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Nagant Model 1877 Gendarmerie Double Barrel Rolling Block Pistol

Hi guys, thanks for tuning in to another
video on I’m Ian McCollum, and I am here today at the Rock Island Auction Company taking a look at one of the guns they are going to be selling in their upcoming June of 2019 Regional auction. Specifically this is a double
barrelled, rolling block style pistol. This is in fact a Belgian Model of 1877
Gendarmerie pistol. And it’s pretty cool. This is actually a product of the
Nagant brothers, Emile and Léon Nagant, and they were … Belgian gun makers
who set up shop in Liège in 1859, and started one of the major Liège
Belgian manufacturing companies. Now they did some inventing of their own, but
this wasn’t a business that was entirely based on creating their own guns. They did a lot of work
with patents that they obtained from other people and contracts that they made with
other people and other manufacturers. For example, the Remington Company.
The Nagant brothers at some point met one or both of the Remington brothers,
probably at one of the big world expositions, and they came to an agreement that would
last for 35 years, until right about 1900. This led to Nagant … manufacturing rolling
block rifles. Probably the best known are the rolling block rifles made for the Vatican Guards,
which came from Nagant’s shops. And this is also another example. So, … it’s
unclear exactly if they were paying royalties or if they had some other agreement by which
they were allowed to use the rolling block patent of Remington’s, but one of the guns that they
went about creating was this double-barrelled pistol specifically for the Belgian Gendarmerie.
Let’s go ahead and take a look at it. This was the first metallic cartridge
firearm used by the Belgian Gendarmerie, and by all accounts it was fairly successful, and it worked
nicely, and they liked it and it did everything they wanted. These weren’t actually replaced
until right about 1900 or 1901 when they were replaced with
the Browning Model of 1899, which was a semi-automatic .32 calibre pistol (which
would actually go on to be tremendously successful), but we’re talking 30 years, a little
more than 30 years, where this was the standard armament for the Gendarmerie. So we have two separate hammers, a single
breech block there that has both firing pins in it. We have a centrally mounted extractor, right there. By the way, the Nagant brothers did actually
patent some improvements to the rolling block, including an improved
extractor to use in the system. This was chambered for the Belgian 9.4mm
revolver cartridge, basically a small black-powder revolver cartridge. Similar to the 9.4mm
Dutch, although not interchangeable with it. So you get two of those,
close the breech block, and then the trigger is a single automatic trigger,
and you can’t fire both barrels at the same time. Pull the trigger the first time, it’ll drop one
hammer, you then have to release it, let it reset, then it will drop the other hammer.
If you only have one cocked, even if it’s the left hand one,
one trigger pull will fire that. After you’ve fired both then, of course,
you have to re-cock the hammers, pull that down, that will extract the two
empty cases, and then you can reload it. Presumably the Gendarmerie didn’t find themselves
getting in a lot of extended gun fights with these. The rear sight is actually mounted on the
breech block, which is a little bit interesting, and actually bigger sights than
a lot of guns of the period have. There are a couple markings on the side here. We
have what is, I believe, a government property marking. And we have ‘EM’, that’s Emile,
and ‘L’ for Léon, Nagant of Liège. Typical Belgian proof marks there. And then ‘Brevet Nagant’, meaning Nagant patent,
and a slew of serial numbers on all the relevant parts. And then another serial number
on the butt, along with this ‘W’ mark. ‘W’ is a letter indicating issue to the Gendarmerie,
Belgian arms at this point were marked by the unit, or the regiment, that they were issued to. And ‘W’ is
the letter that was assigned to indicate Gendarmerie. Total production of these was 2,000. So we’re towards the
end, but still well within the bulk of production here at 1466. Handling wise, the gun’s not bad.
This grip is kind of unusually long, but it doesn’t really cause any problems, but
it seems like it’s rather longer than it needs to be. It’s possible that this is the result of, like, carrying
these things in saddle holsters with a big covering flap, and this extra length to the grip may have been useful
to just get easy access to the gun out of the holster. If that’s not the explanation, I am not really sure what is. But the trigger pull’s not bad. The
hammers are quite heavy to cock, these have very strong firing pin springs in them. So I’m
sure that was part of why they were reliable and well liked. Well this is definitely one of the more
unusual actual police pistols out there. And when I saw it I just figured, do you
know what, that’s a neat story and a neat gun, and just really pretty cool, and I thought
you guys would probably enjoy it as well. If you would like to own this one yourself, of
course it is coming up for sale here at Rock Island. You can check out their catalogue page for their photos,
their description, their price estimate, all that sort of stuff. Any they have a nice system where you can
bid on-line nice and easily, if you are so inclined. And, of course, you can take a look at everything
else that’s in the catalogue for that sale as well. Thanks for watching.

100 thoughts on “Nagant Model 1877 Gendarmerie Double Barrel Rolling Block Pistol

  1. Please do a video next on the Caw shotgun from HK seriously its like the g11 of shotguns ,very rare and uncommon, I think metal gear solid peace walker is the only game this weapon is featured.

  2. A friendly warning. Find another platform. About to dump YouTube.
    Love your body of work and would love to keep following Forgotten Wepons/InRange.

