Recently a friend of mine brought a colt .45 revolver to show me. I examined the weapon which had an excellent finish and looked lethal and sinister. I was fascinated by the weapon when I realized that the colt .45 peacemaker as it was called was a weapon of great significance and had a checkered history in the United States .
I decided to delve a little more about the inventor of the most famous handgun in history and was surprised to learn that Samuel colt had an India connection as well albeit a small one.
It must be remembered
His fertile mind soon took in the mechanism and he perfected it for the revolving chamber of the hand gun. We do not know whether colt reached India or not but there is a good chance the ship must have headed that way. When colt returned he marketed his patent in the USA in 1836 and called it the ‘revolver’.
However the revolver was not a hit and sales were slow .this was because of the short range of the gun. But soon the US army realized its worth and used it extensively in its skirmishes with the local Red Indians and also in the war with Mexico. During the civil war 1861-65 the colt was the main stay weapon as a handgun for both the union and the south armies.
The colt .45 called the peace maker soon became a legend and no story of the wild west is complete without it. Rustlers and sheriffs all used this hand gun with deadly effect. The cowboy movies of the wild west with John Wayne and others are a tribute to the .45 and have helped build a legend around the colt. The colt .45 is a heavy weapon and extremely lethal. It needs a steady grip and strong forearm for successful handling. Otherwise the barrel has a tendency to jump up when fired.
Samuel colt died young at the age of 49, but he has left behind an enduring legend that will live as long as hand guns are used. In India getting a colt is fairly difficult as the weapon is not manufactured in India (under license like the Webley). As imports are also banned the ones in circulation command a heavy premium. Not with standing this the colt is a weapon with a macho image and a beauty to own and behold from all angles.