Colt Firearms Collection

The Elizabeth Hart Jarvis Colt Collection came to the Wadsworth Atheneum upon the death of Mrs. Colt in 1905.  A time capsule of Victorian Hartford, the collection includes American and European paintings and sculpture, the furnishings and contents of Armsmear—the mansion house built by Samuel Colt in 1857—and Colt’s personal collection of firearms, edged weapons and armor from around the world.  The latter gathering not only includes prototype weapons from Colt’s firearm company, but also rare and historic pieces given as gifts to Colonel Colt by czars, princes and sultans.  Highlights include the wooden model carved by Colt aboard ship in his youth that led him to the design of the perfect revolver, Moorish swords, Italian armor, and scarce examples of Colt’s own products, such as the Walker-Texas holster pistol—perhaps the most storied of all handguns on the Western Frontier.

Selected objects from this collection are on view in the American Decorative Arts Collection.


From Our Collection

1893, Vuillard 1910, Renoir 1817, Unknown Feeley, 1962

Upcoming Events

Aug
22
Fri
1:00 pm Tour: Highlights
Tour: Highlights
Aug 22 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Tour: Highlights: Join a docent for an exploration of the collection. Meet by The Museum Shop. Highlights Tours are offered daily at 1 pm, Wednesday [...]
5:30 pm Movies & Music: Desire
Movies & Music: Desire
Aug 22 @ 5:30 pm – 9:45 pm
Movies & Music: Desire
Movies & Music: Desire: An automotive engineer bound for a holiday in Spain meets a sultry jewel thief. 1936. USA. 95 min. Not Rated. B&W. [...]
Aug
23
Sat
1:00 pm Tour: Highlights
Tour: Highlights
Aug 23 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Tour: Highlights: Join a docent for an exploration of the collection. Meet by The Museum Shop. Highlights Tours are offered daily at 1 pm, Wednesday [...]
2:30 pm Tour: Portraiture in the Collection
Tour: Portraiture in the Collection
Aug 23 @ 2:30 pm – 3:30 pm
Tour: Portraiture in the Collection: Free with admission, meet outside the Museum Shop.
7:00 pm Film: The Great Passage
Film: The Great Passage
Aug 23 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Film: The Great Passage
Film: The Great Passage: An introverted and unsuccessful salesman is asked to finish a new modern dictionary. After humbly accepting the daunting job, he dedicates [...]

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Hours & Admission

Hours:
Wednesday – Friday: 11 am – 5 pm
Saturday & Sunday: 10 am – 5 pm
First Thursdays: 11 am – 8 pm

Admission:
Members: Free
Adults: $10
Seniors (age 62+): $8
Students (age 13 & over or with college ID): $5
Children (age 12 & under): Free
First Thursdays (from 5-8 pm): $5