Military Factory logo
Icon of F-15 Eagle military combat fighter aircraft
Icon of AK-47 assault rifle
Icon of Abrams Main Battle Tank
Icon of navy warships
Icon of a dollar sign
Icon of military officer saluting

Smith & Wesson Model 2 Army

Six-Shot Service Revolver

Smith & Wesson Model 2 Army

Six-Shot Service Revolver


The Smith and Wesson Model 2 Army proved itself an instant success when introduced in 1861 during the fighting of the American Civil War.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: United States
YEAR: 1862
MANUFACTURER(S): Smith & Wesson - USA
OPERATORS: United States

Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible. * Calibers listed may be model/chambering dependent.
ACTION: Single-Action
CALIBER(S)*: .22 Rimfire; .32 Rimfire
LENGTH (BARREL): 127 millimeters (5.00 inches)
RATE-OF-FIRE: 12 rounds-per-minute
RANGE (EFFECTIVE): 200 feet (61 meters; 67 yards)

Series Model Variants
• Model 1 - Chambered for .22 rimfire cartridge
• Model 2 Army - Subsequent model for military service; fluted cylinder; chambered for .32 rimfire cartridge; dimensionally larger than Model 1 product.


Detailing the development and operational history of the Smith & Wesson Model 2 Army Six-Shot Service Revolver.  Entry last updated on 1/23/2017. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©
Colt's major patent on revolvers in the mid-1800s eventually expired and this allowed a plethora of arms-makers to benefit from the development and sale of similar guns heading into the American Civil War (1861-1865). Smith & Wesson jumped at the chance to provide a useful military sidearm and developed a series of relatively small, cartridge-firing guns as a result. This was of particular importance for many sidearms of the period still relied on two-piece "cap-and-ball" ammunition - the Smith & Wesson pistol fired a self-contained, single piece cartridge which protected the ammunitions contents from external influences such as weather and the environment. The gun also utilized a bored-through cylinder which was based on a patent purchased from Rollin White and these qualities immediately set the gun apart from competitors.

The series saw service in the "War Between the States" and proved an immediate success for the Union Army - to the point that Smith & Wesson could not keep up with the wartime demand.

The first offering in the series was named simply the "Model 1" and this version was intended for close-in self-defense. To keep its dimensions manageable (and its weight light), it was chambered for a .22 rimfire cartridge. The follow-up offering, the definitive "Model 2", was appropriately enlarged to fire the more useful .32 rimfire cartridge which promised better man-stopping capabilities in close quarters. Despite its larger size, the Model 2 was still compact enough to conceal-carry for the standard infantryman.

Over 77,000 examples of the gun were manufactured between 1861 and 1864. Barrel lengths of 4", 5" and 6" were eventually offered.

Site Disclaimer  |  Privacy Policy  |  Cookies  |  Site Map Site content ©2003-, All Rights Reserved.

The "Military Factory" name and logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT

Part of a network of sites that includes GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world.

Facebook Logo YouTube Logo