Palmetto Pistol        


Description and Photograph




     The Palmetto pistol shown here has seen a lot of service, and the War certainly took its toll on it.  It is a product of 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 tang is stamped with 1853.  The lock plate is stamped Columbia SC forward of the hammer and 1852 is deeply stamped behind the hammer.

     The loading assembly is complete with the proper, original swivel, though off of a different gun.  The tiny mounting block is the only part that is a modern reproduction.  The pistol’s owner carved the one letter “P” into the left stock face.  The stock has numerous nicks, dings and one small chip, all of which are shown, as is the rust pitting on the lock.

     It’s a good representative example of a hard used and put away wet Palmetto Armory Pistol.  The Wm Glaze marking is one of the deepest and clearest you will ever see.   




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