March 29th, 2007 10:12 PM
You have to check out this ebay listing!!!
RARE VINTAGE CIVIL WAR ERA HOLSTER FOR 1911 COLT AUTO Once OWNED AND WORN BY BILLY THE KID.
Two years ago at this time I was privileged to offer at auction a magnificent antique holster previously carried by Union Army Major General Ardell "Butch" Bucheimer. This year I am pleased to be able to offer an equally magnificent specimen of museum quality. The story of my acquisition of this rare historical artifact begins in 1999. I was touring Europe with friends during September of that year, and happened to stay for the night at a remote French village by the name of Bonne, on the way to Geneva, Switzerland. At the Hotel bar, I struck up a conversation with an odd looking buck-toothed local, and though I had some difficulty understanding everything that was said, an answer to my query regarding the origin of the name of the place astounded me. I was told that the village was named after "Zee American outleau, Billy zee Kid" and that the village was actually founded by Billy's wife in the early 1880's.
The remainder of the story I heard that night was even more incredible, but over time and extensive historical research, I have come to believe it is true. It seems that contrary to popular belief, Billy Bonney was not a single man at the time of his death by the gun of Pat Garrett on July 14, 1881. He had, in fact, married a woman by the name of Maria Magdalena, in Santa Fe, NM, in March of 1881. The marriage ceremony was said to have been secretly performed by New Mexico territorial Governor Lew Wallace. I was told that Billy's (now pregnant) wife fled to France in the months following Billy's death at Fort Sumner, and eventually found her way to this area of France to gave birth to a son. It seems that to this day many of the residents of the village are direct descendents of William H. Bonney, although over time the name was Francofiled to drop the "y".
I struck up several friendships that night and continued to correspond with residents of the town over the years, eventually obtaining from one of them this fine holster reputed to be one of the last remaining possessions of Billy belonging to the actual descendents of William H. Bonney. I despair to tell you what I had to give for this remarkable find, but suffice to say, I paid dearly. Although this holster is not Mexican carved or tooled in any way, it is beautifully embossed with the unmistakable "US" in oval (meaning "Union States"), as opposed to "CS" (meaning "Confederate States") It is also marked on the back with the historical name of Catney Enterprises. Louden Jacinto “Cat” Catney, whom I am given to understand was a noted saddle maker in Lincoln, New Mexico territory from 1852-1879, was rumored to have been awarded a contract by the US Government to produce holsters prior to and during the Civil War. Apparently this was an over-run or possibly a prototype that was given to Billy by Catney, to carry the prized, pearl handled 1911 Colt Auto Pistol that Billy wielded so effectively during the Lincoln County Wars. Catney soon after tragically lost his life in a mule shoeing accident.
Had he lived, would “Cat” Catney have achieved the fame and high reputation of noted leatherworkers like H.H. Heiser, Frazier, Gallup, F.A. Meanea, S.D. Myres or George Lawrence? We will never know. Does the fact that New Mexico finally became a state in 1912 lend further credence to the provenance of this wonderful example of 19th century leather-craft? You decide. This important historical holster is in remarkable condition for its age and would be a worthy addition to any collection. Up here on the Turquoise Trail, we believe in truth, justice and the American way. Please e-mail any questions you may have before bidding.
"Starting price bears no relation to item worth, the market will decide"
Q: Sir I have recently won the European Lotto and should soon receive my monies from the English Barrister whom I have retained to facilitate the transfer of funds. As I have always appreciated such priceless relics of our western heritage as your priceless holster I would ask that you entertain the possibility of my directly assigning the proceeds of my lotto winnings to you in exchange for said item? I would assure you that the holster would be prominently displayed here on the wall of the Nigerian Consultant where I reside as Vice Council. I anxiously await your response.Mar-26-07
A: Your Vice Councilship, I might entertain this offer if you would be so kind as to send the contact information for the English Barrister whom you have retained to facilitate the transfer of funds. Shortly thereafter you could expect to receive my Nigerian bank account number.
