Just got this thing. A bit overpriced but it is a single digit serial and in excellent shape.
A brief description
Here is a patent.While having the appearance of a semi-auto pistol, the barrel actually tips down for loading by a spring loaded release on the left side. The pistol then must be manually cocked by pulling rearward on the cocking piece extending from the rear of the frame. Adjustable rear sight with blade/bead front sight, full blue finish and checkered hard rubber grips. These odd Stevens pistols don’t show up very often and many collectors have never seen one!
https://patentimages.storage.googleapis ... 338381.pdf
The odd thing is that at this time (~1920) colt and others had marketed things like this
Which had a magazine capacity of 10 or more cartridges (not "bullets" you ignorant slut). If you wanted the purity of a single shot pistol you'd buy one of those german things that I posted. This thing, OTOH, looks for all the world like a semi auto but isn't. It is like a gorgeous transvestite... when you get it home you find you have been duped.
A cursory search suggests that they were made between 1919 and 1933 and that about 7000 were made. Thats 15 years of production which means <compute add subtract mumble mumble sharpen pencil> ~450 a year. That is not a business, it's a hobby.
Shooting, particularly target shooting was changing back then. This thing was a cul de sac, a good design that solved a problem that really did not exist.
Did I tell you about the angle lamp? Another thing I collected, it's propinquity to this pistol (and other things, actually) suggesths thate there is a "type" of thing that, far from anticipating a problem and solving it, solves somethnig that is no lnger a problem. What would you call such a thing I wonder.
See where the wick comes out? To the side ... at an ... angle ... what this did was to eliminate the shadow that other kerosene lamps cast. Brilliant. A wonder in the 1890's.
The first generating station was opened in September 1882 on Pearl Street in lower Manhattan.
Anyway, I think I might actually write something on this area.