Today’s Photo of the Day is something spectacular. A time machine back to WW2.

I visited a friend, we started talking, had some cookies and coffee. Talk was good.

But no coffee without guns, so my friend places his new purchase on the table.

I’m not specially into 1911’s, but even I can tell this is something special.

The owner of this 1911 is obviously the United States of America – it says so on the side at least! – but it was carried by someone who was unfortunate enough to crash in a plane over Germany during WW2.

1945

Guns & Coffee

 

The gun seems to have been made in 1943. (Serial nr.: 1532015 = 1943 MODEL 1911 MILITARY)

The story carries on, but not in this POTD.

Do you know anything about this gun? Please let us know!

The “love handles” (grips) are obviously changed. Enjoy!

 

CLARIFICATION: Nothing in this article, apart from this clarification below, has been edited.

There are lots of complaints about my grammar, spelling etc. Sorry, english/american is not my first language but I try my best. You can see this in my signature as well.

I can encourage some people to work on their reading comprehension skills when it comes to the grips.

It clearly says in my text that the grips were changed. There were no grips when the owner bought it, but as they’re a nice thing to have on a gun he added something which could blend in.

Also, I never wrote this 1911 was in the US, because it isn’t. There are collectors of guns outside the US.

I also added another “featured” image.

As for the price of the gun you’d be surprised, but you will have to wait until part II. Thanks and have a nice day!



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  • Bang Switch

    I would like to hear the rest of the story.

    • Don Ward

      The rest of the story is that this firearm is most probably faked.

  • Swarf

    Would love to know the rest of the story.

    Also, someone’s Great Grandma was hot.

    • PeterK

      I’ma go out on a limb here and call pin-up girl, not anyone known to the owner. I could be wrong, though.

      • Swarf

        Looks like you were mostly right. Movie star, which is still a pin up, of sorts.

        Quite the attractive lady.

        • Buddy_Bizarre

          I think Howard Hughes used to hit that.

          • Swarf

            Before or after the fingernail collections and the tissue boxes on the feet?

            This is important.

      • Norm Glitz

        The article does say that the grips were changed.

  • John

    I don’t understand. Were the grips on it during the crash? There’s no way that kind of aftermarket existed in the mid 40’s.

    • David W.

      Those are sweetheart grips. Guys would use pieces of canopy to make the clear grip and put a picture of their wife/sweetheart behind the grips. There’s and article on them on this site somewhere.

      • Don Ward

        Indeed. It was a Katie A. article so caveat emptor.

        www DOT thefirearmblog DOT com/blog/2016/05/03/world-war-ii-sweetheart-grips/

        Replace DOT with periods because using links is absolutely HARAM on Disqus.

        • Sgt. Stedenko

          No I link all the time on Disqus.
          It’s the TFB that gets all verklempt with links

        • iksnilol

          http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2016/05/03/world-war-ii-sweetheart-grips/

          Not really, you just gotta be aa B-list celebrity like me to post links instantly. I find it kinda funny you mentioned it was haram to post links on Disqus and I am a muslim with no issue posting links on Disqus.

          • FarmerB

            Eid Mubarak

          • iksnilol

            Ah, thanks 🙂

    • Byte Stryke

      Actually that “aftermarket” was a personal creation made by putting your sweethearts picture behind a piece of acrylic. Usually from a broken/salvage canopy.
      It is considered “Battlefield Art”

      • codfilet

        “Plexiglas” was the term for the plastic canopy and window material they used back then-and this sort of thing was quite common-guys also made knife handles out of plexiglas, often with photos underneath.

    • Erik B

      No.

    • Vanns40

      Did anyone bother to read the entire story, especially the part that says “there were NO grips on it when he bought it…”?

      • Gunner4guy

        Reading and writing plus comprehension took a dive somewhere in the late 70’s/early 80’s or so. Few now take the time to read articles – they ‘speed read’ them and, in the process, miss much of the information contained IN the article. We ARE also presuming the author(If a professional) could write a clear, concise sentence or paragraph that was correctly punctuated. OKAY, rant over – I was raised in the 50’s and 60’s when you had to WORK to get even a C+ in English. And we wrote in cursive – no printing allowed unless the assignment specifically required it.

        • Vanns40

          Amen, er, correct, sir!

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    Thats my grandmother!

