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DennyB
May 8, 2005, 08:11 PM
I have a Iver Johnson's Safety Hammer Model .38 S&W. Top break 5 shot revolver. My question is . Blue book says it was made between 1892 & 1950. Does any one know if any ever had serial #'s ,Mine does not and If I knew that a certain year they stated putting them on the guns , I would have some idea how old it is. :rolleyes:

Tom2
May 17, 2005, 05:21 PM
I would guess it is prewar, but cannot go further than that. As a general idea, I believe they required handguns to be serialised well before long guns. So if you could find the date that it was required to number pistols in general, you could maybe have another date to work from. Good luck.

Tim DeClaire
May 19, 2005, 12:56 PM
They serialized their handguns from 1894 through 1946. Production for these stared in 1893 and Serial numbers for the Large frame .38 cal 1st Model beganm in 1894 with 00001 to100000 (Saftey Hammer model). In figuring your firearm out I would need any and all info on the gun. Patent dates, check for numbers on the butt, under the grips, trigger gaurds, etc. The writing on the braarel, especially patent date would be key. I'm not slamming Blue Book, their good, but W.E. Goforth worte a book cvalled Iver & Johnson Arms & Cycle Works Handungs 1871-1978.

Also check to see if you have a single post top latch, leaf spring and free wheeling cylinder.

By the by, serial numbers were not required on firearms in the US until 1968.