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Old June 23, 2017, 07:42 PM   #1
highpower3006
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100 year old Colt 1911

I picked this old Colt up at an estate sale a week or so ago. It is one of the nicest original condition early military 1911's I have ever seen in person with what I would say was around 95%+ of it's original Colt "brushed blue" finish.

I did some research on it and it turns out it does have a bit of history:

It is one of 1000, serial numbers 144051-145050 shipped from Colt's on 18 April 1917 to the Commanding Officer, Ordnance Depot, Manila, The Philippines.







GHS inspected


HP marked barrel


Original two tone magazine
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Old June 23, 2017, 10:33 PM   #2
James K
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That was one of the first wartime guns; the US declared war on Germany on April 6, 1917. But it is pretty sure that it never spent time in the trenches.

Jim
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Old June 24, 2017, 02:18 AM   #3
JoeSixpack
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Whoa really nice gun.. pretty awesome to think it's 100 years old.. I wouldn't do a thing to it, treat her right
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Old June 24, 2017, 04:34 AM   #4
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A masterpiece of design virtually unchanged after more than 100 years, it remains just as functional and effective today.

Truly remarkable.
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Old June 24, 2017, 11:02 AM   #5
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Nice find.
Was it an auction type of estate sale?
Did you have much competition in buying it or was it just laying on a table with a take it or leave it price tag?
Curious minds want to know.
All I ever find at estate sales seems to be Grannie's hummels, dinner ware and lace doilies.
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Old June 24, 2017, 11:23 AM   #6
highpower3006
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Quote:
Was it an auction type of estate sale?
Did you have much competition in buying it or was it just laying on a table with a take it or leave it price tag?
I was there with a FFL friend of mine. The family was selling off a bunch of their fathers guns. Two days before we got there a major retailer had swooped in and bought 500 guns mostly all military firearms. When we got there, the majority of what was left was hunting rifles, silhouette Contenders and trap shotguns. In the process of pulling out all the stuff that I was totally not interested in, this Colt came out of one of the safes.

I am only interested in military firearms, so my eyes were drawn to it like a duck on a bug. Once I saw the condition of it, I knew that I wasn't going home without it. We negotiated back and forth for a little bit and while I would have paid their original asking price, I wouldn't have felt right if I hadn't a least tried to play "lets make a deal".

After all was said and done I got it for $800 which I feel was a gold plated bargain.
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Old June 24, 2017, 07:51 PM   #7
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I would say Hi-Way Robbery. The pistol is easily worth 5 times the price paid. Then the magazine is probably worth another hundred to a hundred and fifty bucks.
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Old June 24, 2017, 10:45 PM   #8
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The hammer spur has been bobbed, a bit, but otherwise really beautiful.
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Old June 25, 2017, 10:53 AM   #9
g.willikers
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There's no telling what it's actually worth to anyone but you.
And you already decided on that.
Only the person who is willing to actually buy it can say otherwise.
Appraisals only count when the person making it is reaching for their wallet or check book at the same time.
Just enjoy owning it and don't sweat it, other than for insurance purposes.
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Old June 25, 2017, 12:35 PM   #10
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Fantastic find at an excellent price! Lady luck was with you on that one!

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk
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Old June 27, 2017, 06:07 PM   #11
highpower3006
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Quote:
The hammer spur has been bobbed, a bit, but otherwise really beautiful.
Yeah I noticed the hammer as I was buying it, but for the price I was getting it for I wasn't about to complain.

However, I am anal about stuff like that and I will say it was bothering me to no end that the hammer didn't look correct. I was digging through the bosses box of miscellaneous 1911 parts at work today and viola!, I found a long spur hammer lurking in there. I tossed it in as soon as I got home and it looks much better.

I'll save the one that came out of it for posterity in my box of miscellaneous 1911 parts in case I need it later.

When photographed next to my1942 vintage Colt 1911-A1, you can really see the difference.

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Old June 27, 2017, 07:11 PM   #12
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Both are great condition pistols especially for the vintage. I continue to look for a decent A1 to go with my vintage 1918 M1911. Only wish it looked as good as your recent acquisition.

Although even mine looks significantly better than the attached recent auction. I know mine is all original as far as correct parts.


http://www.gunbroker.com/item/645236452
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Old June 27, 2017, 07:42 PM   #13
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Viola??
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Old June 27, 2017, 09:21 PM   #14
highpower3006
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It's meant to be kind of a joke.

Last edited by highpower3006; June 27, 2017 at 09:36 PM.
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Old June 27, 2017, 10:21 PM   #15
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Quote:
Although even mine looks significantly better than the attached recent auction. I know mine is all original as far as correct parts.


http://www.gunbroker.com/item/645236452
I just can't believe that a 60% Black Army would bring $3750. I guess there are people out there that are willing to pay it though....
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Old June 28, 2017, 08:59 AM   #16
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Maybe one of these years, CMP will be able to sell some M1911A1's.
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Old June 28, 2017, 10:36 AM   #17
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Quote:
However, I am anal about stuff like that and I will say it was bothering me to no end that the hammer didn't look correct. I was digging through the bosses box of miscellaneous 1911 parts at work today and viola!, I found a long spur hammer lurking in there. I tossed it in as soon as I got home and it looks much better.
Did swapping the hammer affect thumb safety function? I installed a different hammer in my '18 Colt, and if I squeezed the trigger hard the hammer would drop when I disengaged the safety.
If you are not going to shoot the gun it's not a huge deal, but if live ammo finds its way into the gun, make sure the safeties work.
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Old June 28, 2017, 11:36 AM   #18
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Colt Historian

Pay for the Colt Historian to do an official search and provide you with a letter of provenance.
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Old June 28, 2017, 01:35 PM   #19
highpower3006
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Quote:
Did swapping the hammer affect thumb safety function? I installed a different hammer in my '18 Colt, and if I squeezed the trigger hard the hammer would drop when I disengaged the safety.
It didn't seem to make any difference on mine. Trigger feels the same and the safety works as it should.
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Old June 28, 2017, 08:20 PM   #20
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Being a Philippines pistol, not a standard WWI European Expeditionary Force issue, to me only makes it a better value.

You got it for a very good price, you made money right on the spot.

The value of any item is the negotiated price paid by a willing seller and buyer, you'll do well when it comes time to pass it on.
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Old June 29, 2017, 05:42 AM   #21
highpower3006
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Being a Philippines pistol, not a standard WWI European Expeditionary Force issue, to me only makes it a better value.
I too find the Philippine connection to be fascinating. I have a couple of other items that have the same connection. One is a gavel that was given to my grandfather by a friend of his. There is an inscription on it that reads:

"To Mr. Arthur Davis from Major Arthur Koch US Army. Yacal wood from Rizal's prision, Fort Santiago, Manila P.I. In prison November 3~December 29, 1896."

The other is a Springfield 1903 that was rebuilt at the Benicia Arsenal in California and then shipped to the P.I. where it was inspected at the Philippine Ordnance Depot sometime before WWII.

Note the "BA WL" cartouche overstamped by the "POD D" cartouche of the depot in Manila.


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