Q: I have no doubt of the provenance and accuracy of your description of this item as I too am an advanced collector of french ephemera. However, are you offering a 3 day inspection/return privlege? Thank you.Mar-26-07
A: Not at this time, but possibly in a day or less.
Q: Dear Sir- I am desperately interested in this most unique opportunity to actually acquire a piece of our Southwest History- I was born and raised in Texas and have been an avid Western artifact collector for some 35 years- Unfortunately, at this time, I am rather,how should I say, financially under the weather- However, I would be willing to trade- One bird dog pup, a little gunshy but I can almost guarantee that she will outgrow it- One Jack mule, standing 17 hands, partially moon-eyed but has sound teeth and keen ears- 2 mostly grown children and a 3 legged Rhode Island Red rooster- I know you will probably require a little Boot in order to make this trade fair- Please let me know what you allow on this offer- Kind Regards- Robt.Mar-26-07
A: Robt. - By Golly, this sounds like the best trade offer I have received yet. Just give me a few days to check with ebay to see if I can cancel this listing prior to the end date of this auction and you may have a deal!
Q: Does the holster alloow the mounting of the under-barrel ball rammer to expedite the loading and unloading of the black powder, muzzle-loading 38 super cartridges? Is an over-powder wad or ball butter required?Mar-26-07
A: Yes and both.
Q: Are the two humans pictured included in the auction? I have no use for the holster, as my 1911 has the six round .357 cylinder and therefore won't fit due to ramrod length. That said, I'm specifically interested in the second fellow's mustache, providing that it's house-broken and is good with children. Yours etc, H.H. PuddingfootMar-26-07
A: A perfectly reasonable question H.H. - But no they are not. By the way, as you probably know, the second fellow is Pat Garrett.
Q: I can't afford to bid on this rare item, but I was wondering if you had any insight on what bullets Billy might have loaded his sidearm with. I've heard that Billy used Federal EMFJ in .38 Super +P, blackpowder equivalent. However, I've learned that Federal discontinued the line in 1852! It seems unlikely that Billy would have hoarded a stash in that day and age - ammunition is heavy, and a decade's supply wouldn't ride well on a horse. Maybe another option was availible? I understand cast lead bullets weren't introduced until 1872, so he must have used something else - unless I've been mislead. Please help!Mar-26-07
A: That certainly does pose an interesting question. Perhaps one of our other ebayers can answer that one. There are a lot of experts out there, and I have heard from a number of them (that I have not posted).
Q: I dont think that the holster is Billy the kids. It it was it would be marked "BK" and not "US" It must have belonged to someone with those initials. Perhaps Ulysses S. Grant?Mar-26-07
Q: I am also interested in this rare holster, as are many others, I'm sure. Not to throw a negative light on it, but I think you should have it Carbon Dated to make sure that it authentic. Would you back up the auction and guarantee the authenticity if the buyer had the holster carbon dated, and it turned out to be older than you state. I do know of three almost identical holsters that have been dated to the 1700s that were found in a hidden tomb, south of Mexico City. Along with the holsters, there were several boxes of 38 Super cartridges, because (as we all know) having a 45 auto would be against the law in Mexico, which forbids the possession of military calibres, even by outlaws. Also, the 38 Super was a super cartridge for shooting cats, which is an interest of mine, and which led me to the three Mexican holsters in the first place. - - El Fuegotero del los gatos Mar-26-07
A: Excellent idea, Amigo. I will look into that - it may indeed be much older.