    • dansquad

      How fortunate to be the secret grandson of a ‘grand’ actress…
      (Ava Gardner in 1945)

      • Outlaw

        Just proves that fine is fine no matter what the point of time in history is. BTW the gun and Ava.

    • Don Ward

      If I happened to be caught in a time vortex that sent me back in time… I’d totally be your grandfather.

      But yes, Ava Gardner was pretty hot; albeit with a poor taste in men.

      • iksnilol

        Hey, with a poor taste in men you should have a shot. 😉

        • Swarf

          Hey o!

          • Leigh Rich

            Love all the reply’s LOL

      • M40

        A beautiful, wealthy woman with poor taste in men? I think you just described my ideal woman!

    • 426

      She is hot!

    • Bill

      Granny Panties!

      • thumpgunner

        Still more class than the women in Hollyweird today.

        • Kafir1911

          Roger that.

    • Tassiebush

      GILF!

    • Kafir1911

      You are hot for your Grandmother??

    • Proud_to_be_American

      thunk-thunk-thunk (Bdig tapping on microphone) Is this thing on?

      • bdig33@hotmail.com

        I can hear them breathing.

  • Pedenzo

    Looks a little different than my 1943 issued .45….I too would like to hear the rest of the story…

  • Phil Hsueh

    FYI, it’s 1911s (no apostrophe) not 1911’s. An apostrophe S does not make a word plural, it makes it possessive, except for the word it, in which case it’s is the contraction of it is and the possessive form of it is with no apostrophe.

    • Swarf

      The way I remember that little idiosyncrasy of the language is “It possesses no apostrophe.”

      • Erik B

        Who would have know that TFB commentary fields would be come a lesson in English!

      • DeathFromTheShadows

        its “IT IS posses no apostrophe except for it’s own use”

    • AlanHan

      The rule you site is not absolute. Usage manuals approve a variety of exceptions, most having to do with pluralizing numbers, for example “the 1960’s.”

      • ARCNA442

        *cite

        But I agree with you, it is commonly accepted to put an apostrophe before a plural “s” for numbers and acronyms.

        • Sasquatch

          ¡I hate grammer!

          • Sunshine_Shooter

            Rules are hard. Why can’t we just type what we want? asldifj9sjvw vp9wdk woperg, know what I’m saying?

          • jwc1480

            Humpty-Dumpty tried that. Look where it got’em.

          • jwc1480

            Sorry, that should have been a reply to Mr. Sonshyn Shuuter. lol

          • Snake

            That’s got’im!

          • Sasquatch

            I feel ya man. I feel ya

          • disqus_e0XtJDMPfo

            Keep your hands to yourself.

          • Sasquatch

            Hey this doesn’t concern you

          • Proud_to_be_American

            No.

          • Dave

            I’d like to type the ownership transfer documents for that 45!!!!!!

          • jimpeel

            Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it
            deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny
            iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae.
            The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm.
            Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef,
            but the wrod as a wlohe.

            Or rather…

            According to a researcher (sic) at Cambridge University, it
            doesn’t matter in what order the letters in a word are, the only
            important thing is that the first and last letter be at the right place.
            The rest can be a total mess and you can still read it without problem.
            This is because the human mind does not read every letter by itself but
            the word as a whole.

          • DeathFromTheShadows

            this is only true for those with the higher mental capability to read by what is known by spot recognition, which leaves all liberals, vegans and single celled creatures out.

          • usmarshals@yahoo.org

            Hey DFTS–Isn’t Clint Eastwood a vegan? Stand next to Rowdy or Callahan and repeat that (check that shoulder-holster for a Mod 29!)

          • Sunshine_Shooter

            I replied to an individual who said grammar sucks. You said that a word can be misspelled and still understood. Grammar is the structure of word placement and usage, not the spelling. Also, for the misspelled words to be understood, the words have to be taught correctly in the first place. It’s not like we could just stop teaching people to correctly spell words.

          • jimpeel

            You asked ” Why can’t we just type what we want?”

            I simply replied to that query with the fact that one can, indeed, just type what they want as long as the placement of the first and last letters are correct.

          • ChiefBoring

            Redundant; I read your first paragraph with no errors, thus proving your point.

          • David F. Podesta

            I think it’sKlingon for “WTF?”

          • Michael A Chrest

            Before we had dictionaries. That was the norm. Then the Grammar Nazies took over.

