SOLD FOR: $2725
Make: Smith & Wesson
Model: U.S.M.C. The .38 Military & Police, Pre-Model 10
Serial Number: C234378
Year of Manufacture: 1953 (Smith & Wesson Letter)
Caliber: .38 Special
Action Type: 6-Shot, Double / Single Action, Swing-Out Fluted Cylinder Hand Ejector Revolver.
Markings: The left side of the frame is marked “USMC PROPERTY” and the backstrap is hand inscribed “U.S. PROPERTY”. The left side of the barrel is marked “SMITH & WESSON”, the right side is marked “38 S.&W. SPECIAL CTG.”. The sideplate has the S&W monogram logo, the right side of the frame is marked with the four-line marcas registradas address. The butt, barrel flat, rear face of the cylinder, front of the ejector (no letter prefix), and rear of the yoke (no letter prefix) are marked with the serial number. The sides of the grip frame, yoke, and yoke cut are marked with inspection marks. The interior of the right grip panel is stamped “170 / 703”.
Barrel Length: 4”, Pinned
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a half-round blade, it is integral to a base that is forged with the barrel. The rear sight is a square notch, sitting before a “U” channel on the top strap of the frame.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece checkered walnut magna stocks with smooth diamonds around the escuthceons and S&W medallions. There is a tiny loss on the front of the right panel at the corner where the front strap widens into the frame. There are some scattered light compressions and little marks through the finish. There are a few little areas of minor finish wear. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in about Fine condition.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is bright with sharp rifling. There is no erosion.
Overall Condition: This handgun retains about 82% of its metal finish. There are some scattered nicks and dings into the metal, some go through the finish and others do not. There are scattered scuffs and scratches. There are areas that have taken on a slightly plumish hue, most noticeable on the cylinder. There are areas of patina, most noticeable on the grip frame. There are some areas of finish loss, some of the most noticeable are on the backstrap and cylinder. There are some scattered little spots of surface oxidation. The screw heads are lightly worn. The markings are clear. Overall, this revolver is in about Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The cylinder produces light side to side in full lockup of all 6 chambers. We did not fire this handgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: Included is a storage box, original Smith & Wesson letter, and a copy of the Smith & Wesson letter.
Our Assessment: The Smith & Wesson Model 10 is a revolver of worldwide popularity. In production for decades, some 6,000,000 of the type have been produced over the years, making it the most popular centerfire revolver of the 20th century. This 4″ pre-model 10 is in about Very Good condition with about 82% of its metal finish, a bright bore, and strong mechanics. This is a post-war .38 Military & Police Pre-Model 10 revolver with the improved hammer block and a “C” prefix serial number. It has a pinned 4” barrel, magna stocks, blued finish, and a lanyard loop. After using the M&P as the “Victory” model, in WWII it is no surprise that branches of the armed forces would order more of the proven Smith & Wesson design. Continuing after WWII, regulations prohibited the 1911 and 1911A1 from being carried with a loaded chamber, this made racking the slide a difficult task for aviators as well as K9 handlers so revolvers were the clear choice. The preferred issue of revolvers for aviators lasted quite a while, and Army helicopter pilots even used Victory Models until they replaced them with modern double action 9mm semi-autos, a testament to the S&W design. This M&P .38 comes from the collection of author Kevin Williams, best known for his work on the topic of General Officers Pistols & Clandestine Organization Pistols of WWII. It was shipped to the Marine Crops Supply Annex at Camp Lejune in June of 1953 This one looks like it has seen some duty and will make a great addition to any collection it joins. Please see our photos and good luck!