Q: I recently was a chaperone on a foreign exchange trip with my daughter's french class and we happened upon the same village. I decided to part form them one afternoon when they were takaing in the Nile River excursion and I believe i happened on the same fellow that you did that eventful afternoon. After several glasses of Pinot Griggio he explained to me the story of selling this treasure to an American and said that you left the leather holster for the clip holder, this rarest of finds. I told him I was from Texas and would love to have it so I could place it in the Billy The Kid museum in Hico Texas. He names an outrageous price and we negotiated from there. Well I bought several more bottles of Boones Farm and got the fella drunk and I bought it for a mere pittance of $285.00 U.S. American dollars. If I win your holster I will have the only 1911 holster @ clip that Billy ever owned. My question is does yours also have the belt loop cut into the back for it to slide onto the bMar-25-07
Q: Is there any chance it was for Billy's Wilson Combat instead of his 1911? I had always thought that Billy passed off his 1911 to his cousin from south of the border, Guillermo El Nino. Maybe my info is wrong?Mar-25-07
A: I would recommend that you go back to your source and verify that the most current folkloristic, astrophysical, archeological and agronomistic methods were employed to substantiate that claim.
Q: I'd like to shed some light on some mis-infomation in your ad. "Catney soon after tragically lost his life in a mule shoeing accident." Catney survived the incident, he just looked like he was dead. Just wanted to clear that up. Mar-25-07
A: Thanks for the clarification. I will have to re-check my source on that and get back to you.
Q: Is this for one of the early black powder 1911s? I have some very old loads that may be from the same era- would you be interested in adding to your collection of Billy-ana? If so I will start an eBay auction and send you the link. Mar-25-07
A: It depends on what you consider to be "early". As you probably know, Colt 1911 pistols manufactured prior to 1911 have negative serial numbers, and the oldest black powder 1911’s have very high negative numbers. Those old black powder loads might be interesting if they were in .38 Super - but of course ebay policy would prohibit their listing.
Q: Please don't post my response because I don't want the snipers out there to know that my max bid is 13.01 and winning Billy the Kid's holster would really make my life complete. I feel like if I'm lucky enough to win it, I could just go ahead die. And, too, it would really look good with my government model which is the actual, personal sidearm that Gary Cooper, I mean Sergeant York, used to capture all those Germans in WWI. So please post, I mean don't post my message. Thanks, SHILOHHOUNDSMar-25-07
A: OK, so, here it is, I mean isn't.
Q: Sir,I am very interested in your rare and historical artifact.The current bid however exceeds my limited funds.My question good sir is,would you be willing to accept payment in Confederate currency and S&H green stamps?Mar-25-07
A: Sir, I appreciate your interest and would be happy to consider an equitable exchange of 80% Confederate currency and 20% S&H green stamps.
Q: I just bought (at a rare collector car auction), a 2004 Lexus G400 that Billy the Kid owned and drove. When I looked in the glove compartment, I found that Billy left his wallet and drivers license in it. Would you consider a trade for his wallet? Mar-25-07
A: I might, but only if it contained his New Mexico "Driver License" and his Social Security card.
Q: i have billy the kid's barret 50 cal. he used. would you be willing to consider any trades? thanksMar-25-07
A: Quite possibly, if you are ultimately the winning bidder.
Q: Dear Mr. Hoffa - i am sorry to inform you that while you were on the lamb in France, not only did the town you hid in drop the "Y", but they added two other letters (side by sie) to your alphabet - a "B" and a "S". albeit a very good story, i believe you have errored slightly. Billy's 1911 Colt did not have those pimp pearl handles that you describe, but instead, it was wrapped with Pachmyer presentation grips to match the magazine bumper pad. If Poncho Villa, who is said to have the pistol, is negotiating in good faith with you for the firearm or attempting to acquire the pistol for his collection, then good luck, but please be reminded that he is a consumate liar - and might hurt your feedback. Mar-25-07
A: Apparently you and Gen. George Patton think alike with regard to pearl handles. As you may know, First Lieutenant George S. Patton, Jr., Calvalry, spent time with Pershing on the border pursuing Villa after the raid on Columbus, New Mexico in March of 1916 and had this to say about the General: "I have tried this evening to give you a picture of the man, John J. Pershing; strong, virile, kindly and human; alive to his responsibilities; and unswerving in his adherence to duty. To me the motto of West Point, "Duty, Honor, Country," finds in him a perfect exemplification."
