Some of the most beautiful work of this craftsman, and many others, are in this book “Liège Gunmakers through their Work. 1800 - 1950”.

For more detail see: LIEGE GUNMAKERS

Venien Benoît-Michel

Here is a Liège-made percussion pistol with front lock and octagonal barrel but bearing on its lock the name of Venien, a master armourer of the 8e Régiment de Cuirassiers (French). The butt is of the Renaissance type. There was an important but old repair to the wood under the barrel. The rod is almost certainly of the French regulatory model 1822 T Bis.

The trigger guard is finger-resting.

According to the genealogy found by a member of the team with a particularly well-developed and educated truffle (

, it is Benoît-Michel Venien, born on February 14, 1821 in Poitiers and accidentally died in service on February 10, 1865 while serving with the 8th Cuirassiers Regiment, barracks at the time in Sarreguemines. Four years earlier, he had received the Military Medal.

You can learn more about the 8th Cuirassiers (originally dating back to 1665) by visiting the following link :égiment_de_cuirassiers.

The markings

ELG on star in oval: accepted between 1818 and 1893

EL: provisional proof from 1852 to the present

Three times the number 3117: probably the manufacturing number

C crowned: countermark of a controller between 1853 and 1877.

One wonders, of course, what is the history of this gun and the reason for the signature of the master gunmaker on the plate of this “civil” pistol. The type of lock (front) is curious to say the least because it is late for a weapon after 1853, whereas the rear locks were introduced twenty years earlier, around 1833.

If it had been a “gift” weapon to, for example, a rank leaving the regiment (transfer or pension), his name would have appeared on the barrel. The rod of an 1822 T Bis is certainly anachronistic (unless it is not the original rod of the weapon).

In conclusion, we have already come a long way in finding the master gunmaker Benoît-Michel Venien, but we don’t have all the answers yet.

There is no doubt that his descendant, who took the trouble to put his family’s genealogy on the web, would be pleased to know that a gun bearing his ancestor’s name still exists. But it is not up to us to inform him.

GP with much appreciated help from PHL and HPH

History (dates) of the 8th Regiment

1815: dissolved

1826: renamed 8th cuirassier regiment

1916: renamed 8th regiment of "cuirassiers à pied"

1919: dissolved

Benoît Michel VENIEN

Né le 14 avril 1821 - Poitiers, 86194

Décédé le 10 février 1865 - Sarreguemines, 57631, à l'âge de 43 ans



Jean VENIEN 1786-1837 (Tonnelier (homme de confiance))

Françoise HIVERT  1793-1842

Union(s) et enfant(s)

Marié le 28 juin 1847, Chatellerault, 86066, avec Madelaine BOUCHER 1828- dont

H Théophile Emmanuel VENIEN 1848-1913

H Maurice VENIEN 1854-

Frères et sœurs

F Jeanne Disiolle VENIEN 1814-1814

H Pierre Théophile VENIEN 1816-1885

F Marie Françoise Désirée VENIEN 1825-1893


Notes individuelles

maître armurier au 8ème régiment de cuirassiers en garnison à Sarreguemine (Moselle), décoré de la médaille militaire (décret du 30/04/1861)

chef armurier — arquebusier


habite Chatellerault en 1844


décédé accidentellement en service

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