          • Proud_to_be_American

        • Duster

          Actually it is not accepted in any Anglophile nation that emphasizes standard English – not even in the US. The apostrophe is ALWAYS “possessive” except when it marks a contraction of one or more words. The apparent exception of “its” is because in English it belongs in the same group with “his,” “hers,” and “theirs.” All of these are possessive pronouns, just as “its” is. There is no contraction associated with plurals or numbers. The standard, if you wanted to write about a largish generalized number would be “tens,” “hundreds,” “thousands,” etc. No apostrophe.

          • DeathFromTheShadows

            Wrong Duster but what the hell would you know, An anglophile is someone with a fetish for British culture… And you phuqued that word’s usage up bigtime.

          • fcarlmayo

            And that is why exactly English, the compilation of 5 other languages is SO hard that those who learn it for a 2nd language have so much trouble. Then again, so do most American speaking people. English on the other hand have a generally better grasp on it since they have spoken it more correctly for years So, people can ditrate what works for them, and the rest can just learn to read American. All one needs in this life to converse universally across the world is English, Spanish and French. The rest, not so much!

          • M40

            All one normally needs to converse globally is English. Kids across the planet learn English in school. Most ship to shore, and pretty much all aircraft to tower comms, are in English. It doesn’t matter if a Lufthansa flight is landing in Zimbabwe… they’re speaking English. Most worldwide trade is conducted in English. If a French guy travels to Spain on business, they will usually converse in English as the intermediary language. Travel to China, the Middle East… heck pretty much anywhere in the world… and you’ll find that the street signs, and all other official things are shown in the native language… and English. I found it kind of funny during the Gulf War when all the street signs guiding our tanks to Baghdad… were helpfully lettered in plain English.

            PS – English is a “compilation of 5 other languages”? Methinks you’ve drastically underestimated the British ability to beg, borrow, adopt and steal terminology from every port of call they ever sailed into. The English language has a VAST vocabulary, simply because it has words grabbed from points all across the globe.

      • KestrelBike

        aight. (see what I did there?)

      • Veteran Gunsmith at large

        Yes, yes, we all know and realize how popular usage has decayed the use of English language. You can cite rules back and forth, but English in it’s truest form has been ruined by the accepted use faction of scholars. It is never improper to use the language as intended, despite the softening of what has become acceptable use. Ain’t was looked down upon as an ignorant or uneducated and unsophisticated word, until some scholars included it in the English dictionary in the 1970s. Because of the progression of change, we can now say just about any cr*p we want to and it will be all right with someone.

        Back to the subject – this 1911 appears to be correct configuration for a world war two pistol. It has the larger sights, arched mainspring housing, frame cuts near the trigger and extended grip safety tang as well as the short trigger of the A1 the narrow spur hammer of a 1911A1. The lanyard loop is consistent with either 1911 or 1911A1 series pistols. As far as appearance goes, this could have been buried anywhere from 10 to 80 years depending on soil chemistry and moisture content. The magazines are a curiosity – one appears grossly pitted with rust, as if it were submerged for a period of time, but the other seems in rough but usable condition. The holster looks worn and dry rotted, missing all but the main body of it, and not rehabilitatable. Of course, the looks don’t matter, the serial number and manufacturer identification tell the story better than anything else. The finish isn’t that severely damaged; you could also apply naval jelly and a light coat of oil to get that same patina on a brand new blued gun for that matter. The pitting of that magazine is also inconsistent with the overall condition of the pistol. If these were in close proximity to each other, you would expect the same level of severe pitting and rust on the pistol and the other magazine. This makes me wonder if all of these items belong together or if they were put together from different sources to make the story believable.

        Somewhere there is paperwork on this pistol if it is indeed government issue. I have a problem with one aspect of this tale; it is curious as to why it would be abandoned by the airman having been shot down over enemy territory, and you would think if the Germans captured it, they would have kept it in much better condition than this is in. I know if I was in the place of that airman or pilot, the last thing I would abandon would be my sidearm.

        • FarmerB

          It’s. But you probably did that on purpose, right?

        • Erik B

          Thanks! Great insight and comments.

          I’ll give away a little more from the story. Plane crashed. Boys played at the wrecked plane. Found the 1911. Then it was stored – I have to get more details from the owner.

          One of the magazines was most likely inserted in the 1911 the other not, hence the different condition.

