SOLD FOR: $3076
Serial Number: 740491
Year of Manufacture: 1941 (https://www.colt.com/serial-lookup)
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. AUG.19,1913”, rampant colt, and “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. CO. / HARTFORD, CT. U.S.A.”, the top of the slide is marked “P”, the rear face of the slide is marked “740 / 491” under the firing pin plate. The left of the frame below the magazine release is marked with a “P” acceptance proof, the left side of the frame below the slide stop is marked with “R.S.” in box. The right side of the frame is marked “UNITED STATES PROPERTY / No 740491” and “M1911 A1 U.S. ARMY”. The left of the trigger guard is marked “VP” in triangle and “T”, the right is marked “73”. The top of the frame is marked “G” and “R.S.” in box at the disconnector. The left link-lug of the barrel is marked “P”, the bottom of the barrel is marked “G” and the left above the lug is marked “COLT 45 AUTO”. The magazine floorplate is marked “S” on the top and “C-S” on the bottom.
Barrel Length: 5”
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a short, round blade fixed to the slide. The rear sight is a “U”-notch dovetailed into the slide.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece checkered brown “Coltwood” plastic with reinforcement rings around the grip screws but without reinforcement ribs on the interior. The interior of the grips have mold-number markings. The grips have minor handling wear with a few scattered minor marks, some spots of white and red paint, and minor tool marks in the reinforcement rings. The right panel has a crack at the front edge which extends back to approximately the center of the panel. On the interior, there are other cracks spreading out from this point in the recess, but they are not visible on the exterior of the grip. The checkering is well defined. There are no chips. Overall, the grips are in Good-plus condition.
Type of Finish: Parkerized
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is gray with sharp rifling. There is scattered light erosion in the bore, more notable in the grooves. In this writer’s opinion, this bore rates a 7 out of 10.
Many military and C&R eligible weapons have bores that will show erosion. This is not only due to age but to the fact that corrosive primers were commonly used in ammunition worldwide. For example, the U.S. used corrosive ammunition throughout WWII. The U.S. military did not begin to phase out corrosive-primed ammunition until the 1950’s.
Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 85% of its metal finish. The finish is generally strong with the balance mostly in handling wear in the grip areas and edge-thinning. There is some scattered minor surface oxidation, mostly in the grip areas and in portions of the frame which are covered by the grips when installed. There are a few light nicks and scratches including under the slide stop on the left of the frame. The action shows operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this pistol is in Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The trigger pull is crisp. There is minor play between the slide and frame. This pistol has manual and grip safeties. 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 a single 7-round magazine. The magazine shows operational wear, scattered minor surface oxidation, intact feed lips and a strong spring.
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. Since their introduction, the 1911 has seen a number of design changes, most minor, but the 1911-A1 introduced the arched mainspring housing, shorter trigger, and relief cuts behind the trigger on the frame. In addition to these inter-war changes, Colt began finishing the guns by parkerizing them, a more durable finish than the original bluing.
This example was produced by Colt in 1941, as the “Arsenal of Democracy” was gearing up, but before the United States had officially entered the war. It is a nice example of a 1941 as well, with proper grips, sights, original finish and even a serial-matching slide. The pistol is in Very Good condition, retaining about 85% of its metal finish, a very shootable bore and strong mechanics. It will make a good addition to a Colt or WWII small arms collection, especially for those who want a representative example of each iteration of the design. Of course, it could still prove to be a nice shooter, too. Please see our photos and good luck!
Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California. -Bud