Colt weapons headline upcoming estate and firearm auction

If you thought your days of playing cowboys and Indians ended when you reached the eighth grade, think again, because at the Fall Firearms and Estate Auction on Sept. 29 and 30 you will be able to find everything you need to relive the glory days of the American West and your childhood.

The auction, which will be held at Reata Pass Auctions in Humboldt, Ariz., and online at, will offer collectors more than 1,300 items of Western Americana, firearms, and other antiques and collectibles. It's the kind of inventory that hunters, gun enthusiasts and with its large selection of antique firearms, fans of the Wild West will be hard-pressed to pass up.

A blast from the past
Whether you're in the market for a state-of-the-art rifle or a Colt pistol that dates back to the 19th century, you'll be able to find it on the 29th and 30th. In fact, the works of Samuel Colt and the company he founded will be rife throughout the auction.

In the more than 150 years since his death, the legend of Samuel Colt has grown to epic proportions. His inventiveness and business acumen have become synonymous with American industrialism, and even the fact that his first two ventures failed has helped lend his legacy an aura of perseverance. That legacy, along with his company's reputation for making quality firearms, has made Colt weapons some of the most highly sought after collector's items on the market.

One of the most famous creations to come out of the Hartford, Conn.-based company's plants is the Thompson submachine gun, which gained its paradoxical reputation for beauty and lethality during the depression-era wars between outlaws and federal G-men. Featured in newsreels of the times and in nearly every gangster movie since, the Thompson is as American as apple pie.

If you'd like to lay your hands on one, the Fall Firearms auction has a 1921 model (lot #105) up for grabs that comes from the collection of David Tate, a well-known gun enthusiast. Included in the price are original documents attesting to its authenticity and decades-long use by the Amarillo, Texas, county sheriff's office, a photo from the late-1930s of deputies holding the gun, original ammunition and a 1911 single-action semi-automatic pistol.

While the Thompson is among the highlights of the auction, there are literally hundreds of other rare and specialty guns available. It's an auction not to be missed by any serious collector or gun enthusiast.

Western art and accessories
Firearms may be headlining the auction, but art, jewelry and even a Lakota Sioux fully-beaded saddle (lot #147) will be among the must-see – and must-bid on – pieces. Some of the more offbeat lots available include a late-19th century ivory chess set (i.e., pre-ban – lot #127), a bronze sculpture by renowned surrealist Salvador Dali (lot #314a) and, back on the firearms side, a high-quality English-cased pepper-box revolver from the mid-19th century (lot #263).

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