Rock Island Auction Company's Premiere Auction of April 28-30, 2007 brought over $7.5 million in sales--a great way to kick off RIA's year after having achieved a new industry record of $19 million in overall sales in 2006.
Lot 1649 - Exceptional U.S. Winchester Model 1897 Trench Shotgun, sold for $13,800.
With construction wrapping up on Rock Island Auction Company's 8,000 sq. ft. expansion to 23,000 sq. ft., collector's gathered on a sun-filled weekend ready to take part in one of the highest quality auctions in company history. Exceptional conditioned and rare Winchesters, Colts, Civil War items as well as a diverse grouping of estate type items garnered much of the excitement over the weekend.
The sale consisted of many surprises including a new world record, which was set for a holster rig. An 1880's Indian Territory 'Mexican Loop' holster and cartridge belt sold for a new record $31,625, exceeding the high estimate by more than $11,000. It is believed another record was set for a non-engraved, civilian Henry rifle at $172,500 as well as an officer's model Springfield Trapdoor rifle selling at $54,625. However, the real pearl of the auction was a magnificent Colt "C Company" Walker selling for $276,000. Another top performer was a large battleground painting of Joan of Arc which sold for $25,875, an astonishing $15,000 over the high estimate. With so many people interested in these rare items, the bidders were not always willing to back down. In fact, over 25% of the 2700 lots sold over the high estimate. Heavy competition pushed an exceptional Colt Bisley flat-top revolver all the way up to $43,125, well above the high estimate of $25,000.
Owner Patrick Hogan stated, "We had high hopes for this auction and we achieved the second best auction total in our history. This was the most diverse auction we have ever held. We always expect to hit new highs on firearms, but the non-gun items were a pleasant surprise by receiving $30,000 plus for a holster and a motorcycle bringing over $50,000. This auction is proof that guns are a good investment with five of the six Henry rifles bringing at least over $50,000".
The gathering of over 1500 firearms classified as Antique and Curio/Relic sold particularly well over the weekend, with the Winchesters and Colts leading the way. Additionally, there was strong representation from many other antique manufacturers represented in flintlock and percussion arms, such as the rare Samuel Hawken half stock percussion rifle selling for $40,250. The pristine U.S. Springfield Model 1875 Officer's Trapdoor rifle selling for $54,625, represented the second Trapdoor rifle to sell for more than $50,000 since 2006 at Rock Island Auction Company.
? Lot 1051 - Exquisite Deluxe Factory Engraved Pair of Exhibition/Engraved Gold and Silver Finished Remington Model 1871 Single Shot Pistols with Monogrammed Ivory Stocks, sold for $28,750.
? Lot 3186 - Exceptional, Un-issued Sharps New Model 1863 Conversion Rifle, sold for $23,000.
? Lot 1008 - Outstanding Factory Engraved Merwin Hulbert & Co. Single Action Revolver with Pearl Grips, sold for $14,950.
The six Henry rifles highlighted the top quality and condition found in excess at the April sale. The incredible near mint early civilian Civil War era Henry rifle was the standout item, selling for an impressive total of $172,500. Four of the other five Henry rifles each selling over $50,000 were rich in condition and shined bright over the weekend with an engraved, early production Henry lever action, selling for $57,500.
Lot 3165 - Desirable Civil War U.S. Contract Martial Henry Rifle, sold for $54,625.
? Lot 3165 - Desirable Civil War U.S. Contract Martial Henry Rifle, sold for $54,625.
? Lot 1176 - Outstanding Henry Lever-Action Rifle, sold for $54,625.
? Lot 3335 - Exceptional Henry Lever Action Rifle, sold for $51,750.
An extremely rare Colt "C Company" Walker was the auction's top seller, leading the way for the quality grouping of Colts offered by Rock Island Auction Company, selling for $276,000. Continuing with rarity, an excellent Colt Paterson also did very well selling for $149,500. The high conditioned Dragoons, 1851's, 1860's, 1861's and 150 single actions also sold phenomenally well, for the second consecutive impressive performance by Colts at Rock Island Auction Company.
? Lot 3418 - Extraordinary Factory Engraved, Nickel Plated Prewar Colt Single Action Army Revolver with Carved Pearl Eagle Grips, sold for $54,625.
? Lot 3107 - Exceptional and Rare Colt Model 1860 Fluted Cylinder Army Revolver, sold for $54,625.
? Lot 3103 - Spectacular Factory Engraved Presentation Colt Model 1851 Revolver with Civil War 127th Illinois Officer Inscription, sold for $51,750
Union and Confederate Arms
Excellent Civil War firearms were offered to the public including pieces from both Union and Confederate forces. The unique items offered included a grouping of father and son (both Generals) Union and Confederate items, which sold for an impressive $20,700. Also offered were outstanding Confederate pistols including two Leech & Rigdons and a Griswold & Gunnison, as well as a presentation Ames Model 1850 staff and field officers sword.
? Lot 3150 - Rare Confederate Griswold and Gunnison Percussion Revolver, sold for $28,750.
? Lot 3201 - Rare Confederate Leech & Rigdon Single Action Percussion Revolver with Letter, sold for $17,250.
? Lot 3128 - Exceptional Rare Lindsey Two Shot Army Percussion Pistol, sold for $10,925.
The U.S. military arms in this auction ranged from the Revolutionary War era on through to WWII. There were mint Trapdoors, near new experimental type rifles, as well as Snipers, an M1 Garand Gas Trap and many experimental and high conditioned Model 1911 pistols. The top selling lot of the impressive grouping of 1911's offered was a Presentation M1911A1 Singer to An Employee, selling for $40,250. Many other highly sought after 1911's also attracted much attention such as the Colt model 1900 Sight Safety selling for $12,650.
? Lot 3031 - Very Scarce and Desirable U.S. Surcharged Revolutionary War First Model Brown Bess Musket, sold for 25,875.
? Lot 1649 - Exceptional U.S. Winchester Model 1897 Trench Shotgun, sold for $13,800.
? Lot 1646 - Rare and Beautiful WWII Underwood Factory Presentation M1 Carbine, sold for $10,925.
German & Japanese Military
The selection of European military arms were a pleasant surprise with the frontrunner being a rare 20-shot Broomhandle with stock selling for $48,875. One of the finest known Luftwaffe cased Survival Drillings also sold particularly well, garnering $31,625. A rare and desirable 1902 Luger carbine also sold very well bringing $17,250.
Lot 1536 - Exceptionally Rare, beautiful condition, "Putzstock" Mauser "20 Shot" Flatside Cone Hammer Broomhandle Semi-Automatic Pistol Serial Number 5 with Serial Number 15 shoulder stock and tool, sold for $48,875.
? Lot 1541 - Rar e Early German Borchardt Semi-Automatic Pistol with Shoulder Stock, sold for $16,100.
? Lot 1519 - Presentation Walther Model PPK With Party Leader Grips, With Dr Hellmuth Inscription and Party Leader Holster, sold for $14,950.
? Lot 1518 - Documented Historic Nazi General Anton Dostler's RZM, Inscribed Walther Mod. PPK Pistol and Holster, sold for $11,500.
Rock Island Auction Company's next Premiere Auction is scheduled for Sept, 8th, 9th and 10th, 2007.