Webley/S&W type .22 tip-up Revolver

Steve Johnson
by Steve Johnson

An interesting revolver I came across for sale at gunbroker.com

There are very few examples of these revolvers known. I know of only two others reported in print. Note the distinctive hammer and grip. Seven shot cylinder, Birmingham proof marks, nickle plated brass frame and butcap. A rare revolver.

Two of these revolvers were reported by W.C. Dowell in his book, THE WEBLEY STORY. See also pages 43 and 45 of WEBLEY REVOLVERS by Bruce and Reinhart. These are the only examples I know of.

From 1864 to 1866 Webley had a licencing agreement with Smith & Wesson to make .22 tip-up revolvers. However, I believe this revolver pre-dates that agreement and thus Webley did not want to be known as the maker. Although the workmanship appears to be excellent.

On page 45 of Webley Revolvers, there is a photo of an almost identical revolver to this one. The revolver pictured is serial number 4 with a silver plated frame. Also mentioned in the text is serial number 2 which was reported by Dowel as having a gold plated frame. Due to corrosion of the front of the cylinder and the face of the barrel, the numbers on this revolver are no longer visible, if it ever had any numbers at all.

Like the two revolvers mentioned in the above books, this revolver has Birmingham proof house markings and nothing else. The lack of Webley markings may indicate that this was made before the licencing agreement was obtained. After the licence was granted, Webley produced several different single action models, some of which resembled Smith and Wesson rim fire revolvers and some did not. Webley soon dropped single action pocket pistols in favor of his successful line of double action Bull Dogs. All of the early single action rim fire revolvers are extremely scarce.

Steve Johnson
Steve Johnson

I founded TFB in 2007 and over 10 years worked tirelessly, with the help of my team, to build it up into the largest gun blog online. I retired as Editor in Chief in 2017. During my decade at TFB I was fortunate to work with the most amazing talented writers and genuinely good people!

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  • K.McBarron K.McBarron on Feb 18, 2009

    Hi Steve

    Do you know where I can get either of the following :-

    Chamelot Delvigne revolver Model 1874

    Glisenti revolver Model 1889 (with trigger guard )