A Very Fine Double Barrelled Percussion Howdah Pistol by Charles Jones. 11 ½ ” overall with 6” 36 bore Damascus barrels, bead fore sight, Birmingham Proofs on underside. Engraved ‘Charles Jones 26 St James’s Street London Pistol Maker to Prince Albert ’ on rib. Tang with deep scroll engraving. Flat scroll engraved lock plate singed ‘Charles Jones’, flat hammers with scroll engraving. Walnut full stock chequered at wrist, silver escutcheon with owners crest and initials ‘E.C.’, engraved butt cap with sprung trap, scroll engraved trigger guard with pineapple finial, and brass tipped ebony ramrod. In its original mahogany case with round lifting ring and escutcheon with owners initials ‘E.C.No.3’. Fitted with accessories including bullet mould, powder flask, cap tin and loading rod.
A pistol of the highest quality in very good condition with most of its original finish.
Charles Jones 26 St James’s Street 1828-42 and Whittal Street Birmingham 1831-43. Gunmaker to William IV, Prince Albert and Louis Philippe King of France.
Provence Dr Robert Rabbet Collection Exhibited at The Craft of the Gunmaker 1640-1870 exhibition at Rochester Guildhall 1991-1992 exhibit No. 88
See Dictionary of London Gunmakers page 123 for trade card.
Sir Edward Conroy, the 2nd Baronet , was born on 6 December 1809 at Dublin. After education at Charterhouse and Christ Church (where he graduated with a Pass Degree in 1830), he went on a European tour. In 1833 he was engaged briefly as an unpaid attaché in the Diplomatic Service at Brussels, and a few years he later he obtained a position at the London General Register Office. The last perhaps gave him a taste for the genealogy and antiquarian studies which were the principal diversion of his later years. To these studies he brought a curious combination of credulity in matters of legend, and critical scholarship in matters capable of documentary proof.
The story of his private life runs like a Victorian melodrama. In 1837 Lady Alicia Parsons, daughter of the Earl of Rosse, eloped with him from London to Gretna Green, where they were married. But the romance did not endure. Soon after the birth of their only child in 1845, they parted, probably because Conroy had a wandering eye. He had an affair with a ‘Mary’ in 1847 and a few years later an ‘adopted daughter’ appears on the scene. She may have been just that, but the circumstances imply that she was in fact his natural daughter, as she subsequently claimed. Shortly before his death, he sent his wife a passionate plea for forgiveness. Her response suggests that reconciliation might have followed, but he died too soon, on 3 November 1869.