          There is soot inside the holster.

        • codfilet

          There is no doubt this is an authentic WW2-issue, US Property .45. The real question is, what is the proof of this story? How did a pistol like this not get seized by the police in Germany after it was found? You can’t just put something like this on ebay-this isn’t a rusty relic beyond any hope of functioning again-this gun looks like it could be in operating condition.
          Depending on the stage of the war in Europe, an airman that bailed out over Germany might have only been a few miles from US lines, or able to hide out for a few days until Patton rolled in. This is about the only way he could retain his weapon. Most airmen bailing out were met by German soldiers or angry civilians waiting for them on the ground. There was no real chance for escape.
          I wonder if this is just a .45 that some GI brought home from WW2 (not all of them were totally honest about turning in all their gear), and got wrapped up and put out in the barn where the kids wouldn’t find it? Gov’t issue .45s were readily available as surplus for many years after WW2, also. Like I hear at the gunshows so often, “Buy the gun, not the story”

          • dltaylor51

            Run the serial numbers to the dept.of defense and see where its last mission mission was.

          • DeathFromTheShadows

            If it was truly a WWII issued piece the likelihood of a trace of provenance is minimal. Between several fires and floods a vast majority of WWII and prior records have been destroyed, including vehicles arms and especially veterans records, Add to the fact that during the period there were no computerized records and at this date nothing less than a judicial order will move the DOD to look up such items if they do survive.

          • dltaylor51

            You never know,the one thing about the govt.they thrive on paperwork and redundancy,my dad was in the Marines during wwII and he could tell you the serial numbers of his 45 and MI right up untill the day he died because being caught will the wrong serial numbers on your weapons was a court martialabl offense.Somewhere those numbers are out their and they will be connected to a unit or an individual.

          • DeathFromTheShadows

            Just because an individual knew the numbers doesnt mean the govt did. MY Father was one of the individuals responsible for those records, as well as repairs issuance and taking custody of the weapons when troops were discharged as well as fighting. per his statement those records were constantly being destroyed in the field before there was a chance of sending them to the rear echelon . And As I had previously stated there had been several fires and floods that have destroyed WWII records, so the likelyhood of provenance existing is very low, and add to that trying to get someone to research it, regardless of historic value.

          • Navy Davy

            Man, I remember going in to a gun store and seeing an old oaken barrel full, yes full, of these 1911 .45ACP pistols, all for sale, dig in, find one you like, buy it instantly, take it home with you. And this was in California! Cannot remember the price. I was totally not into guns at the time. Likely could not have come up with the $$$ either.
            Years later returned, clerk said ???
            Was later all set to get a Browning 9mm hi-cap, saved for it, then a guy at work heard, offered another, cheaper, and I got the cheap revolver instead. Regretted it ever since.

          • David169

            I can remember surplus M1911s at Golden State Firearms in Pasadena, Ca. I would dig thru the boxes of them to find the best ones. Remington- Rand and Ithaca were $40; Colts were $50. A friend of mine found a North American Arms for $40 (new). He said it was rarer than a Singer Sewing Machine Co. M1911. It sounds cheap now but in the late 50’s and early 60’s $40 or $50 was almost a months apartment rent. My rent then was $58/mo.

          • carlcasino

            You must have been a civilian? My Base pay was $85.00/mo.

          • DeathFromTheShadows

            David is a bullshitter he claims his friend found a surplus North American Arms 1911 in one of those boxes, North American Arms was first founded in 1972, 27 years AFTER the end of WWII…

          • Duster

            Sadly, now California is run by immigrant easterners and clowns like Brown with no sense of history and a fairytale view of how things “ought to be.”

          • captainbobby

            My theory is that today’s California politicians are the 70’s hippies that were doing drugs. LSD has been proven to cause strange reactions years after taking a “trip” with it.
            So here we are, years later, with these former hippies now in political office and passing weird laws….

          • Duster

            I grew up here in the ’50s and ’60s. The hippies I knew mostly headed out of state to get away from the Disco generation. The ’70s mark a shift between rural and urban views in many people. One things about Urban views is that they are often in serious disconnect with reality beyond city streets. One of my neighbors, a vegan, was fined for aggravated animal abuse because he was trying to make his dog a vegan! Malnutrition of the dog lead to a visit to the vet that lead to a visit by the police and a whopping fine. The fellow is convinced that it is all “political” and directed at his veganism. He is absolutely convinced that he could make his dog into a vegan if there were no political interference. The entire state is now run by folks who think like that.

