5 Iconic Colt Pistols: Cool Colt Handguns for Classic Arms Collector


Colt pistols carry a legacy in the United States. As early as 1836, Colt guns were entrenched in the American South…

Colt pistols carry a legacy in the United States. As early as 1836, Colt guns were entrenched in the American South and West. Between 1863 and the early 20th century, Colt spearheaded advancements in firearms that changed the world. 

The Colt Patterson, 1903, 1911, Detective, and Python are among the most iconic and collectible Colt pistols. These handguns have made their way into the American lexicon, from the Western frontiers to modern Holywood movies. Cool Colt pistols has a special place in the collection of any firearms enthusiast.


Iconic Colt Pistols: 5 Colt Firearms that Every Collector Needs

Samuel Colt is, perhaps, the most iconic gun-maker of all time. Colt came to fame in the early 19th century. Along with John Browning, Samuel Colt invented the very first revolver. 

It is said, that Colt revolvers were among those that “won the West.” Colt pistols, like the 1911 are featured in almost every war movie, between World War I (WWI) and Vietnam. And, the original Colt manufacturing complex, in Hartford Connecticut, is currently being preserved as a National Park by the National Park Service. 

Needless to say – Colt is immortalized in the American spirit and foundation. Gun collectors appreciate the history behind Colt, because it is parallel to the history of America. So, here are 5 iconic Colt pistols that you need in your collection:


1. Colt Patterson

The Colt Patterson is the first and most critical of all Colt pistols. Samuel Colt unveiled the Patterson in 1836 as the world’s first commercial repeating revolver. The Colt Patterson, as it was manufactured in 1836, holds 5-shots and is chambered for .28 caliber rounds.

But, the original model did not feature a loading lever, making it necessary to take the gun apart to reload. In 1839, however, Colt upgraded the Patterson to feature a reloading lever and capping window. This feature enabled the shooter to reload by hinging the chamber away from the firing mechanism, without the need to disassemble.

To clarify, the Colt Patterson offered a substantial firepower improvement to the leading handgun of the day. The firearms reliability in combat, however, is not desirable. It soon gives way to Colt pistols, like the Colt Single Action Army, but the Patterson remains a highly collectible Colt Pistol.   


2. Colt Model 1903

The Colt Model 1903 was a joint effort between Colt and John M. Browning. Browning designs the pistol and sells Colt the exclusive rights to manufacture and sell the gun. It is the basis of the design for the legendary Colt 1911. 

The Colt Model 1903 is a great collectible firearm, and many are still in safe firing-condition. One of the gun’s exciting features is a seemingly-hammerless design, in which, the frame conceals the hammer. This made the Colt 1903 a convenient model to carry on one’s person without a holster. 


3. The Colt 1911 Government Pistol

The 1911 Government model Colt pistol is a gold-standard in reliability, innovation, and design. The Colt 1911 signifies another one of John Browning’s invaluable contributions to the evolution of firearms engineering. To this day, the 1911 is in use by special forces units and private shooters all over the world. 

The M1911 unveiled shortly before the start of WWI. In WWI, the 1911 receives acclaim from soldiers in trench-warfare and becomes the standard-issue sidearm by the United States Military for WWII. The Colt 1911 model continued to see regular action in the Korean War and Vietnam. 


4. Colt Detective 

Colt has always been a forefront leader in revolvers, dating back to the companies founding in the mid-1800’s. By 1927, Colt unveils it’s newest innovation in revolver engineering, with the Colt Detective or Dick Special. The Detective was small enough to carry in a coat pocket and would go on to become the basis for the Colt Cobra.

This little revolver becomes unanimous with film noir and murder mystery investigation stories, thanks to brilliant marketing. But, the Colt Detective is the basis for many other Colt pistols and revolvers that are iconic in detective flicks, like the Colt Python. 


5. Colt Python

The Colt Python is one of the most popular Colt pistols of all time and is acclaimed as one of the best revolvers ever made. Also known as the .357 Magnum, the Python makes Americans think of Magnum P.I. and Dirty Harry. 

And, along with the others in Colt’s snake gun series, the Python is an essential inclusion for any serious collection of Colt pistols. And, unlike older firearms – like the Colt Patterson – Python’s are itching to go out to the range.


Final Thoughts on Colt Pistols

There are more Colt pistols that deserve a special place in your collection, but these five iconic Colt pistols hold significance in history. Collecting firearms offers you a look into the history and background that brought you where you are, now. Above all, Colt pistols carry the engraving of America’s history. 

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