Q: Do you have the assless chaps that Billy wore with this holster?Mar-25-07
A: The chaps, unfortunately no, but his full floral tooled chinks, branded with the letters BzK, are part of my personal collection
Q: Hm. So, time travel HAS been perfected within our history! Is this perhaps a companion item to Pat Garrett's personal M1 Garand cleaning kit?Mar-24-07
A: Please study Pat Garrett's picture carefully. Part of that kit may be visible in the photo.
Q: "I've got some, ocean front property in Ar-i-zon-a, from my front porch you can seeeee the seeaaa, I've got some, ocean front property in Ar-i-zon-a, if you'll buy that I'll throw the Golden Gate in free"Mar-24-07
A: I just may be interested, Mr. Strait.Q: if billy the kid was killed july 14 1881 and the colt auto did not come out untill 1911. how you that this holster belong to billy the kid because the colt 1911 did not out untill he was dead and gone. the 1911 stand for the year the colt auto came out in some one have lied to you about this holster Mar-24-07
A: Well said good fellow.
Q: In case you haven't caught on, you are listing a holster for a 1911 Colt auto - the Civil war ended in 1865. You see the problem here? The 1911 didn't exist, and Billy the Kid certainly never carried one. Now, a holster for an 1860 Colt Army would be interesting, if original.Mar-24-07
A: I guess I may have to re-think this whole scenario.
Q: Are you also selling the Brooklyn Bridge by any chance? I'm in the market.Mar-24-07
A: Check back next year at this time, it may be available.
Q: I am sorry but I must question the validity of this item. I myself personally own Billy the Kid's Glock 19. Everyone knows Billy only carried the very best weapons, so a Glock was the natural choice for such a demanding pistolero. It was purchased in Italy from direct descendants of Billy himself. Billy escaped from captivity, was never shot by Pat Garret and died in his sleep, a peaceful olive grower in the Umbria area of Northern Italy, 1929. His great grandson sold me Billy's well used and indivualized Glock 19 in 1995. It is full auto and came with a LEFT handed Kydex holster and two 30 rds magazines. It has what appears to be silver inlay with gold accents on it. I believe you have been had sir. I can send you pictures of the gun and of Billy's family to back up my claim. The family resemblnce is unmistakeable. Billy would never have carried such a inferior weapon to a Glock.Mar-24-07
A: By all means, please send photos. And you are certainly entitled to your opinion...
Q: I am not able to bid any higher, as the holster has exceeded a price I am able to pay. But I would like to thank you for giving ebay users the opportunity to bid on and own a piece of history that otherwise would not be available to serious collectors. Your researched provenance is indisputable. You are a credit to the collector fraternity, and I wish you continued success with your wonderful historic auctions.Mar-24-07
A: Thank you, sir, for the kind words and your participation thus far. It is always a pleasure to deal with an educated collector who has an appreciation of fine offerings, along with a keen sense of time, place and the incongruities of life.
Q: What type of wool is displayed in your photo with the holster? If it is true French Wool, you have a winner. Would you sell the wool with the holster? Thanks. Mar-24-07
A: The wool is from a New Mexico sheep. 4-H, and therefore I cannot sell it.
Q: Is said relic the very one which was hidden beneath the obelisk at Saint-Sulpice Church in France, dating back to the Merovingian dynasty? Well that means this sidearm carrier actually belonged to an even more important historical figure before Sir William Bonne. This is the holy grail of all sidearm chalices!Mar-24-07
A: This is an amazing revelation! If this connection is true, it could be the most startling and controversial historical discovery of the 21st century. And it would, of course, add inestimable value to the item.
