Denver, PA, – Collectors clearly set their sites on Morphy Auctions’ fine firearms sale held on Saturday, April 9th and Sunday, April 10th, 2016. This event featured rarities from sought-after manufacturers; a full range of guns, knives, and swords; historical items; and other highly collectible militaria, including uniforms and accessories. When the smoke cleared, this sale had 19 lots realizing $5,000-9,999; 11 at $10,000-19,999; and one topping $20,000! All prices reported include Morphy’s 22% buyer’s premium.
This auction’s outstanding selections of rifles aimed to please. Enthusiasts targeted both domestic and international models as favorites. Made in the USA highlights included examples from Winchester, Remington, Colt, and Weatherby.
Homegrown rifle highlights include lot #315, a Winchester model 1873 LA. This firearm, retaining 93-95% of the most lustrous, rich, velvety blue imaginable, realized $10,980. Lot #602, a Winchester U.S. M1 Garand rifle, made from May 1943 through October 1943, realized $3,965. Lot #584, a near mint, boxed Remington Model 1903-A3 US rifle realized $1,830. Lot #1042, two “as new” boxed Remington nylon rifles, proved twice as nice to realize $2,440. Lot #306, a Colt Model 1855 half stock deluxe presentation sporting rifle in all original factory nickel ponied up to realize $8,540. And lot #599, a deluxe gold inlaid and engraved Weatherby rifle – described by Morphy’s catalogers as “one of, if not the most, ornate Weatherby rifle ever produced” – was one of the auction’s crown jewels, realizing $15,250.
Foreign rifle highlights include lot #581, a Japanese type 2 paratrooper rifle with its original bayonet with metal scabbard. This firearm, in excellent condition, nearly tripled its high estimate to realize $3,660. Lot #872, a Russian model 1940 Tokarev semi-automatic rifle, caused a red alert among bidders. This example, manufactured in 1940 and 1941 only, realized $5,490. And lot #498, a rare scoped German Mauser M98 sniper rifle used to train snipers during World War II, realized precisely $3,355. According to Morphy’s experts, this Mauser “is the first example in this caliber we have seen.”
It’s time to hurry up and review some shotgun highlights from this sale. Lot #496, a one-of-a-kind, mint-in-box Browning superposed 20 Ga. O/U shotgun, was truly in a class by itself. This engraver-signed firearm realized $23,180. And many enthusiasts battled over lot #490, a Winchester model 1897 WWI trench gun. This outstanding example was described by Morphy’s specialists as, “one of the finest WWI trench guns that we have seen in quite a while.”
Handguns were another major category that showed well in this auction. Both revolver and pistol selections were of the highest caliber.
Lot #397, a Colt lightning etched panel revolver, bolted to $5,185. This six shot, double action revolver – referred to as the “Sheriff’s Model” as it was manufactured without an ejector – was in near new, unfired condition. Lot #469, a boxed Colt pre-war Fitz snubnosed revolver modified for concealed carry, had a hard time hiding from the spotlight. Arguably one of the rarest Colt revolvers of the 20th century, this pretty pony realized $14,030. And lot #466, a Colt nickel python target gun slithered its way to $5,490. This gun, which showed no signs of having been fired except for its factory test, came in its original box with its hang tag and instructions.
Enthusiasts also hit the mark with this event’s fantastic pistol offerings. Lot #471, a presentation Nazi Walther PP pistol most likely given to a very important member of the Nazi party, made quite the impression when it realized $19,520. Lot #924, a 1960’s-era French Manurhin Walther PP pistol realized $2,318.00. This firearm came complete with its original box, extra magazine, cleaning tool, and proper label. Lot #964, an early Auto Mag model 180 .357 AMP prototype pistol realized $5,795. This futuristic looking, semi-automatic pistol – designed with a vent rib, adjustable rear sight, and black polymer grips – appeared to be a tool room model. Lot #468, a rare model 1902 American Eagle Luger, soared to $10,370.
Knives, swords, bayonets, uniforms, and other militaria – including some outstanding decorative items – rounded out this targeted auction event. Lot #745, a Japanese NCO Samurai sword with a sharkskin handle and brown enameled wrap, truly had bidders on the edge. This exquisite example with a 27-3/4″ long blade realized $1,586. It was a hat trick – literally – for lot #686, three Nazi coast artillery/army tropical caps. This grouping nearly tripled its low estimate to realize $3,050. Lot #715, a Nazi German M44 field blouse showing little use, buttoned up $2,318. And lot #1171- two cast aluminum Nazi ceremonial flag or pole toppers – waved their way to $3,660.
According to Dave Bushing, Morphy’s Firearms Division Expert, “This sale was Morphy’s largest offering of firearms and related items to date. It featured a carefully curated militaria collection from a single owner. This collection put Morphy’s on the map with some once-in-a-lifetime militaria offerings. This sale also featured some great early American and European swords, a fine selection of Revolutionary war era items, and quite a few surprises in the prices realized area. And building on this momentum, our July Firearms auction, scheduled for July 30 – 31, 2016, is already shaping up to be a real dazzler. We’ve timed it to follow the Gettysburg Civil War show and during the peak tourist season here in Lancaster. As a result, we expect lots of interest and great results!”
About Morphy Auctions:
Morphy Auctions, the finest auction destination for fresh to the market collectibles, is headquartered in Denver, Pennsylvania. The company also has an office in Las Vegas, Nevada. A full service auction house, the company presents over 30 premier auctions annually, as well as monthly discovery sales. Morphy’s team of specialists includes the nation’s finest and most recognized experts in popular collecting categories including advertising; firearms; fine automobiles, automobilia and petroliana; coin-operated machines; antiques, fine, and decorative art; dolls, bears, toys, and trains; cast iron; coins; marbles; and jewelry. Morphy Auctions is owned by President and Founder Dan Morphy, a himself a lifelong and passionate collector of antiques, banks, and numerous other categories. Morphy’s has been in business since 2004 and has grown from two to over 65 employees in over a decade.
Morphy Auctions is located at 2000 North Reading Road, Denver, PA 17517. We can be reached by phone at 717-335-3435, by fax at 717-336-7115, and by email at email@example.com. Morphy Auctions is open seven days a week from 9am to 4pm. For more information on Morphy’s, please visit www.MorphyAuctions.com.