Model 1811 Pistol

Physical Description:
This .69 caliber smoothbore flintlock Model 1811 pistol was made by Simeon North. It is pin fastened with a full stock and wooden ramrod with a swelled tip. It has brass mountings including an umbrella shaped butt cap.
The lockplate is stamped under the flashpan with an eagle over “U. STATES” and at the rear is “S. NORTH/BERLIN/CON.” Ordnance inspector “HHP” is stamped in the stock. The barrel has proofmarks. One proofmark is a sunken oval with an eagle head over “CT” and the letter “V” below it. “P” is stamped on the back strap by the tang screw. No internal serial number.
North completed the first batch of Model 1811 pistols to change the way the barrel fastened to the stock making disassembly easier. This type of pistol transitioned into an iron double strap barrel band attaching the barrel to the stock. This alteration was created by U.S. Inspector of Arms, M. T. Wickham.
This type of pistol is unusual because it has no internal serial numbers. Authors of Historic Pistols, Edwin Bitter and Samuel Smith believe this was due to a first attempt to add proofmarks to the barrel. Prior to this pistol, barrels were unmarked.
Flayderman, Norm. Flayderman’s Guide to Antique American Firearms…and their Values, Gun Digest Books, Iola, 2007. 9th edition.
Gardner, Robert E. Col. Small Arms Makers: A Directory of Fabricators of Firearms, Edged Weapons, Crossbows and Polearms, Crown Publishers Inc, New York: 1963, 142.
Smith, Samuel E. and Edwin W. Bitter. Historic Pistols: The American Martial Flintlock 1760-1845, Scalamandre Publications, New York: 1986, p. 142.
Currently not on view
Object Name
pistol, flintlock
date made
ca 1812
North, Simeon
Physical Description
metal (part material)
wood (part material)
overall: 15 in; 38.1 cm
overall: 15 in x 6 3/8 in x 2 3/8 in; 38.1 cm x 16.1925 cm x 6.0325 cm
place made
United States: Connecticut, Berlin
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
The Bitter Collection of Firearms
See more items in
Armed Forces History: Armed Forces History, Military
The Bitter Collection of Firearms
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
The Adriana and Edwin W. Bitter Family Collection
Additional Media

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