Q: I have Billy the Kid's original Colt M16 he also used during that same time period. Many people do not know that the AR-15 / M16 was actually used by Union Troops in the Civil War, and that Billy was given one by then President Harry Truman. Since it is an orginal M16, I am sure a trade is out of the question...but just wanted to share the info.Mar-24-07
A: In a future auction I may be offering President Harry Truman's, "The buck stops here" original Buck knife. Watch for it.
Q: is that a lever action FAL Billy is holding in the tin type or is it a L1A1Mar-24-07
A: Common belief holds that Billy carried a Model 1873 Winchester, possibly chambered in .38 Super to match his 1911 Colt Auto. But I have always felt there might be room for speculation there.
Q: Does this holster fit the semi auto version of the Colt 1911, Or the full auto version? Also, do you know what potential calibers of pistol this holster could carry? Mar-24-07
A: Either one in any caliber, although I understand that, like many pistoleros in the Southwest, Billy preferred the .38 Super, even though that ammo was difficult to obtain then (as it is now).
Q: The Civil War was in the 1860's Browning did not design the 1911 pistol until, well 1911, some 50 years later. Actually the holster looks to be a Chinese reproduction made out of water buffalo hide. Are you sure it wasn't made for Buffalo Bill when he toured the Orient? Mar-24-07
A: No Chinese connection here, but I may be listing a very nice prehistoric Chinese knife later this weekend that you may be interested in.
Q: I have always dreamt of owning Billy's holster, butI feel that this sale will end far beyond my price range. I could make a copy if I could get some leather from the strain of the cow. You dont by chance have any semen from the bull that fathered the cow do you?Mar-24-07
A: Not at present. Check my auctions next year at this time.
Q: i have a similar one, do you think it might be one of his wifes holsters? i also heard about his wife and heard she carried an engraved bushmastyr-bayture in 49 cal, with elephant ivory grips. did you hear anything that might confirm this?Mar-24-07
A: I am confident that the holster offered is unique. Possibly later in life, but during this period Maria was known to carry a Lefaucheux revolver in 12mm pinfire.
Q: This is truly an extraordinary find! In my personal collection I have Chaiman Mao's Lorcin and Ghandi's personal bayonet frog- I must also have this holster!Mar-24-07
A: I recommend that you bid early and often.
Q: If I was to bid and win, do you know if I could donate this to the Smithsonain for a tax write-off?Mar-23-07
A: I am almost certain that you could.
Q: Is this holster black color or white? It looks black in the picture, but then I thought, maybe that is really the photo negative and the holster is really white. I would be very interested in the holster if it is white color, as it would match my shoes.Mar-23-07
A: It is indeed black. The picture of Billy is the reverse tintype.
Q: I am currently in possession of Pat Garrett's broomhandle Mauser stock used during his execution of Mr. Bonney. Would you consider an even trade for the holster?Mar-23-07
A: That is a tempting offer. However, I would have to check ebay auction terms and conditions to see if that could be arranged. I will advise.
Q: does this holster have the ultra-rare belt hanging hooks???Mar-23-07
A: The ultra-rare belt hooks are intact.
Q: Does the auction include the correspondence from the French person who sold you this valuable holster? This correspondence would surely add value in the display of this rare item.Mar-23-07
A: Copies of all available correspondence can be provided to the winning bidder upon request.
Q: How does Billy Bonney who was killed in 1881 weild a Colt 1911 pistol in the Lincoln County Wars, when the said Colt pistol was not in existence until 1911? Are you interested in purchasing the M1911 that Billy carried?Mar-23-07
A: Coincidentally, I have recently entered into preliminary negotiations with the Bonne Ancestral Trust to acquire Billy's 1911 colt. As you probably know, Colt 1911 pistols manufactured prior to 1911 have negative serial numbers, and Billy's has an fairly high negative number.
Q: Have you done a leather sample yet, to determine the age and sex of the animal it was made from?Mar-23-07
A: I checked into that, but unfortunately, a comprehensive lab test cannot be performed without severely damaging the holster. However, based upon the suppleness, underlying lighter color and texture of the leather, I would guess it was made from the hide of a 3-4 year old non-angus cow (not bull) of medium stature in good physical condition.
