Watch: 1870s Frankenau Purse Gun

   03.12.18

Watch: 1870s Frankenau Purse Gun

This is one of the more concealable handguns in history, in that it is built into its own disguise. Move over, Ideal Conceal.

It’s basically a small case, one side of which contained an accordion-style organizer for coins or other necessities, and the other side of which enclosed a 5-shot pinfire revolver which used 5mm (roughly .20 caliber) cartridges.

The trigger unfolds from the case and could be deployed quickly, without opening the case at all. Pretty cool idea (patented in the 1870s), but likely costly to produce and there aren’t many of them still around.

Patented in… both the US and UK, the Frankenau purse gun was a very small 5-shot, 5mm pinfire revolver hidden inside what appeared to be a normal small coin purse. One side of the purse would even open, with several accordion pockets, allowing to to be used for its nominal purpose. The other side contained the revolver, with a hinged plate covering the muzzle and a trigger which would fold up into the body of the case when not in use. Few were sold, and most saw a lot of use, making them pretty unusual to find today.

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