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I recently bought 5 pistols out of an estate. I noticed that a box for one of the revolvers was wrapped in brown paper, and then had most of the pertinent info written on the paper wrapping, like Model #, Caliber, Barrel Length, Stock, Features, etc. I found out from the widow who is selling this collection that whenever her husband bought a pistol, and he felt that the box was really in good condition, this is what he would do.
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So now I'm left wondering; Do I leave it as is because it sort of adds to the provenance of the pistol, and it represents a connection to him? Or would I be better off carefully removing the wrapping and keeping it with the box?

I would love to hear what others think. My wife said "You are about two steps away from eccentric by leaving on that wrapping"... She may be right. But she also is the collector of nothing, and kind of doesn't get it. Thanks for weighing on this in advance.
 

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I'd leave it on there, as there is nothing like personal character to spice up an item. You know what's under it...just another box...;)

(I honestly don't understand the whole sacred box thing anyways.Yes it's sorta cool to have the O-riginal box etx. but it's like one of my friends who took the original tires off his Corvette and has them enshrined in his garage. In the end..they are just tires...)
 

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I recently bought 5 pistols out of an estate. I noticed that a box for one of the revolvers was wrapped in brown paper, and then had most of the pertinent info written on the paper wrapping, like Model #, Caliber, Barrel Length, Stock, Features, etc. I found out from the widow who is selling this collection that whenever her husband bought a pistol, and he felt that the box was really in good condition, this is what he would do.
View attachment 443255
So now I'm left wondering; Do I leave it as is because it sort of adds to the provenance of the pistol, and it represents a connection to him? Or would I be better off carefully removing the wrapping and keeping it with the box?

I would love to hear what others think. My wife said "You are about two steps away from eccentric by leaving on that wrapping"... She may be right. But she also is the collector of nothing, and kind of doesn't get it. Thanks for weighing on this in advance.
+1


 

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If you shake the box, does it rattle? Is the original paperwork, and possibly the original sight alignment tool still in the box?
If they are there, they will increase the value of the pistol, especially because they may be in their original pristine condition.
Some SAT's are very valuable, and quite rare. If the box remains unopened, and rattles, I'd open the wrapping up and see what's in there.

Regards,
Gregory
 

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Assuming the box matches the pistol, his wrapping is keeping it pristine - something a collector would appreciate. Problem is if the box is actually mismatched.

As mentioned above, the paperwork and other enclosed tools would have value for a collector.

How is the paper attached? If we're talking cellophane tape (Scotch tape) it will deteriorate and yellow over time. I'm not sure a private purchaser's notes add to the provenance of the piece unless it's someone who is well known.

With the understanding that I would be carefully preserving things, I think I'd unwrap them to verify they were matching.

Marc
 

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I save boxes, much to Amy's disdain. I have a room upstairs loaded with them and Amy wants to burn them all.
 
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My Granny did that but wrapped the top and bottom separately so you could open it. It protected the box (for a while) but was still usable. She did that with the box for her Colt Model 1908 but eventually the glue gave out and the box came apart anyway.
 
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Unless the individuals handwriting sample is something of value I would carefully remove the wrapping inspect the box, make sure everything matches up and then if I were concerned with the longevity of the box I would re wrap it making sure NOT to use adhesives to do it. Inks and such can leach through paper wraps and writing on the wrapping after it has been applied can leave indentations in the box underneath so if you are going to make notes make them on another piece of paper and afix it to the wrapping.
 

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Unless the individuals handwriting sample is something of value I would carefully remove the wrapping inspect the box, make sure everything matches up and then if I were concerned with the longevity of the box I would re wrap it making sure NOT to use adhesives to do it. Inks and such can leach through paper wraps and writing on the wrapping after it has been applied can leave indentations in the box underneath so if you are going to make notes make them on another piece of paper and afix it to the wrapping.
That was the problem with Granny’s box. A lot of old glues were made from horses and such, great bug food or they break down after a few decades. The wrapping may provide protection but only for so long.
 
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Discussion Starter #11
I like where your head is here...

I'd leave it on there, as there is nothing like personal character to spice up an item. You know what's under it...just another box...;)

(I honestly don't understand the whole sacred box thing anyways.Yes it's sorta cool to have the O-riginal box etx. but it's like one of my friends who took the original tires off his Corvette and has them enshrined in his garage. In the end..they are just tires...)
Thanks for your thoughts. Mostly I hang on to the boxes - especially older guns - because it typically enhances the value. Also, the box information makes it much easier to research the firearm, and appraise value. Takes a lot of guess work out of the process.

All that said - I did go ahead and take the paper off. It is in pristine condition, and includes everything that came with the revolver initially. It did help me determine that it was made in 1984. I'll post more pics soon.
 

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Great advice. Thanks to your post and others, I did go ahead and remove the paper, saving it just as it was received. The box is pristine, and it has everything in it that originally came with the revolver. I appreciate your input.
 

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Thank you! I did carefully remove the paper - in fact, it's still in the shape of the box. :) As you may have already read in my previous replies, the boxx is in great condition, and the contents are all there. THey look untouched.
 
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