Q: I am very interested in this rare holster. How much will you take to end the auction early?Mar-23-07
A: Although I appreciate your offer, I regret that no amount of money could tempt me to end this auction early. I adhere very strictly to ebay policy on this.
Last edited by QKShooter; March 30th, 2007 at 12:34 AM.
March 29th, 2007 10:17 PM
Lord almighty..... I open that page and a ton of bull manure fell in!
You have to make the shot when fire is smoking, people are screaming, dogs are barking, kids are crying and sirens are coming.
Ego will kill you. Leave it at home.
March 29th, 2007 10:26 PM
Why Ike, whatever do you mean? Maybe poker's just not your game Ike. I know! Let's have a spelling contest!
March 29th, 2007 10:28 PM
Man, he was right, it really is rare.
I am surprised he didn't have any takers. PT Barnum lives!
21 years and 21 days, United States Marine Corps & NRA Life Member since 1972
"The trouble is with the increasingly widespread problem of idiots prancing around out there confusing their opinions with actual facts." peckman28
March 29th, 2007 10:36 PM
I wonder if he has any flints for an AR-15..........
You have to make the shot when fire is smoking, people are screaming, dogs are barking, kids are crying and sirens are coming.
Ego will kill you. Leave it at home.
March 29th, 2007 10:40 PM
Well, if you guys like that, PM me and I'll make you a deal on George Washington's Mosin-Nagant M44. I can't let it go real cheap, but since I'm strapped for cash right now until that wire transfer comes in from Africa, I'll come down a little on what my asking price should be....
"...bad decisions that turn out well often make heroes."
Gary D. Mitchell, A Sniper's Journey: The Truth About the Man and the Rifle, P. 103, NAL Caliber books, 2006, 1st Ed.
March 29th, 2007 10:40 PM
Oh drat, the listing ended, I was going to bid on that, it would go great with my 1883 Colt 1911 .50 cal.
March 29th, 2007 10:41 PM
Forget the holster, I want Billys Civil War 1911 auto and his Ferrari.
PC has become the term for Political Cowardice.
March 29th, 2007 10:59 PM
As a history major I almost feel obligated to buy that for a conversation topic. Right after I buy a Spartan main battle tank, thats next on my list.
Fortes Fortuna Juvat
Former, USMC 0311, OIF/OEF vet
NRA Pistol/Rifle/Shotgun/Reloading Instructor, RSO, Ohio CHL Instructor
March 29th, 2007 11:05 PM
March 29th, 2007 11:09 PM
You should read the 'questions to seller' at the bottom of that page.
They are hilarious.
Are the two humans pictured included in the auction? I have no use for the holster, as my 1911 has the six round .357 cylinder and therefore won't fit due to ramrod length. That said, I'm specifically interested in the second fellow's mustache, providing that it's house-broken and is good with children. Yours etc, H.H. Puddingfoot
March 30th, 2007 12:02 AM
And for 99 cents it can be yours.
Did I mention that I have some land for sale. It is located off the east coast. It may have some water on it. Should be great for farming.
Don't hit at all if it is honorably possible to avoid hitting; but never hit soft!
-- Theodore Roosevelt --
March 30th, 2007 12:13 AM
March 30th, 2007 12:38 AM
Yep, That was me that added that all in up there
The 42 questions and answers on this auction item are a hoot!
I had to add them in here because soon they will be gone.
After 30 days I think.
March 30th, 2007 12:41 AM
I was going to list Billy's full-auto .47-100 "Yellow Boy" Winchester built at the Barrett plant in 1868 but it is to nice of a gun for E-bay
"[T]he people are not to be disarmed of their weapons.
They are left in full possession of them."
Zacharia Johnson (speech in the Virginia Ratifying Convention,25 June 1778)"The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed."
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