Collecting Antique .22 Caliber Revolvers

An example of an excellent Colt Open Top .22 Revolver with Box. Photo courtesy of Rock Island Auction.

An example of an excellent Colt Open Top .22 Revolver with Box. Photo courtesy of Rock Island Auction Company.

Prices and Value

It is worthwhile to remember Oscar Wilde’s definition of a cynic, quoted also by C. E. Chapel in his handbook, as one who “knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.” You may value a revolver in very good condition that fills a void in your collection beyond any book value. Finding such a piece is an exciting discovery and a thrill that cannot be calculated in dollars.

Interest in the small .22-caliber revolver field is increasing, but fortunately prices have not gone upward quite as rapidly as have many others of makes and types.

If you select this area as your specialty, you will find prices range from $20 to $50 for most makes, with such better-known and higher-quality names as Colt, Remington and S&W bringing $75 dollars or more. First models, obviously, are worth more, but few values have gone over $200, at least not so far!

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