Previous manufacturers and trademarks manufactured circa 1888-1931 in Norwich, CT.
In 1888, George W. Cilley bought out the defunct Bacon Arms Co. of Norwich, CT. He then formed an alliance with Frank Foster, and borrowed enough money to form the Crescent Fire Arms Company. Cilley and Foster each held several firearms patents, and both were highly qualified in firearms design and manufacture. Production began with single shot tip-up shotguns, which had an external side hammer. Double barrel shotgun production was started in 1891. In 1893, they began making bicycle chains, and that same year, H&D Folsom took over the company's financial control. Early in the 1890s, Crescent built a rifle that resembled the Remington No. 4. A very rare Crescent was the .410 bore shotgun pistol, which was introduced in the 1920s. In 1929, N.R. Davis Firearms Co., then owned by Warner Arms Corp., merged with Cresent to become Crescent-Davis Arms Corp. Because of financial crisis, business continued to decline, and they were forced to sell out. Savage Arms Co. acquired Cresent-Davis in 1931, assembled guns from the remaining parts, and these guns were sold under the Crescent name only. In 1932, the city of Norwich, CT, took over the Crescent property for non-payment of back taxes. After the Norwich facility was closed, manufacture was moved to Chicopee Falls.
It is unknown whether or not Crescent did any high grade or custom work. However, a very well engraved SxS, with the Crescent logo, is known to exist in a private collection.
Crescent Fire Arms Company remains best known as a manufacturer of "house brand" shotguns (i.e., Crescent private labeled guns for retailers, distributors, mail-order houses, etc.). Over 100 different trademarks have been observed to date, manufactured by Crescent. Almost all the remaining specimens today are priced as shooters and have no collector value.


12, 16, 20, 28 ga., or .410 bore, exposed hammer, various barrel lengths, walnut stock and forearm. Disc.
values below assume standard models with double triggers, extractors, original finish, and 100% working order. Most shotguns feature sidelock actions. Shotguns with exposed hammers can equal their hammerless counterparts if condition is 80% or better.
20 ga., 14 in. nickel-plated barrels, case hardened receiver, pistol grip. Mfg. circa 1900s.
.410 bore, 12 in. single barrel, total production unknown, possibly prototype for Crescent Certified Shotgun.
hammerless .410 bore or 20 ga., 12 1/4 in. barrels, extremely rare firearm whose total production and years of manufacture are unknown at this time (only known documentation is an "Auto Burglar Gun" in an advertisement by "Saul Ruben, The Gun Store, 68 E. Long St., Columbus, OH" of the October 1932 issue of Hunter-Trader-Trapper, which lists a $14.75 retail price). The receiver is marked "New Empire". At this time, 5 specimens are known in .410 bore, with ser. nos. scattered throughout the S-1 to S-19 range. The ser. no. appears on the metal under the forearm. The Crescent Auto & Burglar Gun may have been distributed by the H.& D. Folsom Arms Co. of New York City through its manufacturing division, the Crescent Firearms Co., Norwich, CT. Crescent's sellers included the Belknap Hardware Co., Louisville, KY and Hibbard-Spencer-Bartlett Co., Chicago, IL.
.410 bore, 12 1/2 in. barrel, approx. 4,000 mfg. from approx. 1930-32 by the Crescent-Davis Arms Corp., and possibly thereafter until 1934 by the J. Stevens Arms Co., left receiver side is stamped "Crescent Certified Shotgun/Crescent-Davis Arms Corp./Norwich, Conn. U.S.A." Also termed the "Ever-Ready" Model 200 and advertised with a blue frame, but specimens with "tiger stripe" and regular case coloring have been observed.