MANUFACTURER(S): Colt Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company - USA
OPERATORS: Confederate States; United States
ACTION: Percussion Cap; Repeat Fire
LENGTH (OVERALL): 175 millimeters (6.89 inches)
LENGTH (BARREL): 150 millimeters (5.91 inches)
SIGHTS: Iron Front and Rear
SIGHTS: 5 rounds-per-minute
Detailing the development and operational history of the Colt Model 1848 (Baby Dragoon) Five-Shot Percussion Revolver.
Entry last updated on 2/17/2018.
Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The success of the Colt Model 1848 "Dragoon" line (described in a separate entry) prompted Samuel Colt to design a civilian-minded derivative that was more compact and lightweight. This became the Model 1848 "Baby Dragoon" which carried the same general shape and configuration as the full-sized Dragoon with a redesigned front-end managing an octagonal barrel assembly of 3", 4", 5" or 6" length. The same percussion cap actuation system was retained through the chamber was now of a five-shot, .31 caliber design. (original Dragoons were .44 in caliber). Baby Dragoons featured a square-backed trigger ring as seen in the Dragoon First and Second models, a spur trigger on the hammer and a downward-curving pistol grip. 15,500 Baby Dragoons were produced from 1848 into 1850 and, despite their civilian-minded design elements, were pressed into service during the American Civil War due to a need for all manner of small arms in the war.
The Baby Dragoon preceded a whole line of compact, lightweight handguns intended for the civilian market under the Colt brand label.
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