There was place for more than one Buffalo Bill in the Wild West. William Mathewson won this nickname during the winter 1860-1861 when he decimated several buffalo herds to avoid the starvation of the pioneers after a catastrophic drought.
In 1864 the Kiowa Indians enter the warpath again. The chief warns Mathewson in advance for intimidating him. Mathewson's trading post occupies a strategic position on the Santa Fe Trail. He informs the companies but it is too late for the Overland Transportation which has just started from New Mexico a convoy of 147 wagons loaded with rifles and ammunition, accompanied by 155 men.
After four days of siege in his post, Mathewson sees that the Indians had departed. He understands that they got a better target nearby. Indeed a few miles away from his post the Indians encircle the Overland train. Mathewson arrives by surprise and manages to unload a wagon and to provide arms to the men of the convoy. Indians give up. Buffalo Bill had altogether saved the goods and the men.
The pair of revolvers is presented to him in May 1866 by one of his customers in a small ceremony of thanks commemorating the Overland feat. The nameplate identifying donor and recipient on the case is dated from the next year.
In the Colt nomenclature, Army or Navy designation is not a reference to the government but to the standard of the gauge, .36 for the Navy. A similar cased 1861 Navy pair offered in 1863 by a cotton trading company to Major General McPherson was sold for $ 425K including premium by Bonhams on November 10, 2014.
Please watch the video shared by RIA.
SOLD for $ 360K before fees