          • DeathFromTheShadows

            this story is getting deep North American Arms? NAA was first founded in 1972 and never held a defense contract to build 1911’s during WWII which was going on from 1939 to 1945… What some people believe or think others will is amazing…

          • David169

            I have seen this pistol. It has the U.S. Property stamped or rolled onto the slide and frame. I first saw the pistol in about 1960. It was parkerized and had the molten lead dip discoloration on the fore part of the slide like my Remington Rand 45 and a lot of the Garands. I was told there was a company called North American Arms that was around during the early years of WW-2. The owner of this pistol is deceased and I have no idea who owns it now. The person who bought it told me the company North American Arms got a demonstration contract to manufacture a small number of pistols at the start of WW-2. He also had a book that listed all of the manufacturers of 45s and what their production numbers were during WW-2. Singer got a similar but larger demonstration contract. North American Arms like Singer could not produce the M1911 A-1 for the price the military was buying them from Remington Rand, Ithaca or Colt. Both companies made high quality pistols. Do some research before you call someone a bullshitter. I’m sure the NRA can help.

          • DeathFromTheShadows

            keep smoking it moron

          • David169

            Hey Bucko I just looked on the internet and found that North American Arms was in Quebec and produced 5 or 6 pistols. The owner of the pistol, Ned Helin, worked for Harry Sanford of the later Automag fame when he owned a gun store in Pasadena. Ned had said it was the rarest of the 45’s and with a production of 5 or 6 made under a government contract it may be. Here’s another tidbit for your arrogant mouth H&R made 20 M1911 A-1s during WW-2. Next time you shoot of your mouth try to know what you are talking about or at least take the time to research your comments before you call somebody a bullshitter.

        • mbrd

          “accepted use faction” and “scholar” should not be in the same phrase. on the other hand, never finish a sentence with a preposition, at.

        • DeathFromTheShadows

          Dude the “larger sights” are post WWII civilian items not WWII based government issue. Fortunately you screwed up on that comment as it has the typical GI sights for the 1911, And as for the lanyard loop, since the firearm is associated with a downed aircraft, the loop is irrelevant since the mainspring housing was routinely changed out for one with the loop for aircrew in the Army Air Corp and then the Air Force to enable the use of a retention lanyard, but rarely so for navy or marine pilots and crew. The rest of your commentary on burial time and paperwork is pure bovine excrement. In your ignorance you neglect commonsense narratives such as the fact that the airman may have died in the incident, or concealed the firearm before being captured or any of a number of real world situations that bullshitters such as yourself are to unintelligent to even consider.

      • S. Plankenberg

        The word is ” cite “.

    • Core

      My 1911’s amused..

    • DeathFromTheShadows

      Wrong jackass the apostrophe S is correct to pluralize numerically named items, It ALSO can mean the possessive However without it the S becomes part of the numeric string and doesn’t allow it to modify to plural OR possessive. You must be a product of a public school that used common core curriculum

  • Christian Hedegaard-Schou

    Can we please make a rule that people STOP saying how they “aren’t really into 1911s” before posting things about 1911s?

    WE GET IT ALREADY. Some of you aren’t into 1911s. Cool story bro.

    • I had just read the article before reading your comment, and afterward I was wondering what you were talking about. I don’t think this is something to get very annoyed about.

    • Swarf

      Cool story, bro.

    • codfilet

      *cough* Glock fanboys *cough*

      • Proud_to_be_American

        ….

        • jcitizen

          That’s what my Dad’s pistol looks like. Even though he carried it on every B-17 mission he was on, it is still in impeccable condition – he wanted to make sure it would shoot if he was shot down. He had the holster set up in the chest position, so he could draw it while wearing a parachute, and not lose it when it opened.

          • “The Stranger”

            Do you have a pic of your dad’s pistola….?

        • carlcasino

          Worked for a guy in the early 50’s that had a nickel or chrome plated 1911 that rattled like a model “T” when you shook it. The owner said that was designed into the gun to prevent misfires and hitting anything over 25 yards away. He kept it under the cash register and I witnessed an act of total bravery of stupidity depending on your POV. He was held up using his own 45 and within arms reach and he jammed the receiver, twisted the gun out of the robbers hand breaking his finger in several places and gave him a whipping with it. Luckily the other adult in the room stopped the whipping before it got beyond 25 or 30 stitches.

