“Pew pew pew. That’ll be a million dollars, please.”
~Gun Auctioneers, Probably?
America loves and hates guns more than any other country in the world, though apparently Serbia is trying their best to give us a run for our money. We’re not here to talk about gun laws or crime in the nation, because God that just sounds like a fucking chore. So instead, we’re going to talk about very old guns that were purchased by very rich (presumably white and old) people, because no matter what you think about gun culture, it is pretty wild to imagine spending a million dollars on some two hundred year old metal contraption that could maybe still kill a person.
The 5 Most Expensive American Guns Ever Sold In Auction
Pictured above is Wyatt Earp’s .45 Colt Revolver that was probably used in the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. We’re just putting that up there because it’s a historic gun, owned by a recognizable figure, and its $225,000 price tag isn’t even close to making this list. Gun collectors are fucking intense, and we have no idea how they manage to snag so much excess income, but here we are. Below are the most expensive American guns that have been sold in auctions. (the second most expensive guns we could find, which we did not list here, were Simon Bolivar’s pistols, which sold for $1.6 million, but didn’t belong to an American so fuck that noise)
Teddy Roosevelt’s Hunting Shotgun- $862,500
This is one of two items on this list where we 100% think that the price tag is appropriate, and honestly we think this one’s a bargain. Owning Teddy Roosevelt’s gun is something that even the most staunch anti-gun advocate would make an exception for. “I think guns are honestly the worst invention in the history of mankind, but what’s that? You’re saying Teddy Roosevelt used that to blast away animals on safari? How much does it cost, I will sell my house to purchase it.” Yeah, that’s right, this F-Grade A.H. Fox 12 gauge shotgun was given to Roosevelt by the manufacturer specifically for him to use on his 1909 safari. So either some rich American currently owns a gun that Teddy-freaking-Roosevelt used to kill an elephant, or some hardworking American scrapped together almost a million dollars just so he could spend all his money on this shotgun, move to a rent controlled studio apartment, and occasionally look at his Roosevelt-approved killing machine while eating a Hamburger Helper for dinner and muttering, “Totally worth it” to himself shortly before they cut off power to his building. Either way, the owner is a goddamn hero by proxy.
1847 Colt Whitneyville-Walker Pistol- $920,000
This gun doesn’t carry nearly the cachet of a Roosevelt-approved firearm. Instead, this pistol was used by a Texas Ranger named Sam Wilson who died in the Mexican War. We’re sure there’s some very good reason for this particular pistol being such a big deal, but we honestly have no idea. It’s an old gun in mint condition, we guess. And it’s rare. But unlike the Roosevelt shotgun, if you came into our offices and told us that you spent $900k on this gun, we’d not be impressed in the slightest. In fact we’d probably take you as an easy mark and try to sell you a stray dog or something.
1853 Colt Revolver- $1.14 million
This gun at least looks fancy enough to warrant the obscene amount of money thrown at it, what with the engravings, the gold, and the classy wooden handle. This gun has some history behind it, though. Samuel Colt himself made it following a gun showing at London’s Great Exhibition that helped put his name on the map. Colt would make gold-inlaid pistols for exhibitions, or to give to state leaders and dignitaries, but not many of them exist—in fact, only 16 of these kinds of guns were made during Colt’s lifetime. So this at least passes the test of “has historic importance to gun collectors, but also looks fancy and expensive to the random lay person.” But still, shit, a million bucks for a revolver? You’d better be buying gold bullets for when you inevitably start using it for Russian Roulette just to feel something.
Winchester 1886 Owned By the Man Who Captured Geronimo- $1.26 million
Geronimo was more than what The Fonz yells before sex—he of course was one of the most famous Native American leaders and fighters of all time. So when he was finally captured, drawing an end to the Indian Wars, Winchester decided to gift the first production piece of their Modell 1886 to Captain Lawton, the man who Geronimo surrendered to. Just this year, that rifle made history being sold for over $1.2 million, which again makes sense in abstract until you think about how much $1.2 million can actually buy. Like, assuming you can get a pretty decent hunting rifle for $1,000, you can buy 1,260 rifles for that price. So basically you can supply an army big enough to successfully invade Costa Rica for the price of this gun that was given to an Army Captain for free because he managed to track down and basically arrest a dude one time. We’re not saying this isn’t an impressive piece of American history, we’re just saying that if you can spend $1.2 million on this, why don’t you set aside a few grand to sponsor our site? We’re really big sell outs, we will literally write whatever you want us to, we promise.
Though this is still not the most expensive American weapon. That honor, fittingly, belongs to…
Lafayette-Washington Saddle Pistols- $1.986 million
Now these guns are worth every penny. These guns were given to George-motherfucking-Washington by the Marquis de Lafayette, and managed to get passed down through the likes of Andrew Jackson before eventually surviving in pristine condition to be sold in 2002 for nearly $2 million. We’re not even going to make fun of the private owner who spent an ungodly sum on these babies, because he or she went on to donate them for public display, since it is an integral part of America’s history. So whoever the mystery buyer was in this case, we respect the hell out of what they did in buying these guns. We also will toss out that whole “fund our site” thing. We’re not above begging. Come on, you had $2 million lying around to buy guns you didn’t even plan on using, why not send that money our way to ensure you get nothing but the most biting of dick jokes and curse-word-heavy articles?