Statement of Significance (as of designation - November 13, 1966):
The Coltsville Historic District represents the firearms manufacturing facility established by Samuel Colt in 1855, and operated after his death (1862) by his wife and subsequent parties. Building on the fame and success of the Colt revolver during the mid-nineteenth century, the Colt Fire Arms Company continued developing and/or manufacturing important military firearms (including pistols, rifles, and machine guns) through the first half of the twentieth century. While the Colt Company is best known for the production of firearms, it was a key part of the larger story of industrial innovation and development of new consumer products that changed the way of life in the nation. Between wars, the Colt Company manufactured a range of other products, such as a typesetting machine and steam engines.
Armsmear (1855), a large, rambling Italianate house that features a five-story tower, was built by Samuel Colt (1814-1862), the inventor of the Colt pistol and developer of mass production techniques. Colt's pistol became popular during the war with Mexico, when the Federal Government ordered 1,000 of them.