Watch: Wesson & Leavitt Revolving Rifle

   08.12.16

Watch: Wesson & Leavitt Revolving Rifle

The Wesson in this equation is Edwin Wesson, brother of “the” Daniel Wesson who went on to Smith & Wesson fame.

In the words of Ian from Forgotten Weapons:

The Wesson & Leavitt is one of the scarcest revolving rifles made in the US, with no more than 50 made (some sources say only 16). The reason for this is that the Dragoon revolver which Wesson & Leavitt based the rifle on was found to be in violation of several Colt patents. Most importantly, when the Wesson & Leavitt Dragoon was introduced in 1850, Colt had a patent on the feature of having the cylinder index automatically when the hammer is cocked. They filed suit against Wesson & Leavitt, and won the case in 1851, before very many of the revolvers had been made.

I really love the way this gun works, with the barrel hinging upward to allow removal of the cylinder. Pretty sweet!

What I don’t love is that there’s no ramrod or other loading mechanism built into the gun, so you have to remove the cylinder to load it.

Other than that, it’s pretty dang sweet!

Avatar Author ID 61 - 33922750

Editor & Contributing Writer Russ Chastain is a lifelong hunter and shooter who has spent his life learning about hunting, shooting, guns, ammunition, gunsmithing, reloading, and bullet casting. He started toting his own gun in the woods at age nine and he's pursued deer with rifles since 1982, so his hunting knowledge has been growing for more than three and a half decades. His desire and ability to share this knowledge with others has also grown, and Russ has been professionally writing and editing original hunting & shooting content since 1998. Russ Chastain has a passion for sharing accurate, honest, interesting hunting & shooting knowledge and stories with people of all skill levels.

Read More