          • ChiefBoring

            You can push one out of battery if you don’t mind possibly getting shot in the hand! At an AF range once, using a really old 1911, the sear broke on me. Amazing what a rate of fire they have on full auto! I ended up shooting holes in the sky! Very invigorating…

    • john200

      I’m not really into 1911s but SIG RULES!!!!

      Cool story bro!

      • Navy Davy

        John 200 – NAH, I researched Sigs a few times, and for the caliber they always turned out to be too big, too heavy, and too pricey.

    • Erik B

      I get it. I have nothing against 1911s, I was just trying to say I don’t own one (but surely wouldn’t mind if gun laws here let me) and if I could get some help identifying this 1911.

      I do own 2 Glocks however. And a Tanfoglio.

    • ProLiberty82

      Totally agree, and I’m not even really into 1911’s! No wait.. I mean.. erm…

  • michael franklin

    ….and how exactly do we know it’s not a fake, there are a lot of them.

  • Don Ward

    I would be curious to see what the actual provenance of this weapon is and how much your friend paid for his new purchase? How do we know that it came from a flier that was shot down over Germany in World War 2? And while Ava Gardner was an attractive lady, how do we know that the “sweetheart grips” are authentic?

    Something about this doesn’t smell right.

    • Don Ward

      I see the TFB post has now been updated to show that the grips are indeed fake. Very good. Now one has to wonder about the provenance of the rest of the story.

      • Erik B

        I did update the post, but only a clarification. The comment about the grips being updated was there from the beginning.

        The grips aren’t “fake”, the original ones didn’t come with the gun or most likely burnt in the fire.

      • Erik B

        You seem to be an expert. I’d be happy to share some more pictures to see what you say.

    • Erik B

      Buy the gun, not the story? Up to you. Part II will have more information.

      As for the grips – they have been added after the purchase. So they’re “authentic”, but not from WW2 obviously.

    • jcitizen

      I zoomed in real close and the US Property stamping does not look fake, although I’d have to get mine out and see if it is placed right.

  • Jeff Heeszel

    Not ESPECIALLY into 1911s , not “specially”. Sorry I couldn’t help myself.

    • Veteran Gunsmith at large

      es·pe·cial·ly
      iˈspeSHəlē/Submit
      adverb
      1.
      used to single out one person, thing, or situation over all others.
      “he despised them all, especially Sylvester”
      synonyms: mainly, mostly, chiefly, principally, largely; More
      2.
      to a great extent; very much.
      “he didn’t especially like dancing”
      synonyms: exceptionally, particularly, specially, very, extremely, singularly, strikingly, distinctly, unusually, extraordinarily, uncommonly, uniquely, remarkably, outstandingly, really…

      Jeff, you are absolutely correct. Unfortunately, a lot of people today don’t know proper English when they see or hear it. Computers, (as in the case of Spell-Check), and common usage, (or more accurately misuse), have damaged the language.

      • FarmerB

        If you are saying especially is an adverb, i suppose that makes ‘Into’ to be the verb?
        🙂

    • Erik B

      Sorry, english is not my first language but I take note. Will probably forget and make the same mistake again, I’m too old.

  • codfilet

    A 1911-that was apparently found in Germany, after a plane crash, or a bailout . No matter where it was hidden or found, If this just recently surfaced, how did a handgun in what looks like fireable condition get from Germany to a collector in the US? This “story” has holes big enough to fly a B-17 through….

    • Erik B

      Why do you assume this 1911 is in the USA? It is not and it was never mentioned. This 1911 is in Europe.

      You are correct in assuming the gun is fireable.

    • Tassiebush

      It’s not in the US. It’s in Germany.

    • Kill Quint: Volume 1

      Not at all.

      There are numerous videos on YouTube where people have visited documented WWII battlefields with metal detectors and shovels, and have recovered a LOT of guns, ammo boxes, ammo, tank & personnel carrier parts, field gear, etc.

      Granted, most of this stuff is in very rough to trashed condition (no surprise), but occasionally, they found some items in surprisingly decent shape. No fun ‘n games BS here, folks – you WATCH in the videos as the people dig the stuff up at the time of discovery.

