Once part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s collection, Alexander Hamilton‘s pocket pistols recently made waves crossing the auction block. The winning bid reached a substantial $650K ($819K w/p). Christie’s listed the estimate as by request, but reports have stated that the pistols were valued at around $500k. Although these weren’t the pistols used in Hamilton’s famous duel with Aaron Burr, they have their own tale.
The pistols, engraved with Hamilton’s initials “A.H.” and crafted by French artisans Jean-Louis Jalabert and Marie-Anne Lamotte, date back to the period between July 1798 and Hamilton’s death in July 1804.
It’s worth noting that these pistols were not the ones involved in Hamilton’s fatal duel with Aaron Burr. That particular pair was sold in 1930 to the Chase Manhattan Bank, now part of JP Morgan Chase. After Hamilton’s passing, the pistols remained in the family until his great-great-grandson, Schuyler Van Cortlandt Hamilton, sold them to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1950.