Whitney 1871 Revolver
Ely Whitney was an American inventor. Famous for the Cotton Gin and Firearms. Whitney produced arms for Samual Colt and many others. Whitney was on the of inventors who recognised that interchanged parts would lead to mass production. The Cotton Gin was one of the Key inventions that lead to the end of the Civil war.
Whitney Arms Company was formed from the Whitney Armory (Whitneyville Armory) after its incorporation in June, 1863 and began firearms production in 1798. Eli Whitney Sr. & Eli Whitney Jr. were prominent figures and prolific producers in the arms manufacturing world for a great many years, and their production plant in New Haven is credited as being the first major manufacturer of commercial firearms in America. The Whitneys produced a tremendous variety of firearms under family ownership for approximately 90 years before selling the company to Winchester in 1888. Numerous longarms, starting with the Whitney 1798 U.S. Contract Musket, and moving forward through various other flintlock, percussion, rimfire, and centerfire rifles, handguns, and shotguns, contributed to the vast broadness of the Whitney line.
Factory Engraved Whitney Model No. 1 Revolver, made circa the 1870s in New Haven, Connecticut. Around 3,500 of these revolvers are estimated to have been manufactured Eli Whitney Jr.’s Whitneyville Armory in the 1870s. This example is a standard No. 1 revolver with a short fluted cylinder. Mother of Pearl grips
Engraved by Louis Daniel Nimschke who was a master engraver of the period.
Unlike most engravers of the 19th century who worked directly for firearms manufacturers, Nimschke maintained his own shop in New York City and took work on a contractual basis. His main client was New York outfitter Schuyler, Hartley and Graham. When a special custom order that required utmost detail needed to be filled the firearms companies would commission Nimschke for the work.
Ninschke engraved firearms for Theodore Roosevelt, George Armstrong Custer, Maria Christina of Austria, Buffalo Bill, Ben Thompson, and Napoleon III, Emperor of France. Nimschke's work is on display at many museums throughout the world including the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Many engravers emulated his style, which has become known today as "Nimschke School" or "New York Style" of engraving.