Immediately following his Presidency, Teddy Roosevelt made plans in early 1909 for a year-long safari in Africa. The trip was partially funded by the Smithsonian as a naturalist expedition. His son Kermit would accompany him. Calling on his great experience as a soldier, statesman, conservationist and hunter, T.R. put great forethought into what would be needed to prevail in his quest. A battery of arms was assembled, 2 of note were a Holland & Holland Royal double rifle in .500/450, and a beautiful Ansley H. Fox F-Grade, Special Gold inlaid, 12 gauge. Although originally ordered by Mr. Roosevelt’s wife as a gift for the expedition, Mr. Fox insisted on presenting this special gun to Mr. Roosevelt at no charge, who later thanked Fox stating “I really think it’s the most beautiful gun I have ever seen, I am exceedingly proud of it.” And later in his book entitled African Game Trails, Roosevelt writes, “I have a Fox number 12 Shotgun; no better gun was ever made.” The Fox Gun Company would capitalize on this ringing endorsement for decades.
Following the President’s death in 1919, the Fox gun remained in the possession of the Roosevelt family for three generations but in October of 2010, the James D. Julia Auction Company, will for the first time in history, offer it for sale at public auction. The Holland & Holland double rifle was sold in the early 90’s for $550,000 and now resides in the famous Frazier Arms Museum in KY. This Fox Shotgun is believed by many in the Sporting Gun fraternity to be far more important and valuable than the H&H and in fact, one of the most valuable shotguns in the world. The October auction at Julia’s will certainly determine this. Julia’s, in recent years, established records for the three most expensive single American Shotguns ever sold at auction and are currently the worlds leading Auctioneers of quality sporting guns. There can be no question that the Roosevelt-Fox Shotgun is the most historic gun in annals of American Shotgun history as well as one of the worlds most historic Shotguns.
This extraordinary auction will also include a fabulous offering of quality arms from various estates and collections, a spectacular array of high-grade sporting shotguns and rifles along with the Roosevelt/Fox gun are included. The collection of the late David Crocker will include some extraordinary Colt’s and outstanding Winchesters. Also included is the stunning lifelong collection of Marlin small bore rifles from the estate of Richard Rohal together with rare Union and Confederate Civil War items, Class 3 items, historic objects and much more.