Object Title

Centrefire four-barrelled pistol - Lancaster Small Frame Holster Model

Centrefire four-barrelled pistol - Lancaster Small Frame Holster Model

Date

about 1884

Object Number

PR.12051

Provenance

Gifted with the pattern room by the Ministry of Defence, Auguist 2005 Transferred to the Pattern Room from the Metroplitan Police

Physical Description

A.A. Thorn Patent oval bore single trigger four barrel pistol.
The single-trigger action operates a rotating firing-pin. A short side lever operates a double top-bite lock with dolls head (known as a 2nd type locking latch).
Plain finish with much original blueing stamped with Birmingham proof marks. The small birds head chequered walnut butt is fitted with a lanyard-loop. The hinged barrels are bored with Charles Lancaster's patent oval bores and have open-sights and a German silver foresight. The barrel cluster is fitted with a self-acting extractor star.
The assembly number,62, is stamped on the bottom of the frame.

Techniques

Forged, Cast

Materials

Dimensions

BarrelLength5.5in.
BarrelLength140mm
OverallLength9.75in.
OverallLength246mm
OverallWeight905g

Firearms/Artillery

Serial Number 7493

Calibre

.380 in

Inscriptions and Marks

Calibre
380 C.F.
between the two left hand barrels
engraved
Assembly number
62
on the underside of the breech
stamped
makers name
CHARLES LANCASTER, PATENT. 151 NEW BOND STREET
between the top two barrels
engraved
Proof marks
Crowned GP (London proof mark), crown over V (London view mark), letters GP interlaced in a cipher (provisional proof)
on each of the four barrels
stamped

Associations

Notes

In 1878, the firm of Charles Lancaster Gunmakers, previously run by C.W. Lancaster who died in that year, was acquired by Henry A.A. Thorn from his widow. In1881 Thorn patented an action for two and four barrel guns, he would subsequently use this patent in the manufacture of both shotgun/rifles and pistols.
The pistols were designed to take a veriaty of calibres, but in the main they would be for the four barrel pistol .455 and .476 government cartridges and for the two barrel pistol the .577 short Snider or Boxer, they were also fitted with Lancaster's oval bore rifling.
In all about 712 four barrel pistols and about 234 two barrel versions were produced between 1882 and 1897.