Charles Daly was a businessman, not a gunmaker. Born in 1839, he partnered with August Shoverling around 1875 to import shotguns into the United States. These side-by-sides were marketed under Charles Daly’s name, and up to about WW2, they were some of the finest double-barrel shotguns for sale in the US.
This little 24 gauge at Julia’s March 2012 auctions shows just how nice a Charles Daly can be. This is a Diamond Regent, and while this was the highest grade gun Charles Daly offered, some Diamond Regents were fancier than others, like this 16 gauge from the NRA’s Robert Peterson collection.
As for the gauge – 24 – I’ve seen a handful of shotguns made for it. All these guns have been european, and I think most of them were Italian. I’ve heard that 24 gauges are popular in South America for doves and in Europe for smaller upland game. If you buy this Daly, this Fiocchi 24 gauge ammo is out there and available.
Prussian-made Charles Daly side-by-side shotguns were very expensive back in their day. Schoverling, Daly & Gales listed the Diamond Regent for $500 in their 1907 catalog. Parker was asking the same price for their just introduced A-1 Special.
Today, Parker A-1 Specials brings much more on the collector’s market. But I don’t think they’re better shotgun. Dalys have always been fantastic doubles, and many people think they’re among the finest boxlocks ever made. I agree with them.
Here’s the complete listing of this gun from Julia’s website:
Lot #1190A: RARE AND DAINTY CHAS DALY REGENT DIAMOND 24 GA SHOTGUN.
SN 1736. Cal. 24 Ga. Wonderful, Prussian, Linder made Daly with factory 24” bbls, 2-3/4″ chambers with tapered, concave, matted ribs and sgl metal bead.“CHARLES DALY REGENT DIAMOND QUALITY” is inlaid in gold with scroll engraving extending about 6-1/2” up the rib. It has a rib extension with dbl bites, selective ejectors & checkered dbl triggers. Dovetail bbls are made of Excelsior steel by Witten and bear the maker’s brand along with the crossed pistols and “HAL” markings indicative of Linder made guns.
Scalloped receiver is stamped “PRUSSIA” on the water table is wonderfully engraved with full coverage flowing deep-relief scrollwork having a small oval vignette of four partridge on left side, two pheasant on right side, the indicative large gold crown is on bottom with two intricate snipe in an oval on trigger bow. Fences are deep relief engraved in flowing acanthus patterns with sculpted rib across radius with side clips.
Receiver also has cocking indicators & maker’s name along the base of the bbl bosses with “SAFE” in gold on top tang. Mounted with superb,honey & chocolate Circassian walnut with ebony tipped Prince of Wales grip with checkered side panels and drop points. Bottom of stock has a small gold oval engraved “H.M.A.”. Matching splinter forend has ebony tip with appended metal engraved to match gun.
Bore diameter: left -.587, right -.589. Bore restrictions: left -.020, right -.003 Wall thickness: left -.025, right -.023. Drop at heel: 2-7/8″, drop at comb: 1-3/4″. Weight: 4lbs. 12oz, LOP 13 3/4” over a 1/2″ well-matched stock extension and solid red pad. PROVENANCE: Ex- William Keith Neal Collection (Consignor’s grandfather and noted British antique arms collector).
CONDITION: Very good plus. Bbls retain most of their orig finish with areas of light to moderate pitting towards the muzzles and one or two light handling marks. Action retains most of its vibrant case colors underneath sharp engraving. Wood is sound and retains about all of its orig hand rubbed finish with scattered light dents & dings from normal handling. Recoil pad is slightly flattened and separating from its base at toe. Bore is bright and shiny. Mechanics are crisp, ejectors in time. A diminutive and rare beauty! Schoverling ,Daly & Gales offered this grade(No. 500)at $500 in their 1907 catalog. 4-45629 JWD24 (15,000-20,000)