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Old 04-05-2017, 09:16 PM
policerevolvercollector policerevolvercollector is offline
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Default Two Finds Today!!! ***LETTER ARRIVED!!!!!***

I was off from work today and went gun shopping.

This pre-10 was in a pawn shop in Macon Georgia:





Love these markings!!



After some haggling and trading, I got the guy down from $379 to $349.

It is serial number C32xxx. DOB please!




I found this in a combination auto parts/hardware/gun store in Butler Georgia!




It is a Colt Model of 1917.in .45 ACP (.45 Auto Rim) However,it has no military markings.










Is this a commercial model or did it just escape the stamping process?

Best,
Charles

Last edited by policerevolvercollector; 04-20-2017 at 08:27 PM.
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Old 04-05-2017, 09:43 PM
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Nice scores!

Love that big Colt! I known Smith 1917s were marked on the bottom of the barrel - not sure about Colts. Sure looks military to me.
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Old 04-05-2017, 09:45 PM
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Hey Charles, according to my SC of S&W 4th, your M&P pre-10 was probably manufactured sometime in '48 time frame. (I originally read the SN as C +6 digits. Thanks to Ken for the correct interpretation!)
I like this one a lot. I love those old round front sights.

Your 1917 Colt is gonna be a guess; I'm thinking sometime in the '20s, and because it has no martial markings, it's probably a Commercial model. I'm probably wrong about this one, but I'm certain someone with much more knowledge about these will help.

Hugh

I remembered that I had one previously:
This is what the butt would look like if military;


Bottom of barrel;



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Last edited by 19leben; 04-05-2017 at 11:20 PM. Reason: Misread the Smith SN.
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Old 04-05-2017, 10:06 PM
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Thanks for the reply!

Do I remember correctly that just after the war (WWI), Colt used up the spare parts and sold some "1917s" commercially?

Many years ago, I had S&W 1917 marked as your Colt is marked.
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Old 04-05-2017, 10:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by policerevolvercollector View Post
I was off from work today and went gun shopping.

This pre-10 was in a pawn shop in Macon Georgia:





Love these markings!!



After some haggling and trading, I got the guy down from $379 to $349.

It is serial number C32xxx. DOB please!
Most likely Oct/Nov 1948.
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Old 04-05-2017, 10:50 PM
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Charles, you must take more time off and look for more jems like these! I sure like that subby! Kyle
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Old 04-05-2017, 10:53 PM
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I think the Colt is a model of 1909.
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LEO918 View Post
I think the Colt is a model of 1909.
I just had a closer look. The chambers are longer than the ACP/Auto Rim round. It chambers a 45 Colt cartridge perfectly. So, it would be a 1909. Commercial?

Best,
Charles
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:35 PM
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That's what I'd call a "good day".
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LEO918 View Post
I think the Colt is a model of 1909.
It's not a M1909. Nor it is a M1917. The 1909 has a much longer extractor rod knob, and it also would have a M1909 butt stamping. If it chambers a .45 Colt, it would necessarily have been re-chambered for it, or else have a .45 Colt New Service cylinder. Does the .45 Colt case chamber completely, all the way down to the rim? Simplest answer is that it is an early .45 Colt New Service with 1917 grips. What's the SN (inside the crane)?

Last edited by DWalt; 04-06-2017 at 12:17 AM.
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Old 04-06-2017, 12:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DWalt View Post
Simplest answer is that it is an early .45 Colt New Service with 1917 grips. What's the SN (inside the crane)?

S/N 24xxx which dates it to 1910. The .45 Colt does fit properly. I'm pretty happy with it as an early New Service. The .45 Colt is a great round.

Best,
Charles

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Old 04-07-2017, 03:46 PM
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I just got off the phone w/ Paul from Colt Archives. My New Service is 100% correct. No barrel swap. It is a commercial USMC 1909 that was a private purchase by a Marine Corps Officer in 1909. Only two of these were known to exist....now three!! Mine went to Col. Charles L.F. Robinson. Col. Robinson was....wait for it....the president of Colt from 1911-1916!!!

