Sold For; $5,025
Model: Automatic Pistol, Caliber .22 (pre-Woodsman)
Serial Number: 4734
Year of Manufacture: 1918
Caliber: .22 Long Rifle (the checkered backstrap indicates that high velocity ammunition should NOT be used in this pistol)
Action Type: Single Action Semi-Auto with Removable Magazine
Markings: The left side of the slide is marked “COLT AUTOMATIC / CAL. 22 LONG RIFLE” and with a Rampant Colt logo. The top of the barrel is marked “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. CO. HARTFORD, CT U.S.A. / PATENTED DEC 22, 1903”. The left of the trigger guard is marked “1” and with “VP” in a triangle, the right of the trigger guard has eagle’s head over “S5” U.S. Army acceptance mark. The front strap is marked “4734”, the bottom of the slide is marked “8987” (see Our Assessment).
Barrel Length: 6 5/8″
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a blade pinned to a slotted base fixed to the front of the barrel, adjustable for elevation. The rear sight is a “U”-notch dovetailed to the rear of the slide, adjustable for windage. The rear sight leaf has minor play to its base.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece checkered walnut with smooth diamonds around the grip screw escutcheons. The grips have only a few scattered minor marks. The checkering is well defined. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in about Fine condition.
Type of Finish: Blue
Finish Originality: Original to the parts, the slide is not original to the frame (see Our Assessment).
Bore Condition: The bore is mostly bright and the rifling is sharp. There are some scattered spots of erosion in the bore.
Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 75% of its metal finish. The finish is thinning at all edges. The most notable finish wear is in the grip straps with some scattered along the sides of the barrel and other scattered minor wear. There are several scattered light scuffs and scratches with infrequent minor surface oxidation. The screw head is tool marked with a strong slot. The markings are clear. Overall, this pistol is in about Good-Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The slide is not designed to lock back on an empty magazine but the safety can be used to hold the slide open for cleaning. We did not fire this pistol. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: This pistol comes with a Colt Letter detailing the shipping date, configuration and destination of the pistol and one 10 round magazine with bronze follower and the top portion in the white. The magazine has scattered minor surface oxidation, operational wear, intact feed lips, and a strong spring in about Very Good condition. The letter lists the pistol as being shipped July 27, 1918 to The United States Government Small Arms School, Camp Perry, Ohio as one of 100 guns in the shipment, the letter is in Excellent condition.
Our Assessment: John M. Browning designed “Colt’s Automatic Pistol, Caliber .22”, later to become the Woodsman, with the design refined slightly by Colt employees George Tansley and F.C. Chadwick before it was released in 1915. The Woodsman stayed in production until 1977. This pistol is one of 100 which was purchased by the U.S. Army toward the end of WWI, shipped to Camp Perry in July of 1918. While the slide’s serial number doesn’t match the frame’s, it is in the serial range of the Camp Perry shipment (4668-9734), so it is possible it was swapped out from another of the Camp Perry shipment. The pistol retains about 75% of its metal finish, a decent bore and strong mechanics. Pre-Woodsman pistols are collectible in their own right, but one of only 100 shipped to the Army is going to take a prized place in even the most advanced Colt collections. Please see our photos and good luck!
CA Legal or CA Private Party Transferable (THIS SECTION DOES NOT APPLY TO OUT-OF-STATE RESIDENTS): This C&R Pistol CAN be sold as a dealer sale in California and CAN be transferred as a Private Party Transfer (PPT) as our Simi Valley location. All C&R firearms must be transferred through your local dealer OR at our Simi Valley location; we cannot ship directly to a C&R holder in California. Out of state residents can disregard this section – your local laws apply.