SOLD FOR: $2725
Serial Number: 34744
Year of Manufacture: 1913 (https://colt.com/serial-lookup), shipped June 11 to Rock Island Arsenal
Caliber: .45 ACP
Action Type: Single Action Semi-Auto with Removable Magazine
Markings: The left side of the dust cover is marked “UNITED STATES PROPERTY”, the right of the frame is marked “No 34744″. The right side of the slide is marked “MODEL OF 1911. U. S. ARMY”. The left side of the slide is marked “PATENTED APR.20.1897 / SEPT.9.1902. DEC.19.1905. FEB.14.1911”, “COLT’S PT. F.A. MFG. CO. / HARTFORD, CT. U.S.A.” and behind the serrations with a rampant colt. The rear of the slide is marked “H” (vertical, no serif) above the firing pin plate. The left side of the frame is marked behind the trigger with a “WGP” in circle (Walter G. Penfield Maj.). The top of the frame is marked “H” and “V” at the disconnector. The barrel is marked “5” on the bottom in front of the link lugs, the top of the chamber hood is “P” and “H”.
Barrel Length: 5”
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a round blade fixed to the front of the slide. The rear sight is a round-top “U”-notch sight dovetailed to the rear of the barrel.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece checkered walnut with smooth diamonds around the grip screws. The grips have minor handling wear with a few light nicks and scratches. There is dark discoloration around the screw heads on the right panel. The checkering is well defined. There are no chips or cracks. Overall, the grips are in about Fine condition.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Professionally Restored
Bore Condition: The bore is mostly bright with sharp rifling. There is infrequent mino erosion in the bore, mostly toward the muzzle-end. In this writer’s opinion, the bore rates 8 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.
Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 94% of its current metal finish. The finish is thinning at some edges. There is light handling wear in the grip areas. There are some scattered tiny nicks and scratches with one more notable, but still light scratch on the right of the slide below the ejection port. There is a spot of wear at the left-front of the slide. The action shows operational wear, most notable on the barrel. The screw heads range from sharp to lightly tool marked with strong slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this pistol is in Fine condition as refinished.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. It has both a manual and grip safety and the trigger pull is crisp. The slide has nominal play to the frame. 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 single 7-round magazine with a lanyard loop floorplate, the top portion finished in the white, and the body comes down flush with the bottom edge of the floorplate.
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. The design was the end-result of a series of developments by famous gun designer John Browning, starting with the Model 1900. The advances made by Browning were revolutionary at the time, and were so successful that they are considered commonplace today. Browning not only developed first a pivoting and then a tilting barrel to allow for a locked system, he developed the concept of “the slide”, which is now synonymous with semi-automatic handguns.
This is an early example of a 1911, made in 1913 before the outbreak of the Great War. The pistol was originally shipped to the Rock Island Arsenal in Illinois. The pistol has been quite expertly refinished, so it looks great for its age, retaining strong markings. Early features of this pistol include the four-date patent marking on its slide, round-top rear sight and sort-spur hammer. Despite its age, the pistol still retains a good bore and strong mechanics. This early 1911 will be a nice addition to any collection and will display well with its quality restoration. Please see our photos and good luck!
Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California -Bud