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Old 04-07-2017, 03:52 PM
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Fantastic finds!!! The place you got those from was it the NAPA/gun store in Butler, GA?
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Old 04-07-2017, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
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Fantastic finds!!! The place you got those from was it the NAPA/gun store in Butler, GA?
The Colt was at the NAPA/ACE Hardware/Gun store. The S&W was at a pawn shop in Macon Ga.
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Old 04-07-2017, 04:00 PM
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Finding that Colt is like hitting a walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth to win the World Series!
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Old 04-07-2017, 04:33 PM
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I would love to know the story on how that Colt went from Col. Charles L.F. Robinson to a small gun store/auto parts store in middle Georgia. Great score!
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Old 04-07-2017, 06:12 PM
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Wow that's crazy news on the Colt! Good thing the dealer didn't look into it, I imagine the price would've been a wee bit higher.



You got a real piece of history there. Does it belong in a museum? The Marine's or Colt's? 1911-1916 sounds like the best time to be running Colt, you had the epic 1911 pistol, but didn't have to deal with the frenzy after the U.S. entered WWI.
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Old 04-07-2017, 06:19 PM
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The clerk thought it was a Colt 1917 .45acp because he owns one of those. The sales tag reflected that information too. It would be a very easy mistake to make....

Best,
Charles
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Old 04-07-2017, 06:55 PM
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The standard USMC 1909 had a round butt. This one has the square butt of the New Service and the 1917. Of course, back then it was a bit easier to get what you wanted from Colt or S&W.
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Old 04-07-2017, 09:01 PM
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"I just got off the phone w/ Paul from Colt Archives. My New Service is 100% correct. No barrel swap. It is a commercial USMC 1909 that was a private purchase by a Marine Corps Officer in 1909. Only two of these were known to exist....now three!! Mine went to Col. Charles L.F. Robinson. Col. Robinson was....wait for it....the president of Colt from 1911-1916!!! "

I can believe it was a private purchase civilian New Service in .45 Colt for Col Robinson. However, it is not a normal USMC M1909, at least to the extent that it differs in several significant respects from those 1300 M1909s sold and delivered to the USMC. First is the extractor rod knob, as previously mentioned. All M1909s (Army, Navy, and USMC) had a longer (three-section) extractor rod knob, somewhat longer than those shorter (two section) knobs used on the civilian New Service and M1917 revolvers. There was a purpose for that, namely to provide a shorter extractor rod stroke limit to help protect against fired case jams during extraction. Actually, the M1917 knob differs slightly from those used on the civilian New Service. Second, the M1909s made for the USMC had USMC (in two lines) stamped on the butt, plus a unique USMC number, not actually a serial number. Third, the USMC grip frame had rounded corners, not square, not actually a round butt, a la S&W, but easily distinguishable from the Army M1909 and the civilian New Service. That required special wood grips, which were also checkered. The more common Army M1909 used smooth grips, similar to those used on the M1917. And those M1909 grips were inspector-stamped on the bottom flats of the grip, most being R.A.C., for sub-inspector Rinaldo A. Carr. M1917 smooth wood grips were not so stamped, nor were civilian grips.
------------------
My two Army M1909s. Note the long extractor rod knobs and square grip frame corners.

Last edited by DWalt; 04-07-2017 at 09:58 PM.
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Old 04-07-2017, 09:11 PM
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Sweet find in my favorite caliber. Sometimes a good guy gets lucky.
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Old 04-07-2017, 09:31 PM
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Nice score on a rare gun. These are the types of posts that keep us beating the bushes looking for that find. Congratulations.
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Old 04-07-2017, 09:42 PM
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What a great day and two fantastic finds. Love the little pre-10 and who doesn't like a 1917.
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Old 04-07-2017, 09:54 PM
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Charles:

Wonderful finds, both!! But the Colt has to be one of the most astonishing items that you have dug up yet!! Keep us in the loop!!

