News-Antique.com - Jul 28,2009 - DALLAS, TX – The small pistol gangster John Dillinger was carrying hidden in a sock when he was arrested in Tucson, Arizona 75 years ago – six months before he was fatally gunned down in Chicago – was sold for $95,600 at Heritage Auction Galleries’ July 25 Grand Format Arms & Militaria Auction. The winning bid was more than double the pre-auction estimate of $35,000-$45,000. All prices include Buyer’s Premium.
"It's a Remington .41 caliber Double Derringer that was confiscated from Dillinger when he and members of his gang were taken into custody in Tucson in January 1934," said Dennis Lowe, Director of Militaria at Heritage. "The winning bidder is a Los Angeles area collector and the consignor is a member of a prominent Tucson family who also wants to remain anonymous. He owned this historic gun for 50 years but sold it because of his declining health."
According to affidavits, said Lowe, the Derringer was found hidden in one of Dillinger's socks when he was arrested on January 25, 1934, and Tucson Sheriff, John Belton, gave it to Deputy Probation Officer, Evelyn B. Jenney. Jenney's son, William LeBaron Jenney III, sold it to the current owner in 1959, where it remained for a half century.
"The consignor proudly showed it to family members and close friends over the years,” said Lowe, “but he never publicly displayed it.”
The number two lot of the auction came in the form of a true prize for sophisticated collectors of California or Western memorabilia: A most rare, exquisitely conserved Half Seat Saddle by S.C. Foy of Los Angeles, circa 1870, brought an impressive $20,315 total.
“This is possibly the finest example of this iconic maker's work known to exist,” said Lowe. “Foy moved to California in 1854 and opened his harness business at 217 Los Angeles Street. At the time of his death, in 1901, it was the oldest operating business in the city of Los Angeles. This magnificent saddle is absolutely superb.”
The United States Army Headquarters Flags of Lt. Gen. John McAllister Schofield, Commanding General from 1888 to 1895, wowed collectors with their brilliant colors and impressive history, eventually enticing a buyer to the tune of $17,925; an important medal and document grouping relating to Lt. Col. Edwin Fisher Gardner – onetime Deputy Surgeon General of the United States – went to an erudite collector for $12,550, while s very rare and impressive 1647 Dutch Bronze Gun Tube, with an American Revolutionary War provenance, inspired images of its storied past and brought $11,350.
Further highlights include, but are not limited to:
Exceptional Plains Indian Pipe Tomahawk, Circa 1870:
This interesting piece, besides being a great tomahawk in superb condition, carries verbal provenance of having been originally obtained by Johnny Baker, Buffalo Bill Cody's "adopted" son.
First Model, Inscribed, Nickel Plated 1873 Winchester Caliber .44-40 Saddle Ring Carbine, Scroll Engraved in the Style of L. D. Nimschke, #12348, Manufactured Early 1876:
While unsupported by a factory letter the engraving is