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The Second Mass and Its Fighting Californians

A Reference site of images, articles, artifacts of the Second Massachusetts Cavalry including the Cal 100 and the Cal Battalion.

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Private Abraham Loane's Mosby Colt


The Andersonville Pipe

The Mosby Colt

See the story below the pictures



When Abraham Loane was released from the hospital in Boston, June of 1865, after having spent nine months at Andersonville (July 1864 – April 1865) he returned to his family in Philadelphia and there in January of 1866 he married his childhood sweetheart. Soon after, he and his new bride returned to San Francisco where Abraham had been living prior to enlisting in the California Hundred.

He brought back with him some family mementos as well as some “souvenirs” of the war. Family lore says that he, like most soldiers, picked up a little souvenir whenever possible. Two of his “souvenirs” are original parchment deeds to lands in Fairfax Co., VA. “Relieved” from the Court House at Winchester.  The most interesting “souvenir” however, is the 36 caliber Colt Model 1851 Navy Revolver pictured above.

Family lore has it that the pistol was captured from Col. Mosby sometime prior to Loane’s capture by Col. Mosby at Mt. Zion Church. If, in fact, he did capture it then it had to be prior to February 1864 when he was home on furlough and would have brought it home with him. As can be seen from the two closeups, the grip has been inscribed on the right side, “Capt----- Mosbys Men By A. Loane” and on the left side ”Captured From Mosby”.

A check with Colt Archive Properties LLC in Hartford CT authenticates the firearm as a Colt Model 1851 Navy Revolver, Serial Number 107103; Caliber .36c; Barrel Length 7 ½”; Finish Blue/Brass; Type of Stocks Wood; shipped To J.P. Moores Sons; Address New York, New York; Date of Shipment July 18, 1861; Number of Same Type Guns in Shipment 50. Attempts so far have failed in finding J.P. Moores Sons and or their records, for possible identity of the buyer.

Mosby and his men were known to prefer and carry the 36 caliber revolver in pairs and sometimes more. In battle it’s conceivable that with multiple revolvers being carried that one could be dropped and picked up later. Nothing has been written saying that at such and such a place Mosby was held long enough for some one to “Capture” one of his revolvers

So the mystery remains, do we believe family lore? Or is it a case of lost and found?

Courtesy of Larry Rogers, descendant.