Best Regards, Les
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Old 04-07-2017, 10:25 PM
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Was that NAPA hardware store at the end of a rainbow? A belated April fools joke?.......no? Wow, very nice find.
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Old 04-08-2017, 12:24 AM
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Charles Leonard Frost Robinson b. 9 JUL 1874, New York, died off Newport, Rhode Island, 6 Jul 1916, aboard his yacht "Savarona", married on 30 June 1895, Elizabeth Hart Jarvis Beach, of Hartford CT, b. 3 NOV 1869, d. 13 Apr 1936. Elizabeth was the niece of Samuel Colt by his sister-in-law Hettie Hart Jarvis, sister of Colt's wife Elizabeth Hart Jarvis.
The eldest son of Charles L. F. and Elizabeth Hart Jarvis Beach Robinson, Caldwell Colt Robinson, was a platoon leader in 82d Company, 3d Battalion, 6th Marines, 2nd Div., AEF, when he was killed at Belleau Wood, France, 6 June 1918. Caldwell was awarded the Navy Cross, the DSC and a Silver Star for his service.
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Old 04-08-2017, 01:15 AM
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Quote:
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Charles Leonard Frost Robinson b. 9 JUL 1874, New York, died off Newport, Rhode Island, 6 Jul 1916, aboard his yacht "Savarona", married on 30 June 1895, Elizabeth Hart Jarvis Beach, of Hartford CT, b. 3 NOV 1869, d. 13 Apr 1936. Elizabeth was the niece of Samuel Colt by his sister-in-law Hettie Hart Jarvis, sister of Colt's wife Elizabeth Hart Jarvis.
The eldest son of Charles L. F. and Elizabeth Hart Jarvis Beach Robinson, Caldwell Colt Robinson, was with the 5th Marines, AEF, when he was killed at Belleau Wood, France, 4 June 1918. Caldwell was awarded the Navy Cross, the DSC and a Silver Star for his service.
WOW! In addition to everything else, he was related to the Colt family by marriage.

Thanks for posting!!

Some more info taken from an online biography:

Charles Leonard Frost Robinson was president of Colt’s Patent Fire Arms Manufacturing Company from 1911 to 1916. He took a position at the company in 1896 when he married Elizabeth Beach, the niece of Samuel Colt’s wife, Elizabeth. As president, Robinson oversaw the production of the Model 1911 Automatic Pistol, the principle sidearm of American forces throughout most of the twentieth century. When World War I broke out in 1914, Robinson guided the company as it quickly and successfully met the Allied demand for armaments. Robinson passed away unexpectedly from heart disease in 1916.

He was also a Mayflower descendant.

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Old 04-08-2017, 09:34 AM
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Charles - "The eldest son of Charles L. F. and Elizabeth Hart Jarvis Beach Robinson, Caldwell Colt Robinson, was a platoon leader in 82d Company, 3d Battalion, 6th Marines, 2nd Div., AEF, when he was killed at Belleau Wood, France, 6 June 1918. Caldwell was awarded the Navy Cross, the DSC and a Silver Star for his service."
Just had another thought for you to chase down: Father Charles L. F. bought gun in 1909, died July 1916. Son was a Marine officer, went to France in 1917, was a platoon leader and was KIA at Belleau Wood; do you suppose son took father's gun to France, to Belleau Wood?
Tantalizing, eh? You have quite a find there!

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Old 04-08-2017, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by policerevolvercollector View Post
WOW! In addition to everything else, he was related to the Colt family by marriage.

Thanks for posting!!

Some more info taken from an online biography:
...
He was also a Mayflower descendant.
He was also a Son of the American Revolution, and a hereditary member of Society of the Cincinnati.
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Last edited by ameridaddy; 04-09-2017 at 10:01 AM. Reason: corrected "Son" of the Cincinnati to "Society"
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Old 04-08-2017, 12:37 PM
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Bravo! Great day for you yesterday. Enjoy your new finds, and please... go buy a lottery ticket! Cheers from here.
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Old 04-08-2017, 02:44 PM
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Why does this kind of thing never happen to me ? Congratulations !

Larry
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Old 04-08-2017, 10:58 PM
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I don't think Charles L F Robinson was a Marine officer. He went to work for Colt at the age of 22 and died at age 42. He is not listed as a Marine officer in the list of Navy and Marine officers. His rank of "Colonel" was probably honorary or in the Connecticut State Militia.

It is still neat as all get-out to own a New Service that belonged to a former Colt president.
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Old 04-08-2017, 11:47 PM
policerevolvercollector policerevolvercollector is offline
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That sounds logical. I had the Colt letter expedited. So, I'll have it in a week or so and will post it then. The "Colonel" probably was honorary. However, his son was a 2nd Lieutenant in the Marines and was killed in action in France in 1918.

Was there a Marine Corps Reserve back then??

Best,
Charles

Last edited by policerevolvercollector; 04-08-2017 at 11:48 PM.
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Old 04-09-2017, 12:03 AM
Muley Gil Muley Gil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by policerevolvercollector View Post
That sounds logical. I had the Colt letter expedited. So, I'll have it in a week or so and will post it then. The "Colonel" probably was honorary. However, his son was a 2nd Lieutenant in the Marines and was killed in action in France in 1918.

