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The Vidier revolver

In the 1880s several gunsmiths tried to improve the extraction system of French service revolvers. The most well- known is the one from De l’Espée Aumont. But it’s not the only one. A young Parisian gunsmith was also very interested in it.

Vidier, gunsmith in Paris

Born in Paris in the 7th arrondissement on May 21st, 1857, Henri Marius Vidier is the son of Aloys Célestin Vidier and Virginie Constance Painparre.

He married Madeleine Rapaud in Paris in 1895. Two children were born of this union: Georges André Henri Vidier and Marcel Léonard Vidier.

Reserve Second Lieutenant in the 29thrégiment d’infanterie territoriale” then Lieutenant in 1886 and Captain five years later, Henri Vidier, gunsmith by profession, was a talented shooter. He continued to succeed on all shooting ranges. In 1886 he won a first price in a rifle shooting competition and a vase of Sèvre offered by the President of the French Republic as well as a first price in a service revolver competition. In October 1887, while shooting with the service revolver at 15 meters in a competition, he ranked first and won a vermeil medal… On December 1st, 1891, he was still present and won a silver medal in the revolver category.

A real competitor and passionate about his profession, he actively supported the development of sport shooting and contributed to its height by offering weapons as shooting prices.

On January 27th, 1886, he filed a patent, No. 173806, for an extractor for fixed-barrel revolvers. This patent would be the subject of a certificate of addition filed on May 21st of the same year.

He adapted his system to service revolvers and sold “revolvers d’ordonnance perfectionnés” (“enhanced service revolvers”) from his patents in his establishment on the Chaillot Street.

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    Jean-Pierre Bastié

    Born in 1957, Jean-Pierre Bastié got his first weapon at the age of 12. It was a Diana air rifle with which he fired his first rounds. Since then his interest in guns has not dwindled. He was a hunter, a shooter, a competitor with ancient weapons and then a collector before he founded the Académie des Armes Anciennes (Antique Weapons Academy in France) in 1987.
    For more than thirty years, he has been collaborating with the editors of various French and foreign magazines specializing in weapons. A tireless researcher, he has been scouring the archives (like those of Châtellerault, visible on his profile picture) for ages in search of unpublished sources.

    Jean-Pierre Bastié is also President of the "Union Française des amateurs d'Armes" (UFA) and Expert for the French Department of Justice about antique weapons.



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