  3. Is this Nagant, as in Mosin Nagant? (I have no idea how to spell the first name, so I spelled it phoneticcally.)

  4. For the first half of the video I've been thinking who Jeanne-Mary was and why she needed so many pistols.

  5. I wish that I could find a 410 version of this (and almost certainly some will been converted) because this would be a handgun that I can legally own and use in the UK as I have a 2 shot 410 pistol permission on my firearms certificate. Before anyone says "why not make one?" It is illegal to convert a 410 shotgun to a pistol under current regulations even for a gunsmith, which means my only off the shelf option is a Bond arms derringer currently.

  6. Do both hammers keep the breech block in place when firing or it's only the one that drops first and the other has some gap?

  7. as a guess maybe the loonngg grip is so you can use it as an effective cosh holding it by the barrels

  8. Oh great gun jesus, have you met with Master matt from demolition ranch? he was there like a week or so ago buying a full auto Uzi.

  9. Isn´t this a bit late to the party In 1877. Why would anyone have a two barrel pistol insted of a revolver.

  10. The Belgian gendarmerie, police and champetres would carry sabres or billy clubs. As the gendarmerie was a military police they would be equipped with rifles and carbines. Pistols and revolvers did not seem tot be needed.

  11. The extra long grip is for pistol whipping confessions! Fun for everyone! Wow, great minds think alike. Actually made my comment then read the previous, very similar comment lol.

  12. "Emile whats wrong you look terrible? Bad dream?
    -Leon mon frere, i had this weird dream where i was fighting road bandits with a pistol…that was a rolling block, dual barreled and smacked one of them right in the face with the handle
    "……Emile you are a GENIUS

  13. Excellent, when one wonders what Ian will produce next he repeatedly offers something fresh and interesting.

  14. I recall an article in Guns magazine many years ago, apparently there was a contract also for pistols supplied to the palace guard of the Russian Tsar, it was basically the same as this pistol. Don't remember now how many the article says were made, but it was not a large number.

  15. I have a Belgian proofed rolling block pistol chambered in .22 and this looks very similar. Iv never been able to track down exactly what it is or it’s value.

  16. I love seeing metal gun components with their mating faces fitted so closely together knowing that each surface has probably been hand filed and lapped in together with such skill

  17. There is definitely some double barrel cult going on at Liège.
    I'm a student at Liège's gunsmithing school and the hammerless Anson is still viewed as the best thing since sliced bread. But there is still a small faction of the teacher that love B25 or Purdey based system.

  18. Colt had metallic cartridge revolvers out by 1871. I really don't understand how a double barrel pistol could have sold well in 1877.

  19. The unknown making looks very much to me like one used by the world trade commission. It is still used to note certain food stock shipping containers. Might be some more history involved with that pistol.

  20. Can you imagine if Internet forums existed then and the outrage of the “militarization of the police” when the cops went from two shot pistols to 5 or 6 shot revolvers?

  21. mr gun jesus, can you track down and do a video of the rare, elusive, and interesting erma mp60's?

  22. Needs to be reproduced and sold with a rabbit pellet shot shell in a smooth bore and hand loadable brass….for 300$ or less too

  23. Wow. They liked it so much that they skipped entirely over revolvers and after 30 years adopted a semi-auto. That's serious love

  24. This does raise a question that I have been pondering recently, why is it that no military (as far as I know) used double barreled rifles. Especially when double barreled shotguns were such common place for civilians. I mean when a military refuses to adopt repeating rifles, the least they could do is offer they're soldiers a second shot. I can see that this would extend the reloading time for a muzzle-loader, but what about when breech-loading came about?

  25. Huh. When I originally saw the picture and read the title it didn't click that it was a pistol. Thought I was looking at a double barreled rifle or shotgun.

  26. I was just binge watching C&Rsenal's videos on Nagants a couple days ago, this pistol was mentioned, then there it is!

  27. THX Ian. Apparently the Belgian Gendarmerie was then "using their gun a little too much", and that resulted in innocent casualties, so the Govt decided to provide them with a 2-shots handgun rather than a 6-shooter (very reliable revolvers already existed at the time). Also note that Nagant patents on this gun included a built-in safety for firing pins, preventing an accidental discharge, should the breechblock be closed too firmly with the pin jammed in the firing position. It seems that this safety is non functional for the right firing pin on this particular gun. Best of luck with your next videos!!

  28. I have always wondered what the reason was behind the…for the lack of a better word, dog leg shape of some old pistol grips. I have rescently noticed this on the Russian contract S&W model 3, and the later Auto & Burglar type pistols among others. This looks extremely awkward and unnatural, though it can't be that bad in practice or it wouldn't have been implemented. My only guess is that it has something to do with the ergonomics of cocking the hammer on single action guns.

  29. Looks like it might be a convertible gun to some type of shotshell. That would be interesting, in my opinion. A double barrel shotgun pistol

  30. So, what was the reason for producing a 2 shot pistol? I don't get it…Not likely Wyatt Earp would have liked this pistol…

  31. I’d love to see a company start making rolling block shotguns today. Or better yet something of the Peabody Henry system

  32. Before Charles Pryse came up with his top break, automatic ejection design for Webley I don't think this would have been any slower than the revolvers of the period. The grip would accommodate the biggest of hands, even wearing thick gloves in an Ardennes winter.

  33. the long handle is for your 3 shot… using the thing as a boomerang (surely i'm not the only person that thought that)

  34. I love it when you pronounce foreign word but i completely I lost it when you said "Gendarmerie" (Jeanemarie, a old fashion giving name for girls) instead of (jean-D'arm-e-rie)

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