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Belgian Revolver Given by General Patton to Marlene Dietrich

A Webley-style Belgian .38 caliber revolver, engraved and chrome plated, with bone grips, serial number 1404. It is 6-shot, with an automatic ejector, and was probably made about 1890. It is in a leather bound case and has an 18 karat gold plaque on the right grip both of which were supplied by R.L. Wilson. The case and the plaque refer to the gun having been presented to Marlene Dietrich by General George S. Patton while Miss Dietrich was doing U.S.O. performances for front line troops during Patton’s advance towards and eventually into Germany. This is supported by a notarized letter signed by Maria Riva, Miss Dietrich’s daughter, identifying the pistol by description and serial number as having been given to her mother by General Patton. 

According to the documentation, the gun, along with two others, were handled  by R.L. Wilson, who in 1990 sent them to Greg Martin for sale. He also supplied the newspaper clippings, excerpts from Miss Dietrich’s autobiography, letters from Maria and Paul Riva discussing the pistols, and letters and invoices from R.L. Wilson to Greg Martin. There is also a note addressed to Maria Riva from her mother, Miss Dietrich discussing the gun in detail The excerpts do mention General Patton giving Miss Dietrich a gun, apparently these being among the eleven guns she is known to have brought back with her from the European Theater at the end of the War. R.L. Wilson had the case stamped, “To Marlene Dietrich From General George S. Patton With Devoted Affection And For Protection 1944.” He had the gold plate engraved, “From Gen. George S. Patton To Marlene Dietrich 1944-5." Dimensions: 7 ½ by 9 ½ by 2 ½ inches. Processing and shipping within the continental U.S. $40.00 plus 1.5% replacement cost insurance. 

 

Condition:

The revolver is in good functional condition. The chrome plating is missing in a few patches, most notably along the barrel and on one side of the cylinder. The bore is rough. The grips are very nice, along with the addition of the engraved gold plaque. The case is a very nicely done modern casing embossed with gold stamping, bound in red leather. Wilson had it stamped with the presentation, as he had the gold late made and attached. Witherell's strives to provide as much information and photographs as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Condition statements are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Witherell's. All lots are sold "AS IS" under terms and conditions. Please be advised we do not provide porters nor packing materials for pick ups. We do not accept credit cards. 

Estimate: $25,000 - $50,000
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium
$15,125
03/19/2022

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Witherell's strives to provide as much information and photographs as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Condition statements are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Witherell's. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms and Conditions. Methods of payment are cash, check, money orders, or wire transfer for foreign payments. Please note we do not accept credit cards. This auction has a buyer's premium of 21% when bidding through witherells.com.