Butch Cassidy's Colt .45 sells for $175,000 in Wild West auction

paulfrasercollectibles

2015-06-26 13:00:13

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Butch Cassidy's Colt .45 sells for $175,000 in Wild West auction

The Colt .45 that Butch Cassidy bought on his release from jail headlined

A two-day Wild West auction in California, held September 29-30, saw Butch Cassidy's Colt .45 sell, accompanied by a brilliant selection of related documents.

Butch Cassidy Colt SAARe-arming himself was one of Cassidy's first acts upon his release from jail

Upon his release from prison in 1896, one of Cassidy's first actions was to arm himself with the Colt .45 Single Action Army, which he purchased from a local hardware store in Vernal, Utah. The outlaw had just served 18 months of a two yearsentence for horse theft - his only period spent behind bars.

Cassidy is known to havecarried the gun from 1896 to 1899, which is the period that made his reputationas theleader in countless heists. It is said that he often patted the Colt's grip and said: "The combination to my retirement lies in a Denver bank."

The collection of supporting documentscame from the gun's former owner E Dixon Larson, who travelled across the United States between 1967 and 1970 in search of information relating toits provenance. Included are letters from Laura Parker Betenson, Cassidy's younger sister, and William Darby, one of Cassidy's men, who both attested to its authenticity. Cassidy's sister can be seen holding the gun on page two of her book, Butch Cassidy, My Brother.

The Colt went to auction with a $150,000-250,000 estimate and sold comfortably within this, at $175,000. The sale occurred on the same day as another outlaw-themed auction, which saw the guns that Bonnie and Clyde were holding when they were ambushed by a posse sell for a combined $504,000.

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