New England Holster Pistol

Physical Description:
This .51 caliber smoothbore flintlock holster pistol was made in New England around 1815. It has brass furniture including a brass barrel. It is pin fastened with a Ketland lock. The lock has floral engraving and a gooseneck hammer. It is a “sleigh” design lockplate. The iron tang has a spear point filial. The stock is cherry wood with a beaver tail carving around the tang and brass nose cap.
It is stamped “KETLAND” and “L” on the inside of the lockplate.
It is impossible to identify a maker. The engravings and bluing were used by lockmakers in England in the 18th and 19th centuries. However, these engravings also can be found on some American pistols.
Flayderman, Norm. Flayderman’s Guide to Antique American Firearms…and their Values, Gun Digest Books, Iola, 2007. 9th edition.
Smith, Samuel E. and Edwin W. Bitter. Historic Pistols: The American Martial Flintlock 1760-1845, Scalamandre Publications, New York: 1986, p. 250.
Currently not on view
Object Name
pistol, flintlock
date made
ca 1815
Physical Description
metal (part material)
wood (part material)
overall: 13 1/4 in; 33.655 cm
overall: 13 1/4 in x 5 3/4 in x 2 in; 33.655 cm x 14.605 cm x 5.08 cm
place made
United States: New England
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
collector/donor 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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