WWI Springfield Armory 1911 U.S. Army .45 ACP Semi-Auto Pistol, 1914 C&R

SOLD FOR: $3534

LSB#: 220209FH034

Make: Springfield Armory

Model: 1911

Serial Number: 79777

Year of Manufacture: 1914

Caliber: .45 ACP

Action Type: Single Action Semi-Auto with Removable Magazine

Markings: The left side of the slide is marked “PATENTED APR.20,1897 / SEPT.9,1902. DEC.19,1905.FEB.14,1911 / COLTS PT. F.A. MFG. CO.”, “SPRINGFIELD ARMORY / U.S.A.” and with a Flaming Bomb proof at the rear. The left of the frame is marked “UNITED STATES PROPERTY” and at the magazine release with a Flaming Bomb proof. The right side of the frame is marked “No 79777”. The right side of the slide is marked with an American Eagle Springfield logo and “MODEL OF 1911. U.S. ARMY.”. The bottom of the slide is marked “J”. The left link lug is marked “P”, the right “S” and the rear of the chamber hood has an incomplete “S” marking (markings are appropriate for a Springfield Armory pistol serial 113,497 to end of production per Clawson). The following parts have a small “S” marked on them: Hammer, Slide Stop, Thumb Safety, Mainspring Housing, Trigger, Magazine Catch, Disconnector. The sear has a small, incomplete marking which may have been an “S”. There are no “S” markings on the barrel bushing, firing pin plate, extractor or grip safety.

Barrel Length: 5”

Sights / Optics: The front sight is a rounded blade integral to the slide. The rear sight is a flat-top “U”-notch dovetailed to the rear of the barrel. Each corner has a 0.06″ radius, typical of Springfield produced rear sights.

Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are checkered walnut “Double Diamond” grips. The left panel has minor handling wear with only a few scattered light marks and well defined checkering. The right panel has a little more notable wear with thinning finish and a couple of notable dings in the top diamond. The right panel’s checkering shows more handling wear, but remains well defined. There are no chips or cracks. Given the disparity between the two panels, it is likely that at least one is a replacement. Overall, the grips are in about Very Good condition.

Type of Finish: Blued

Finish Originality: Refinished

Bore Condition: The lands are mostly bright, the grooves are gray. The rifling is well defined. There is scattered light erosion in the bore, mostly in the grooves.

Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 90% of its current metal finish. The finish is thinning at all edges. Most of the balance is in light finish wear on the right slide flat and on the frame below the flat. There are some scattered light nicks, scuffs and scratches. There is an “idiot mark” on the left of the frame under the slide stop. The action shows operational wear. There are some spots of light erosion under the finish, most are concealed by the grips when they are installed. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. The markings are generally clear, the eagle on the right of the slide is shallow and incomplete. Overall, this pistol is in Very Good condition as refinished.

Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The trigger pull is crisp and the slide has little play to the frame. We have not fired 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 one 7-round magazine. The magazine’s finish is blued at the bottom with the top portion in the white, there is copper plating at the top of the spine and the body of the magazine is folded over on each side across the bottom of the lanyard-loop floorplate. The magazine has scattered wear and light surface oxidation. The feed lips are intact and the spring is strong.

Our Assessment: The 1911 and 1911-A1 pistols served the military of the United States from 1911 to 1985, through two World Wars and the Korean and Vietnam wars. They gained a reputation as a reliable handgun with plenty of stopping power, and are held in high regard by those who have used them. Its design came from John Moses Browning with initial production by Colt. When the pistol was first adopted by the U.S. Army, an agreement was reached that US Arsenals could produce the pistol, but only after orders of at least 50,000 pistols had been received by Colt. The United States immediately ordered 50,000 pistols and set to work on a plan to produce the new model at Springfield Armory. Oddly, Colt actually didn’t have manufacturing drawings, so Springfield had to take 20 Colt production pistols, measure all of their parts, and average the dimensions of the 20 examples to arrive at their nominal dimensions, with the extremes of the measurements used for tolerances. Production would actually begin in 1914, but with the US entry into WWI becoming imminent, production ceased in 1917 in order to focus on rifle production. A total of 25,767 Model 1911 pistols were made by Springfield and they had some interesting features to differentiate them from Colt’s production. The front sights were integral to the slide, rather than a separate part staked in place, the rear sights had a slightly different radius at their corners, and the markings were of course different. This is a Springfield Armory Model 1911 pistol made in 1914, likely after the start of WWI, but before the US had joined in. Several small parts and the barrel have Springfield markings, though a few of the small parts have been replaced. The pistol is in Very Good condition as refinished, showing wear consistent with issue and service use. The Springfield made 1911s are always collectible, and this would be a great addition to a collection. Please see our photos and good luck!

WWI Springfield Armory 1911 U.S. Army .45 ACP Semi-Auto Pistol, 1914 C&R
WWI Springfield Armory 1911 U.S. Army .45 ACP Semi-Auto Pistol, 1914 C&R