      Now, the FUN part is recovering this stuff & getting it OUT of the area to wherever. That’s a whole new ballgame, and depending where it was found, that could be a difficult to impossible task, and frequently illegal, depending upon the country, who owned the land, laws regulating of historical items, and so forth.

      As for the above 1911….

      I dunno. It appears that the stuff has been cleaned. Could be legit, maybe, maybe not, but it’s not impossible that it is what the author states.

      • jcitizen

        It is definitely US issue but I’d doubt that records are good enough to tell what unit it came from. I’d imagine they didn’t have as good of security and accountability as they do now – I could be wrong.

      • jackalope

        If you spent any of your childhood on a military installation, you heard the stories about “finds”. I personally lived on Quantico MCB for 3 years in my early teens. Me and my friends would go into the woods, having heard of abandoned bunkers and the like. They were out there, usually picked clean and used mostly for teenaged shenanigans. We smoked cigarettes. However, one day we stumbled across a good sized dump the had all sorts of interesting things in it. Uniform pieces, smoke grenades that had been used, ammo cans, camo nets, lots of stuff to make trouble for yourself with.

        Later on, as a soldier, I had a buddy who had grown up Army and had lived in Germany in the late 60’s/early 70’s. He had pictures of all sorts of Nazi regalia he and his friends had dug up in fields around the base.

        I’m sure there is plenty waiting to be discovered out there.

  • Ed Ward

    Wow–Quintessential example of ‘a picture speaks a thousand words.’

  • Al

    Remington Rand 1911a1, serial number 1532015 dates to 1944. Holster looks to be a M3, correct for the period.

    • Erik B

      The Colt online search engine told me 1943. Which one are you using?

    • Sam

      Correct me if I’m wrong, but the a1’s didn’t have the rounded main spring housing.

      • Gus Butts

        Yes they did.

      • Al

        The a1’s introduced the rounded mainspring housing. Previously (1911) they were flat.

  • Will

    “Sweetheart” grips.
    Very popular during WWII. The original grip, on one side, was replaced by a photo of the soldiers wife/fiancé/girlfriend then covered in plexiglas that was hand fitted.

  • Sam

    Only Nazis here are the Grammar Nazis. Please die.

    • Erik B

      Thank you Sir.

    • dltaylor51

      Probably liberal democrats to boot.

    • Proud_to_be_American

      !!!

  • SGT Dan

    Would love to know where in Germany. Often wondered what became of my great uncle’s assigned .45 after his fatal crash on 9 August 1944. 365th BS, 305th BG.

    • Erik B

      I will try to find out for you.

    • Proud_to_be_American

      Sorry for your loss.

  • Cap’n Mike

    I assume the gun was buried when the bomber crashed and dug up years later?
    The nicer Magazine was in the gun and the corroded one was in a leather pouch?
    Cool pictures and story.
    Cant wait to hear the rest of it.

  • thumpgunner

    I love 1911’s, carried one in Vietnam, own 3, including a real 1911 made in 1917, my g-father stuck it in his duffel bag after WW 1, laid there until 1997 with a mag of ammo from 1915. Works fine. CLP

    • mstrmstr

      WWI vets were allowed to take their duty weapons home

      • jcitizen

        Some WW2 vets did too, including machine guns!

        • mstrmstr

          I have to agree but I still have the guns and the letter stating that the guns are a gift from the United States in recognition of service. A pilots survival kit that included a S&W chrome revolver that was issued to the lucky ones who didn’t die and when grounded he was issued a M1903 Springfield. Both came back.. They are still in the family.

          • jcitizen

            No worries here mate! I’ve actually had the BATF try as hard as they could to register NFA weapons that I found, so they wouldn’t have to destroy them – they told me as long as they have a US serial number then everything is golden as long as the military records show up in the computer. Non NFA military weapons are not even a blip on their radar.

  • Scott

    If we new the area and approximate dates of crash, it might be possible to narrow it down.

  • Uniform223

    Too much PC in the world now. If you put that on your rifle/carbine you would get an EO complaint. I remember during my deployment I was with a small group of guys (16 including me). We decorated our day room and TOC the way we wanted it… a deployment man cave. Stacks of Maxim and FMH in the day room. A poster of some model in the TOC. When we were “reinforced” we knew we were getting females so all that had to go. I was stuck with a Major with a serious superiority complex and one day I accidentally called her “sir” (What can I say I was working directly with dudes the whole year, it was a force of habit), she blew a gasket.

