A rare JH Dance & Brothers Confederate Dragoon revolver will lead Heritage Auctions’ March 17 Western Americana and Texana sale in Dallas.
JH Dance was founded in 1862 to provide guns for the Confederate army. It was originally sited in East Colombia, Texas but was moved in 1863 to keep it out of range of the Union gunboats menacing the Brazos river.
This revolver was based on the Colt Dragoon favoured by Union troops.
Given the speed at which these guns were churned out, the company did not keep consistent records. We do know that it only manufactured around 350, making them extremely rare and sought after artefacts.
The present example was found in the burned out ruins of the factory after the war.
It’s offered with an opening bid of $37,500.
The sale will also feature a set of jewellery belonging to Empress Carlota of Mexico, wife of Maximilian I.
Mexico was briefly under the thumb of a coalition of European powers from 1863 to 1867. Maximilian was an Austro-Hungarian noble who accepted an invitation from the French emperor Napoleon III to rule Mexico.
He lasted four years before his rule was ended, his head chopped off and an independent Mexico proclaimed.
Carlota (originally Charlotte of Belgium) had left some weeks before to try and drum up support in Europe. She survived the coup, but never really recovered.
The collection, which includes a gold pocket watch, medallion, necklace and brooch, is valued at $4,375. All the pieces appear to have been made in Europe.