Dillinger Derringer Sold for $95,600 in Dallas Auction

The small pistol gangster John Dillinger was carrying hidden in a sock when he was arrested in Tucson, Arizona 75 years ago — six months before he was fatally gunned down in Chicago — was sold for $95,600 in a public auction in Dallas, Texas Saturday. The winning bid was more than double the pre-auction estimate.

derringer“It’s a Remington .41 caliber Double Derringer that was confiscated from Dillinger when he and members of his gang were taken into custody in Tucson in January 1934,” said Dennis Lowe, Director of Militaria at Heritage Auction Galleries in Dallas (www.HA.com).

The pistol was expected to sell for $35,000 to $45,000 in the auction conducted by Heritage in Dallas and online on July 25.

“The winning bidder is a Los Angeles area collector,” said Lowe. “The consignor is a member of a prominent Tucson family who also wants to remain anonymous. He owned this historic gun for 50 years but sold it because of his declining health.”

Lowe said according to affidavits, the Derringer was found hidden in one of Dillinger’s socks when he was arrested on January 25, 1934, and Tucson Sheriff, John Belton, gave it to Deputy Probation Officer, Evelyn B. Jenney. Jenney’s son, William LeBaron Jenney III, sold it to the current owner in 1959, and it has remained in his possession for a half century.

“The consignor proudly showed it to family members and close friends over the years, but never publicly displayed it,” said Lowe.

Five weeks after his arrest and brief detention in Tucson, Dillinger escaped from jail in Crown Point, Indiana. He was fatally shot by FBI agents in Chicago on July 22, 1934.

For additional information, contact Heritage Auction Galleries at (800) 872-6467 or online at www.HA.com.