Samuel Colt was born 19 July 1814, in the city of Hartford, Connecticut. The Great Equalizer is a prominent representative of a real American who wants to achieve his goal. He was a skillful, active and resilient man. Often the biography of this gunsmith, industrialist and inventor is cited as a real example of the realization of the “American dream”. Sam's head and hands from an early age worked as it should. He began to get involved in inventions in his youth.
Already in 14 years, Colt presented his first invention, made by him personally, it is about the electric fuse for undermining an underwater mine. Colt even demonstrated the work of the invention to the audience. However, being located too close to the shore, a mine exploded doused the assembled onlookers with cold water. As a result, the young inventor had to hastily retreat, simply speaking, to flee from an angry mob. He hid the boy as a mechanical engineer Elish Ruth, who in the future will become the manager at the Colt arms factory.
At 15, Colt went to study at Amhersky University, but he did not study for very long. Samuel Colt was expelled for the fire that the student committed in the university building. The result of this was that the future inventor of the revolver decided to engage as a sailor on a merchant ship, the brig Corvo, which flew to the shores of India. At sea, watching the rudder device, the inquisitive Colt decided to use a similar mechanism for developing a multi-shot pistol. According to another version, the idea of replacing a rifle lock with a rotating drum visited the head of a young man when he watched the capstan work - a mechanism intended for choosing mooring and anchor ropes. But be that as it may, as the author of a revolutionary decision in the arms world, Samuel Colt is forever remaining.
Pistols have been known since the XV century and were widely used by the armies of the world. They were used both by infantrymen and cavalrymen. But the invention of the Colt radically changed this look. weapons. Before him, a pistol was always a disposable weapon - it was a very long time that the process of reloading it. At the same time, attempts to create multi-barreled samples and thereby increase the rate of fire of the pistol ended in nothing. Therefore, in a real battle, most often they used a pair of pistols at once, in order to be able to make two shots one after another. A revolver with a drum for several rounds solved this problem.
Like many revolutionary products, the revolver made its way into life very difficult. However, his inventor was not discouraged and showed perseverance. In 1835, Samuel visited Europe, where he received French and English patents for his invention - a drum for revolver charges. 25 February 1836, the young Colt was able to get a patent for his first full-fledged revolver. A year earlier, with the help of his uncle businessman, Colt opened the company Patent Arms Manufacturing Co and a weapon factory located in the state of New Jersey in the city of Paterson, 21. The first model of the revolver was called "Colt-Paterson". But the first products of the factory were sold in very small batches, which rarely exceeded 100 units. At that time, the American army refused to buy mass revolvers, calling them “yesterday”.
It was difficult to conduct business without large orders, and after 5 years the plant was closed, “Patent Arms Manufacturing Co” was on the verge of declaring bankruptcy. Trying to find the necessary funds to resume the release of revolvers, Samuel Colt focused on creating an underwater mine equipped with an electric fuse. Together with Samuel Morse, Colt was able to establish the production of submarine cables. Again, the Colt arms factory could only make money in 1847. At this time, the American army was preparing for war with Mexico. Before the war, the government placed an urgent order for 1000 new, modified revolvers from Colt. Under this new government order, the Colt, together with their companion Captain Walker, created a new model, called the Colt Walker.
The novelty has proven itself in the army, and the name of the Colt thundered all over the country. In 1852, the Colt receives a new government order, this time it was necessary to produce a large batch of revolvers for naval officers. Finding greater financial independence, the gunsmith in the same year acquires the "Southern Meadows", the so-called wasteland, located not far from Hartford. Moreover, every spring it flooded and Colt had to build a dam there. In 1855, a large weapons factory was built here, which still exists today. At his arms factory, Samuel Colt was one of the first to introduce progressive measures of social protection of workers: he built a recreational center, comfortable homes for workers, sought to limit manual labor as much as possible using various machines and mechanisms.
In 1861, the Civil War began in the states. At the same time Colt's revolvers widely used both warring parties. During this time, his company has sold hundreds of thousands of small arms. However, Colt himself did not live to see the end of the war; he died in the second year of the war 10 in January 1862. Gunner died suddenly in his hometown of Hartford at the age of just 47 years. As they wrote in the press, he died "from natural causes." Colt's funeral was held at public expense. At the same time, he left behind a huge fortune - 15 million dollars, at today's rate it is about 360 million dollars. In his years, he was among the ten richest people in America. From the moment Samuel Colt entered the arms business until his death, the company under his command launched more than 400 thousands of various small arms.
Although the earthly Colt turned out to be relatively short, the brand "Colt" outlived its creator. Weapons under this brand took part in major events that not only defined the borders of the United States, but also laid many features of American society and American character. Colt revolvers were in service with not only the US Army. Any citizen of the country could freely acquire a revolver, which was not such an expensive purchase. The Colt turned out to be the most reliable means of protection in the event of a gangster attack. Moreover, the presence of firearms for all parties to a conflict often allowed the situation to be “resolved” by peaceful means. No wonder some of the most famous revolvers - the long-barreled cavalry revolver 45 caliber (11,43 mm) was officially called Peacemaker (Peacemaker), and the nickname “Wild West Conqueror” stuck to it.
The armory company, founded by Colt, still exists today. Colt's Manufacturing Company remains one of the most recognizable brands in the arms world. For your 173-year-old story The company produced more than 30 million units of various firearms (during the lifetime of the founder, there were a total of 400 thousand gun barrels). Among the company's products were not only revolvers and pistols, but also rifles, for example, the world-famous M16 automatic rifle. In 2002, the company was divided into Colt Defense and Colt's Manufacturing Company, the first of which serves the military market, and the second - the civilian.