Was there a Marine Corps Reserve back then??

Best,
Charles
The Marine Corps Reserve was created in August 1916.
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Old 04-09-2017, 04:59 AM
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Charles, my friend, you have done it again!!!! Both are just simply wonderful. An astounding feat of shopping! You sure know how to do it!
Congrats on two outstanding purchases. The M&P is very nice. Great history of the Colt! Can't wait for the next post of your next treasure find. I MUST come down to Georgia!
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Old 04-09-2017, 07:25 AM
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Both are nice pieces. Would have loved to have found it(the USMC) myself. Congrats!!
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Old 04-09-2017, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muley Gil View Post
I don't think Charles L F Robinson was a Marine officer. He went to work for Colt at the age of 22 and died at age 42. He is not listed as a Marine officer in the list of Navy and Marine officers. His rank of "Colonel" was probably honorary or in the Connecticut State Militia.

It is still neat as all get-out to own a New Service that belonged to a former Colt president.
That's what I found. Nothing on his being a Marine, but his obit says he was a colonel in the Newport Artillery, probably a Rhode Island organization.
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Old 04-09-2017, 10:40 PM
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Charles, both those finds are awesome but the Colt is off the chart over the top. Major congratulations to you sir. Kindest regards, hardcase60
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Old 04-09-2017, 10:59 PM
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Macon huh...? Make sure to run the serial #.
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Old 04-10-2017, 12:00 AM
policerevolvercollector policerevolvercollector is offline
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Macon huh...? Make sure to run the serial #.
VERY funny!! I wasn't concerned BEFORE you mentioned it!
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Old 04-10-2017, 12:02 AM
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Quote:
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That's what I found. Nothing on his being a Marine, but his obit says he was a colonel in the Newport Artillery, probably a Rhode Island organization.
This just keeps getting more & more interesting! Thanks for all of the research!
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Old 04-10-2017, 12:41 AM
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Quote:
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That's what I found. Nothing on his being a Marine, but his obit says he was a colonel in the Newport Artillery, probably a Rhode Island organization.
To carry this further, the Newport Artillery was indeed a Rhode Island militia unit dating back to the Revolution. In 1903, a law passed that required state units to standardize under federal regulations if they wanted to become part of the National Guard. The NA decided not to do so, and apparently turned into more of a civic organization, which would fit with Mr. Robinson being an elected Colonel without any extended military experience in his biography. The NA is supposedly still doing commemorative activities in colonial historical uniforms today.
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Old 04-10-2017, 07:31 AM
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This merely proves the point that we never really own our guns, we are just merely caretakers while we still draw breath. There are lots of guns out there like this that have fallen through the cracks of time and are waiting to be found.

This also answers the questions about having a plain Jane revolver lettered. They aren't all engraved on the side with the names of the famous former caretakers.

You have to beat the bushes and do the research.

Charles, congratulations on a great find and thanks for sharing the story. This is what takes gun collecting to a whole new level.
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:28 PM
policerevolvercollector policerevolvercollector is offline
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Here's the Colt letter!



Best,
Charles
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:35 PM
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Way cool. Gotta get back to Macon (love all night) for all those Jamie Johnson fans
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Old 04-20-2017, 10:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by policerevolvercollector View Post
Here's the Colt letter!



Best,
Charles
Charles,

Amazing find and most interesting to find a gun that once belonged to a president of Colt's!

Congrats on the gun and thanks so much for sharing it with us.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
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Old 04-20-2017, 11:45 PM
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This is where I got it:

NAPA/Gun Store


Best,
Charles

Last edited by policerevolvercollector; 04-20-2017 at 11:50 PM.
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Old 04-21-2017, 07:14 AM
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Just a question. Would he not have been the President of Colt? Curious as to why the Colt Historian uses Colt's.

In that same vein, were Daniel and Horace the owners of Smith and Wesson's?

I am sure that they were but I bet their Smith and Wesson's went bang.....
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Old 04-21-2017, 07:33 AM
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WOW! Now that's what I call a fun and productive day off. And that Colt ?
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Old 04-21-2017, 07:37 AM
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Colt's Patent Firearms was the official company name at the time, I believe.
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