Christie's expecting six-figure bid for Al Capone's revolver
The auction for gangster Al Capone's six-shot revolver is expected to draw bids in the neighborhood of $100,000.
June 21st, 2011
02:53 PM ET

Christie's expecting six-figure bid for Al Capone's revolver

Eliot Ness would probably be a little annoyed to see his nemesis's revolver drawing six-figure bids.

The Prohibition agent of "Untouchables" fame spent about two years trying to nail Al Capone and his murderous cabal, only to see the Chicago gangster dodge charges of smuggling, bootlegging, prostitution or, if we're pointing fingers in the 1929 St. Valentine's Day Massacre (we aren't), much worse.

Capone eventually went down on tax evasion charges stemming from a separate investigation. The seven years and change that the mobster spent in prison ultimately were his undoing; he died about seven years after his 1939 release.

Now, more than six decades following Capone's death, one of his belongings is drawing the cult fascination that so often accompanies the appurtenances of gangsters, psychos and other monumental miscreants.

Christie's, the world-famous auction house, is selling Capone's .38 special, a "police-positive" Colt nickel-plated, six-shot double-action revolver. It also has a handsome checkered walnut grip.

Christie's expects the winning bidder to cough up between $80,600 and $112,840. Hardly an offer you can't refuse. A similar firearm sans the Scarface pedigree would run you a few hundred dollars.

Scarface, at his 1931 tax evasion trial.

In a world where U.S. marshals snap up a quarter-mil selling the Unabomber's stuff and where Charles Manson's artwork and serial killer John Wayne Gacy's clown paintings pull mad scratch, is anyone surprised? and are viable business opportunities, after all.

The auction listing for the Brooklyn-born mob boss's pistol says that Madeleine Capone Morichetti, wife of Capone's brother, Ralph, explained in a 1976 letter to Edmund Koeski that Ralph "Bottles" Capone wanted Koeski to have the gun upon Bottles' death. The letter further described the weapon as "a gun which previously belonged to and was used only Al Capone while he was alive."

Morichetti also stated in a 1990 affidavit, which cites the gun's serial number, that Bottles got the gun from his little brother.

So, it's the genuine article, Christie's is saying.

The auction house opens bidding on the gat Wednesday in London. This would make a fine addition to the decor of any local speakeasy.

Post by:
Filed under: Celebrity • Crime • History • Illinois • U.S. • United Kingdom • World
soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Sammy The Bull

    I know I shoulda got dat gun.

    June 21, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
  2. RLD

    Lol the gun probably has syphilis all over it

    June 21, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  3. donald

    It is stupid to buy a criminal gun ( even it cost 1cent ). With that money we could help others need. Think of it rich people!!!.

    June 21, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ron


      June 21, 2011 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Henry Miller

      Isn't there something about helping those who help themselves? And I'm fairly sure that doesn't mean having the IRS help themselves to a major fraction of my paycheque.

      June 21, 2011 at 4:37 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Joe Moore

    People can buy what they want without some socialist saying they need to give their money up.

    June 21, 2011 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • angie

      It's not about someone telling you what to do with your money. It's about having some common sense and decency.

      June 21, 2011 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Trig

    Is it me or does that seem like a low estimate?

    June 21, 2011 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
  6. BobZemko

    Some rich guy who is barely 5 foot tall with a tiny weenie will buy it.

    June 21, 2011 at 4:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Billy The Kid

      I didn't think you had that much money

      June 21, 2011 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Gunsmith Gus

    I reckon the feller that bought Al's gun is gunna make some scaled-down copies and sell a buttload of necklaces. Worked for the cross.

    June 21, 2011 at 4:33 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Gunsmith Gus

    Maybe he could mount those tiny little guns to little crosses. It could kinda be symbolic of American's giving up their guns for what somebody else did.

    June 21, 2011 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Alex

      the tooth fairy laid his gun down for me?

      June 21, 2011 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  9. bill

    Is this the same gun that was prominently displayed in HBO's "Too Big To Fail" and owned by Henry Paulson?

    June 21, 2011 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
  10. donald

    I know that you can spend your money however you want. Look at Bill Gates and Warrent Buffet they give billion dollars for school, hunger...etc! I think it more meaningfull than spend money for a piece of trash.

    June 21, 2011 at 4:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big Al


      June 21, 2011 at 5:30 pm | Report abuse |
  11. macjones

    Beware. Those who own this gun end badly. It has been passed down through the generations, and what they omit to tell you is it's complete violent history. No less than two people committed suicide with this weapon and it's been used for countless murders. It is cursed by all accounts cursed by the Devil Himself. Bidding starts at $100,000, LOL

    June 21, 2011 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
  12. AntiObama

    This gun is a big part of American History. Theres alot of collecters out there that will want this.

    June 21, 2011 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  13. donald

    For those who earning money in crooked way.

    June 21, 2011 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  14. goinggone

    you can bid on madoffs golf clubs, theres even a web site

    June 21, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big Al

      No thanks.

      June 21, 2011 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
  15. StXavier

    People will buy just about any thing that has a history to it GOOD or BAD attached to it. Just to say I have it??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????
    what does that get you????????????????????????????????????

    June 21, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big Al


      June 21, 2011 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
1 2 3