While it is certainly true that value is in the eye of the beholder, there are some guns that are so sought after and collectible that they would be a welcome addition to the collections of most gun owners. It goes without saying that guns with celebrity or historic connections are going to be highly desirable. But because these are typically one-of-a-kind pieces, they are nearly impossible to find or purchase. This list, then, will only include guns of which two or more exist. Of course, the price of some of these weapons may make them unobtainable for many collectors.
"One of One Thousand" WinchestersContrary to what its name would suggest, there were not 1,000 of these rifles produced. Instead, this was a marketing strategy in which Winchester selected one rifle out of every 1,000 they produced and outfitted it with a special barrel, stock, and trigger. This gun was then engraved with the words, “One of One Thousand,” and sold for a premium price. These guns were available in both models 1873 and 1876 but very few were produced. Although experts’ estimates vary, it seems likely that fewer than 200 were ever made. At auction, these guns have sold for several hundred thousand dollars.
Luger .45 ACP
Known today as "The Million Dollar Luger," this gun was the precursor to the Luger Pistole Parabellum 1908
. It was created for submission to the United State Army’s gun trials and it is widely believed that only two were produced. Of the two, only the whereabouts of one are known and that one was sold at auction in 2010 for just under $500,000. It is assumed that the other .45 ACP Luger was lost or destroyed since it has not surfaced in over a century. Nevertheless, it is fun to imagine that this rare collector’s item could be sitting in a dusty box in someone’s attic, just waiting to be discovered.
This single-action revolver was the predecessor to the collectible Colt Dragoon
. The Walker was designed in 1846 and only about 1,100 of the guns were manufactured. As a result, there are relatively few of these firearms still in existence today. Authentic Colt Walkers in very good condition have gone for as high as $1,000,000. Even in poor condition, however, a Colt Walker would command a substantial sum of money due to its rarity and original quality.
Dance and Brothers Revolver
J.H. Dance and Brothers began manufacturing firearms for the Confederate government in 1862. Their six-chambered revolvers were reminiscent of the Colt Dragoon
and were widely used by Confederate soldiers. During the small company’s two year run, only around 500 guns were produced and far fewer are known to be in existence today. For that reason, authentic Dance and Brothers revolvers have been known to sell for $50,000 or more.
Fabbri Over Under ShotgunUnlike the other firearms on this list, the Fabbri Over Under Shotgun is a modern weapon. Only in business since the 1960’s, Fabbri quickly made a name for itself as the maker of fine, handcrafted, Italian guns. A brand new over under shotgun from this maker could set you back more than $200,000. If that is a little out of your price range, they do make other guns that run a bit less than $100,000. While that does seem to be an exorbitant amount of money, these are truly beautiful firearms with elaborate and intricate engravings carved by hand. Because of the labor-intensive production process, Fabbri only makes about 30 guns per year resulting in a waiting list for potential buyers.