Bonnie (and Clyde’s) 1902 .38 Colt Automatic Up For Auction

When it comes to buying or selling “celebrity” firearms, provenance is everything. The pistol being sold by Case Auctions has more paperwork than a Westminster Kennel Club Champion. “Model 1902 Colt, serial number 7362, found enfolded into the outlaw Bonnie Parker’s skirt at the Conger Funeral Home embalming room of Arcadia, LA in 1934. Letter of authentication dated 5/15/1972, signed by James Lavelle Wade (Sept. 28, 1886 – Dec. 17th, 1972), coroner in charge of the “Bonnie & Clyde” death investigation and signer of death certificates, and by Mrs. Alwyn (Vern) Hightower, employee of Conger Funeral Home. Affidavit witness signatures include Mrs. Ed Conger, wife of the Conger Funeral Home director, and retired Judge P. E. Brown, Second Judicial District Court of Louisiana, serving 1954-1969. Letter of Authentication is notarized by Violet L. Turner.” What’s it worth? Whatever someone’s willing to pay for it. $175k is the current estimate. [h/t DC]

comments

  1. avatar T says:

    I’m surprised that this piece of history is not in the Smithsonian.

    1. avatar ChuckN says:

      Let’s hope whoever gets it will put it in a museum.
      I’d actually be surprised if the NRA doesn’t put in
      a bid so it can go in in theirs.

      1. avatar Excedrine says:

        “It belongs in a museum! – Indiana Jones.

        Sorry. Couldn’t resist.

        1. avatar lolinski says:

          I thought about the WKUK parody.

      2. avatar Samuel Leoon Suggs says:

        Yes it should go strait too a museum, that is once the neccasary 360 and dissembled photoshop and uploading onto the Internet. Brick and mortar museums are almost entirely obsolete.

      3. avatar Caveman says:

        The NRA is too busy giving money to Harry Reid.

  2. avatar Rick says:

    “Six bullets”–I guess that I can let that one go (but I don’t like to).

    “Where’s the seventh bullet? Maybe in the chamber.” Gee, that sounds safe…

    1. avatar Ken says:

      The auction website description of the piece indicates that the “chamber is verified clear”. Yeah, I thought the same thing when the guy said that. Sheeesh!

    2. avatar Patrick says:

      “It actually has six bullets with it. The chamber holds seven. We don’t know where the seventh bullet is.”

      This guy may not have any experience with such weapons, but but it’s funny nevertheless. I guess everyone has to start somewhere.

  3. avatar Jeff the Griz says:

    This is a unique item, but I am very surprised this is being sold and not kept as evidence in some dark locker. This firearm would be the equivalent to one of the firearms found in Lanza’s car after SH going up for auction. Except Bonnie didn’t go to a gun free zone and target children.

    1. avatar Taylor Tx says:

      Disagree, even with the passage of time, Bonnie and Cylde are a part of American History and Americana, Adam Lanza is a piece of shit who history will also remember, but hopefully, the antis will get over using him as a tool at some point and I wont have to see pictures of his ass. While there are no doubt many similarities between criminals of old and modern criminals, I too am kind of shocked that it went up to auction.

      1. avatar Jeff the Griz says:

        The American public has romanced the idea of Bonnie and Clyde but if looking at historical fact they too were cop murdering turds. I’m pretty sure also suffering from some form of mental illness. I was just comparing the difference in times where they kept a pistol from a criminal and now were everything vanishes into a room marked evidence.

        1. avatar Taylor Tx says:

          Ah, that’s actually an interesting thing to think about. Never really thought much about celebrity evidence, I can definitely imagine a few walking out of an evidence room and turning into a “Christmas bonus”.

      2. avatar Daniel says:

        I agree. Bonnie and Cylde were some dangerous outlaws during the Depression of the 1930’s .. . Lanza was a crazy punk . . end of discussion . . disengage and declare . . no Joy !!

    2. avatar WRH says:

      Bonnie and Clyde had the whole mystique of doom-struck lovers going for them. Lanza had a horse-face, a particularly evil form of mental illness and should have been aborted before reaching full-term. He didn’t capture the zeitgeist the way old Bonnie and her beau did.

      1. avatar BT in Afghan says:

        Bonnie and Clyde wer not the doomed lovers the movies made them out to be. Clyde was known to have been a confused messed up bi-sexual who often shared love interests with Bonnie. They were both cold-blooded sociopaths. I would in no way call them anything but murderous outlaws.

        The fact the gun is up for sale does not surprise me as everyone wants to make a buck. I wish them luck. I would not want it. I would much rather have their weapon of choice the BAR.

        1. avatar Taylor Tx says:

          ha My exact thought when I read that it was a B&C gun 🙂 Too bad it wasnt one of those National Guard armory BARs. Wonder whatever happened to those.

        2. avatar Fug says:

          I had not ever heard that Clyde was light in the loafers like that, but it makes perfect sense. In the present day Bonnie and Clyde would be Juggalos or Blood on the Dance Floor groupies.

  4. avatar Swarf says:

    Lot 404. Colt not found.

    1. avatar Scott says:

      Heh, I actually lol’d

  5. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    Wow. I think this is akin to Americana.
    The pictures in the photo album that goes with it are amazing.

  6. avatar bobby b says:

    If it truly is an automatic, it ought to be in a museum!

    1. avatar noofus says:

      Automatic doesn’t always mean fully automatic. The word by itself tends to mean semi-auto. For example, in the caliber “.45 ACP”, the letters stand for “Automatic Colt Pistol”, and refer to automatic pistols like this one. That is to say, a semi-auto, to use the parlance of our time.

      On a separate note, while this gun may be historic, I personally would have no desire to obtain the firearm of a lousy criminal. The estimate surprised me. I think it should go to a museum.

      1. avatar bobby b says:

        ” The word by itself tends to mean semi-auto.”

        Sure it does. In the anti-gun press, we see semi-automatic weapons constantly referred to as “automatic.” In every infamous massacre across the country, we read that the shooter used automatic weapons.

        And the readers who are unfamiliar with guns read that as meaning machine guns – guns which keep firing as long as the trigger is depressed.

        By your logic, we can call them all “assault weapons”, too, since the anti-gunners “tend to” use that phrase to describe them.

        We can’t complain about such inaccuracy if we do it, too.

        1. avatar bobby b says:

          And, I should add that “ACP” ammunition was designed with more rounded edges so that it would work smoothly in automatic-feed weapons such as “semi-automatic” and “automatic” weapons. The “automatic” part of “ACP” does not refer to the weapon in which it is being used.

  7. avatar Jason says:

    Abortion is murder. His mother shouldn’t have had those guns in the house or let him play those video games.

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      Wat.

    2. avatar Marcus Aurelius says:

      Clyde had video games?

    3. avatar jwm says:

      If my daughter was smoking crack I’d pull her out of school. I would.

  8. avatar WV Cycling says:

    I’m asking a stupid question.

    Was the Model 1902 “High Tech” at the time when Bonnie utilized it?

    It isn’t very visually dissimilar than today’s handguns, but it’s 80 years old, is why I’m asking.

  9. avatar John McPherson says:

    I live in Knoxville, and the local papers story spells out the lack of real evidence that this gun was ever involved with B&C. The documents presented may be real but they do not support the claim 100%. Nor is there any secondary verification. Much of what is presented is heresay. A good story but??????

    Zelda (James) who was Jesse James mother sold and documented many pistols as having been Jesse’ own and we all know those are fakes. Do some digging into this story and make up your own mind. Never buy the story, buy the gun.

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