When the Colt revolver was patented but took a while to catch on.
The celebrated six-shooter of the American West was named after its inventor, Samuel Colt (1814 - 1862). Although he did not invent the revolver, he perfected the design which he first patented in 1835 in England and then the United States in the following year.
Colt had hoped to mass-produce this weapon, but failed to get enough backing to acquire the necessary machinery. Consequently, the guns, made by hand, were expensive and attracted only limited orders. In 1847, the Texas Rangers ordered one thousand Colt pistols enabling Colt to finally set up assembly line manufacture in a plant in Hartford, Connecticut.