The Manhattan Fire Arms Manufacturing Co. was founded by a group
    of New Jersey businessmen in 1856. Their goal was to take advantage
    of Colt’s patent for revolving firearms that was due to expire in 1857.
    The founders hired Thomas Bacon to became the Superintendent of

    Manufacturing began in Norwich, Connecticut and in 1859 moved to Newark,
    New Jersey.  Thomas Bacon remained in Norwich and started his own
    firearms company.  During their existence, Manhattan Firearms produced
    approximately 175,000 pistols. Only Colt, Remington, and Winchester
    produced more guns during this era in which included the Civil War.

    While waiting for Colt’s patent to expire, Manhattan first made copies of
    American firearms that no longer had patent protection. These included
    pepperboxes and various single-shot designs. Shortly thereafter, they
    turned their attention to making Colt-style revolvers in both the .31 caliber
    Pocket and .36 caliber Navy styles. Manhattan patented an extra set of
    cylinder safety notches on these models. Manhattans can be easily
    identified by the many notches on their cylinders.

    After the Civil War, Manhattan production primarily consisted of a copy of
    the Smith & Wesson .22 caliber cartridge revolver and a single-shot boot
    pistol under the name "HERO". Manhattan changed it's name in 1868 to
    American Standard Tool Company and began to market industrial tools as
    well as firearms. American Standard Tool closed during the financial panic
    of 1873.

    Manhattan Firearms also manufactured guns under the trade names “Hero”,
    “London Pistol Company”, and “American Standard Tool”.
Matched Pair of
Manhattan Navy pistols
from Waldo Nutter
collection. Featured on
page 182 of his book
"Manhattan Firearms"
Manhattan Firearms Manufacturing Co.
(circa 1856 to 1873)
You are visitor number
This Website is dedicated to the collecting of firearms made by
the Manhattan Fire Arms Manufacturing Company.

Click on the buttons at the top and bottom of each page to move around the
website. Check out the "guide percussion" and "guide cartridge" buttons for
help identifying your Manhattan firearm. The "pictorial index" button shows
detailed photos of lots of Manhattans! Double-click all photos for a larger look.
Click on FAQ "frequently asked" questions to see what other people
are asking about!
**New** Manhattan Navy
parts guide
(double click this
thumbnail photo for
The most asked question by my friends and fellow collectors is
what kind of email do you get from your Website? The ones I like
the most are the stories of how someone got their Manhattan.  
Here is an email I received that has won my award as best email
ever!  Thanks Kenneth for letting me share your email.  This is a
great Manhattan story.......

comments = Nice web site!  My Manhattan is a Navy series III serial 16490
in similar condition to the ones you have pictures. The story that goes with
mine is somewhat unique. My Great great Great Grandfather was taken
prisoner at Shiloh, when he was later traded for he was given a matched
pair of Manhattans.  He later gave one each two his two sons, his oldest
son moved to California and later lost his Manhattan in the fire which
destroyed San Francisco.  The other son hid his in the barn of the family
farm in Iowa.  This son would become Adjutant General for the State of
Iowa and would return and reclaim this pistol years later.  This would be
handed down to his son, then his son, then my father and now myself.  
I always thought this a nice family story until recently finding my Grand
fathers WWII diary where he describes meeting his great Uncle who
describes this story at length.  His story was different only in the fact that he
added that these guns were given to him by his (friend) the president
Abraham Lincoln. He also stated the Lincoln and My GGG Grandfather
communicated a number of times during his imprisonment before he was
able to arrange a prisoner exchange to have him released.  These letters
were supposedly lost in the great fire.  We have verified that My GGG
Grandfather did know the Vice President and that Lincoln was practicing
Law in the same area that he was stationed in the 1840. Now whether this
is the rantings by an old man shortly before his death or not, it is a fun
This website was last
updated in F
all 2019

Manhattan Mailbag

Write Me!!!!

Please email me a photo of your Manhattan if you get a chance. I never get
tired of seeing a new one. Email to Also I am
helping a Manhattan Firearms researcher in a study of barrel lengths of Pocket
Models and Navy Models. If you would like to help please email me your Model
number,Serial number, and Barrel length and a brief description.

I have so far answered every email to me! But I get a few that did not put their
return email address or it is incorrect. If you did not hear from me,
please write again!!!

Join the Manhattan
Firearms Group!!

Do you have Manhattan
questions or better than
that Manhattan

Write me below or go to:

This is a new Yahoo
Group for Manhattan
aficionados to discuss
their guns.

Also for more on
Manhattan revolvers try
these fine websites
Want to see a Manhattan Navy in Action?!!

My new friend Ernest has taken gun collecting to a new level on the
Internet.  He has made the world's first Internet video of a Manhattan
Navy "in action".  See it now and be sure the sound
volume is on.  Click on the link below.
New Site Search
Try it!!
My Email Address!!!!

My newest favorite

Norm Flayderman's   
Navy Model