|Description and Photograph||
This single shot pistol was made at the Palmetto Armory in Columbia, South Carolina. The Palmetto Armory was founded in the early1850s by William Glaze to make and supply arms to South Carolina’s State Militia. The armory had a contract with the state government to supply one thousand pair of these pistols and assorted other arms. The pistol contract was later reduced to 1,000 pistols, or 500 pair. He was to begin delivery in January of 1852, but no pistols were delivered until well into 1853. Glaze did manage to complete this contract in 1853.
All of these pistols were owned by the state of South Carolina and as such they were housed at the state arsenal. After the secession fever of the early 1850s died down, the pistols were no longer needed and remained in storage until 1860 when a clash between North and South seemed inevitable. The arms stored in the arsenal were issued to South Carolina’s troops and used throughout the War.
The Palmetto pistol is made on the U.S. model 1842 pattern. It has a .54 smoothbore barrel. The barrel is deeply marked Wm Glaze & Co on the left barrel flat. The breech is clearly stamped with a Palmetto tree and a “V”. The lock plate is stamped Columbia SC forward of the hammer and 1852 is deeply stamped behind the hammer.
The pistol is in excellent, original condition. The bore is in very good condition. The wood is extremely nice, having very sharp edges. The tang date is obliterated, but the Wm Glaze & Co, date and Palmetto Armory stamping are unusually crisp and deep, the stock’s edges are also remarkably sharp. The pistol is in remarkably good condition, and it would be naturally assumed that it saw little use, but the pocking around the breech shows that it was fired many times. The owner must have prized it highly considering how well he cared for it and he carved his initials “JG” into the reverse stock face.
These pistols are so easily faked that I am very skeptical of them. Because of this, I seldom sell one, but this pistol came from Dr. Fred Novy’s collection so there is no doubt of its authenticity. Therefore, I am glad to have it. For those who do not know Dr. Novy, let me introduce him. Dr. Novy has spent more than a decade collecting and studying the Palmetto Armory products. He no doubt knows more about them than anyone living, and it is he that settles all questions of authenticity relative to Palmetto Armory products presented to him by the collecting/dealer community. The pistol comes with his detailed examination report, a copy of which is shown with the images. His report indicates that it was part of the Fuller Collection in 1944.
This is a wonderful example, worthy of the finest collection.