Morphy's $1.4 million firearms auction
Historic Civil War memorabilia led the way at the latest Morphy Auctions sale of antique and vintage firearms.
The auction in Denver, Pennsylvania on July 24-25 featured a wealth of rifles, pistols and edged weapons, which together brought a total of $1.44 million.
The centrepiece of the auction was the Roberts Collection of Civil War guns, apparel and battlefield implements, passed down through the family of two Pennsylvania brothers. George and Charles Roberts both joined the Union Army in 1862, George with the 42nd Illinois Volunteers and Charles the 124th Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers. George was commissioned to the rank of major and later promoted to brigadier general, and Charles eventually rose to the rank of captain.
Amongst the highlights of the collection were an officer's sword presented to Charles on Feb. 22, 1863 by members of company A, 124th Regiment, Pennsylvania Volunteers, which sold for $11,400; George's double-breasted frock coat with the words “Col. [George] Roberts February 11th, 1862” inside its collar, which sold for $10,800; and his officer’s pork pie slouch, owned while acting as brigadier general of the 42nd Illinois Regiment, which sold for $8,400.
“[The family] were very pleased, both with the results and the way our team had handled and marketed their important historical heirlooms,” said Morphy’s founder and president, Dan Morphy.
“To firearms and militaria collectors, the Civil War era is still one of the most fascinating periods in history. I doubt that will ever change.”
The sale's most valuable lot was a heavily engraved Belgian Browning Superposed 10-gauge over/under shotgun, signed by Angelo Bee and described as “a thing of beauty to behold,”, which sold for $27,600.
Further top lots included a 1967 Browning Superposed 28-gauge shotgun which realized $13,200; a 1927 Winchester Pope custom high-wall single-shot rifle which fetched $14,200; and a Tiffany high-grade Civil War presentation sword given to Captain George Van Beak (d. 1877) by Company A, 33rd Missouri Volunteers, which achieved $12,000.
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