Dragoon revolvers evolved as improvements on the Colt Walker. Eli Whitney manufactured the first run of 1848 Dragoons for Samuel Colt. The Dragoon revolvers weighed less and had shorter cylinders and improved loading levers.
The gunmakers continued to make small improvements that set each Dragoon model apart. On the first model, some improvements to the backstrap and grips were incorporated. Then, a further improvement was made by changing the cylinder stops and pins from oval to square. This improvement was then called the second model. A final change was made some years later by rounding the trigger guard which led to this revolver being designated the third model Dragoon.