Samuel COLT

Family tree of Samuel COLT

Inventor

AmericanBorn Samuel COLT

American inventor and industrialist

Born on July 19, 1814 in Hartford, Connecticut, USA , United States

Died on January 10, 1862 in Hartford, Connecticut, USA

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Samuel Colt was born in Hartford, Connecticut, to Christopher Colt, a farmer who had moved his family to Hartford after he became a businessman, and Sarah Colt née Caldwell. His mother's father had been an officer in the Continental Army and one of Samuel's earliest possessions was his maternal grandfather's flintlock pistol. Sarah Colt died from tuberculosis before Samuel was seven years old. Christopher Colt was remarried two years later to Olivia Sargeant. Samuel had three sisters, one of whom died in childhood. His oldest sister, Margaret, died of tuberculosis at 19 and the other, Sarah Ann, committed suicide later in life. His brother, James, became a lawyer and his brother, Christopher, a textile merchant. His brother, John, became a lecturer who killed a creditor in 1841 in New York City, was found guilty of the murder, and committed suicide on the day of execution.



Colt was indentured at age 11 to a farmer in Glastonbury, where he did chores and attended school. Living in Glastonbury, he was introduced to the Compendium of Knowledge, a scientific encyclopedia that he preferred to read rather than his Bible studies. Its articles on Robert Fulton and gunpowder motivated Colt throughout his life. He discovered that other inventors in the Compendium had accomplished things that were once deemed impossible, and he wanted to do the same. Later, after hearing soldiers talk about the success of the double-barreled rifle and the impossibility of a gun that could shoot five or six times without reloading, Colt decided that he would create the "impossible gun".

...   Samuel Colt was born in Hartford, Connecticut, to Christopher Colt, a farmer who had moved his family to Hartford after he became a businessman, and Sarah Colt née Caldwell. His mother's father had been an officer in the Continental Army and one of Samuel's earliest possessions was his maternal grandfather's flintlock pistol. Sarah Colt died from tuberculosis before Samuel was seven years old. Christopher Colt was remarried two years later to Olivia Sargeant. Samuel had three sisters, one of whom died in childhood. His oldest sister, Margaret, died of tuberculosis at 19 and the other, Sarah Ann, committed suicide later in life. His brother, James, became a lawyer and his brother, Christopher, a textile merchant. His brother, John, became a lecturer who killed a creditor in 1841 in New York City, was found guilty of the murder, and committed suicide on the day of execution.



Colt was indentured at age 11 to a farmer in Glastonbury, where he did chores and attended school. Living in Glastonbury, he was introduced to the Compendium of Knowledge, a scientific encyclopedia that he preferred to read rather than his Bible studies. Its articles on Robert Fulton and gunpowder motivated Colt throughout his life. He discovered that other inventors in the Compendium had accomplished things that were once deemed impossible, and he wanted to do the same. Later, after hearing soldiers talk about the success of the double-barreled rifle and the impossibility of a gun that could shoot five or six times without reloading, Colt decided that he would create the "impossible gun".



In 1829, Colt began working in his father's textile plant in Ware, Massachusetts, where he had access to tools, materials, and the factory workers' expertise. Following the encyclopedia, Samuel built a homemade galvanic cell and used it to explode a gunpowder charge in the waters of Ware Lake. In 1830, Colt's father sent him to sea to learn the seaman's trade. On a voyage to Calcutta on board the brig Corvo, he noticed that regardless of which way the ship's wheel was spun, each spoke always came in direct line with a clutch that could be set to hold it. He later said that this gave him the idea for the revolver. On the Corvo, Colt made a wooden model of a pepperbox revolver out of scrap wood. It differed from other pepperbox revolvers at the time in that it would allow the shooter to rotate the cylinder by the action of cocking the hammer and a pawl locking the cylinder in place; rather than rotating the barrels by hand and hoping for proper indexing and alignment.



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