Model: 1896 Broomhandle Mauser Military Red 9
Serial Number: 56891
Year of Manufacture: 1916-1918 (www.oldguns.net)
Caliber: 9mm Parabellum
Action Type: Single Action Semi –Auto with Internal Magazine
Markings: The top of the barrel chamber is marked “WAFFENFABRIK / MAUSER / OBERNDORF A/N”, the left side is marked with a double crowned “U” definitive proof and the left shoulder with “56891”. The right side of the barrel chamber is marked “Crown / Script I” (WWI Army Acceptance Stamp). The top rear of the bolt is marked “6891” and with a double crowned “U” and the top of the bolt stop is also marked “6891”. The back of the hammer is marked “891” and “NS” and the back of the lock frame and frame are marked “56891”. The right side of the frame is marked “WAFFENFABRIK MAUSER / OBERNDORF A. NECKAR”. The flat on the underside of the barrel is marked “8”, “7”, “S”, “A”, “1” and with a “Crown / K”. The barrel in front of the flat is marked “W” and with a 6 pointed star. The insides of the grip panels are marked “56891”.
Barrel Length: 5 9/16”
Sights / Optics: The pistol is mounted with a “V” notch rear sliding elevator (tangent) sight with markings from “50-500” that is pinned to the barrel extension. The front sight is a fixed inverted “V” blade fixed to the band at the front of the barrel.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are walnut grips with 27 grooves, counting the narrow groove at the top and bottom, and a large “9“ cut into each grip and filled with red. The smooth areas of the grips show several handling marks with compression marks in the bottoms of the grips from the lanyard ring. The grooves on the front edge of the right grip near the bottom and on the front edge of the left grip near the center have been flattened from shallow compression marks. The grips are slightly proud of the metal at the bottom of the butt and don’t quite match the contour of the backstrap as it narrows down at the bottom of the butt. The grips are in about Very Good overall condition.
Type of Finish: The pistol is blued. The extractor and rear sight slider have a fire blue finish, the trigger is case colored and the hammer, bolt and bolt stop are “In The White”.
Finish Originality: The finish is original. The stock locking clasp as noted above may have been re-stamped and refinished over.
Bore Condition: The bore is mostly bright with sharp rifling. There is light erosion in the grooves the length of the bore.
Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 85% of its metal finish. There is thinning on the underside and edges of the barrel and its extension, the backstrap, front strap, trigger guard and the edges of the magazine floorplate. There are a few handling marks on the left side of the barrel at the chamber and a ding at the front edge of the lower shoulder. There are light marks around the serial number on the back of the frame and a few tiny marks in the bottom of the magazine floorplate. The serrations on the hammer are sharp and there are a few tiny nicks in the edges of the bolt serrations. The grip screw is sharp and the markings are clear. Overall, this pistol rates in about Fine Plus condition.
Mechanics: The rear of the frame is slotted for a shoulder stock and the bottom of the grip has a lanyard ring. However, the lanyard ring is a split ring like the kind used on key rings, and not solid like the original. There is no play between the barrel extension and the frame. The action functions correctly. We did not fire this pistol.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: in addition to a lanyard ring, this pistol comes with a wooden shoulder stock, a leather holster for the shoulder stock, a wooden handled cleaning rod and a manual. The lanyard ring is not a solid ring but a split ring such as one would use on a key ring. The shoulder stock is walnut that shows light oil staining in the body with heavier staining in the butt and round the hinge. It has a spring loaded metal clasp at the front that locks the stock into the dovetailed slot in the backstrap of the pistol. The top tang of the clasp is marked “891”, the same serial number as that of the pistol. The numbers were added later to an original wood stock. The rear of the stock has a push-button release hinged cover that covers the grip of the gun when used as a holster and serves as a buttplate when attached to the pistol. The release holds the cover securely. The hinge is blued and is developing a plum colored patina with small spots of surface frosting. The stock shows a small crack at its right front edge near the bottom, several compression and handling marks and a few compression marks on the rear face of the butt. The shoulder stock is in about Fine condition. The leather holster is an open framework that we couldn’t possibly describe accurately, so please see our pictures. The rear face of the holster is marked “Industriegruppe / STUTTGART / 1918” and “BA XIV”. The latter refers to Beldeidungsamt des Armeekorp (Army Corps Clothing Depot 14). The holster has a pouch sewn to it for a stripper clip of ammunition and a pouch for a cleaning rod, along with a loop and strap for securing the handle of the rod. There is also loop of leather at the top of the holster for securing the stock. There are two sharp cuts in the surface of the top loop, wear through the finish on bottom corners of the stripper clip pouch and the tip of its flap closure, light wear on the upper edges of the belt loops on the back of the holster, and several handling marks. The stitching has come loose around the muzzle of the holster. The holster is in about Very Good to Fine condition. The cleaning rod has a grooved tip for a patch. The steel part of the rod is developing a plum colored patina. The handle shows very light oil staining and a few compression marks. The rod is in about Very Good condition. The manual is colored and marked “1924”, “The Mauser Automatic Pistol with Wood Holster-Stock”, and “Cal. 7.63”. The manual is obviously not for this pistol, but does give detailed descriptions of how to disassemble the pistol. The manual is in about Fine condition with faint oil stains on the cover.
Our Assessment: The Broomhandle Model 1896 Mauser is certainly an interesting looking firearm. This pistol is a WWI Military Red 9 model in 9mm Parabellum. It has matching numbers on the barrel, frame, lock frame, bolt, bolt stop, hammer and grip panels. The grips are cut with the “Red 9” pattern, but the grips have 27 grooves, not the 24 indicated by Breathed and Schroeder in “System Mauser”. The hammer is the New Safety type. The pistol is in about Fine Plus condition with 85% of its metal finish remaining. It shows thinning on the underside and edges of the barrel and its extension, the backstrap, front strap, trigger guard and the edges of the magazine floorplate. There are a few handling marks and a small ding on the left side of the barrel. There are also a few light marks on the back of the frame and the bottom of the magazine floorplate. The grips show a few compression marks, primarily in the bottoms of the grips, and the front edges of the grooved areas are flattened from shallow compression marks. The bore is mostly bright with sharp rifling and every light erosion. The pistol comes with a wooden shoulder stock/holster that has been numbered to the pistol, and a leather holster for the stock complete with cleaning rod and stripper clip pouch. The holster was made by Industriegruppe in Stuttgart in 1918 and has marks from the Beldeidungsamt des Armeekorp No. 14. This is a very nice package for the serious collector. Most of the WWI pistols had to be modified with shortened barrels and fixed vs. tangent sights due to the Treaty of Versailles, and it is always nice to see one escape the “rework”. The stock and holster also add a nice touch to the collector who would like to display the pistol.