A Very Fine Royal Mail Guard’s Flintlock Pistol by Harding and Son.
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15" overall, 9" brass barrel engraved around the muzzle 'For His Majesty's Mail Coaches' and on the top flat 'J. Harding & Son Boro London 60' with Post Office mark and proofs. Stepped bolted lock plate, dated 1836 on tail, engraved 'J.Harding & Son' underneath the pan, swan neck cock, pan with bridle and Harding Crowned Arrow Post Office mark. Brass mounts comprising domed butt cap, 'S' shaped side plate and brass ramrod pipes. Walnut full stock with horn tipped ramrod with worm.
Metalwork in very good condition, minor dents to woodwork. One of the best examples we have ever seen.
James Harding, Gunmaker, 44 Blackman St., Borough, 1810; 38 Blackman St., 1811-24; 99 Blackman St., 1825-7; 82 Blackman St., 1828-33. Gunmaker to General Post Office (brass barrelled mail coach pistols & blunderbusses); Union Street Police Office, Southwark from 1816. James HARDING & Son Gunmakers, 82 Blackman St., Borough, 1834-6; 265 Borough High St., 1837-8; 246 High St., 1838-43.
Ex Clive Brook Collection
See The 89th London Antique Arms Fair Catalogue, Autumn 2012, article pages 48-49 of 'Firearms of the Mail Coach Guards' by F. Wilkinson And "Those Entrusted with Arms" by Frederick Wilkinson, Appendix 4 pages 257-258. The mark of a crown above a broad arrow often appears on barrels and locks of this pattern. However, as Wilkinson states, this " special mark is found on many, but not all, of Harding's coaching weapons".