    • William Taylor

      Even tho I spent a good deal of time in Viet Nam, and wound up with a healthy dose of Agent Orange, I’m glad I’m not in the service now. This gender equality thing in the combat arms is too much to handle. Just being there is bad enough without having to bother with a bunch of unnecessary PC crap. Women on submarines? Wow………… what a nightmare. Wonder how big the maternity ward will be?

    • jcitizen

      Don’t feel bad, I called the first women to graduate West Point “sir”, and even though she was forgiving, I never forgave myself! I was in school at the time and pretty rattled, still don’t feel that is and excuse for me though – I only feel this way about my common customs and courtesy. I don’t judge others.

      • ChiefBoring

        The female police captain on the cop show “Castle” insists upon being addressed as “Sir”. I have no idea why. BTW, I do have a thing for 1911s, having carried one at certain times in the Navy. Then again, I also like the Model 97 Winchester shotgun, for the same reason. Due to old hands, I am reduced to the 9mm now. I carry a Star Model BM, from the Spanish Navy. It’s a pretty close copy of the 1911, except for the lack of a grip safety. Being all steel, it weighs about 35 ounces.

        • jcitizen

          Sounds like you have the same affinity for machined steel and wood I used to for years. It still hits me occasionally.

          • ChiefBoring

            Yep! LOL. I saw an AR10 with polished walnut stock and fore end once, at least in pictures. It was a thing of beauty. Fair winds and following seas.

        • Namewithheld

          Star BM was my first pistol. Bought it at Walmart more than 30 years ago. Love that gun but it’s getting real hard to find parts and magazines for.

          • ChiefBoring

            That’s about when I bought mine, at a gun/pawn shop. It was in the original box. Try Bob’s Gun shop or Numrich Parts. Both have web sites. I found a magazine at a gun show several years ago. A man in Louisiana made me some rosewood grips in 1983. They are a little thick for my hands, but they surely are pretty! I have thought of having him thin them down some, but have lost his address. Oh, well…

    • carlcasino

      Made the same mistake with a Navy Captain while in sick bay for the flu. Every have a shot where the needle was every so gently and slowly PUSHED into your arm the full length of the 2″ needle instead of the usual quick jab utilizing only half the needle? Got my attention.

    • jackalope

      I don’t think I could have handled female officers. Of course, now they have been invited into the Infantry. Too bad, that.

      • Uniform223

        For anyone who thinks/believes woman should be in Special Forces or infantry units.; they should listen to these guys.

        It is one thing to be attached, it is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT to actually be part of the group, team, detachment… whatever.

    • Outlaw

      I have no issues with women doing anything they wish to do but…… Military front line service isn’t one. Sorry that’s just me. Call me sexist if you want don’t care but women are to be protected not subjected. Many are tougher than me I am sure but I cannot understand why they want this. It’s a power trip, has to be. Nothing finer than a 1911, greatest handgun ever. JMB was the greatest firearms designer in history no contest. 1911 designed before any CAD/CAM was a glint in it’s designers eye and 105 years later it’s still the gold standard that all others hope to emulate.

  • Black Dots

    This gun and grips are 10/10: Would operate with.

  • P. Howard

    I don’t believe this pistol is legitimate as Ava Gardner, although signed as an actress in 1941, had only very minor, insignificant roles, until 1946 when she made her big breakthrough. As such, she probably would not be well known enough to appear in magazines, etc. , where her picture could be cut out for insertion in the grips. I think these pictures were used because they fit the grips and whoever did knew she was an actress from way back

    • phuzz

      Isn’t it more likely that she’d pose for cheesecake (is that the term?) photos before she was a big star, and when she still needed the exposure?

    • Vanns40

      Geez already, they said the grips were added, pay attention.

  • Kafir1911

    I am into 1911s. And into history. Thanks for sharing your find with us.

  • freewillyism

    Do not be discouraged – I think your english is wunderbar!! I was stationed in Germany (Spangdahlem Flugplatz) for 7 1/2 years and understand.
    As for this wonderful history artifact..WOW.
    tschuss!

  • freewillyism

    The grips are probably IVORY..which adds a lot to the value.

  • Old Vet

    Relics are still being dug up from WWI so this is no stretch. WWII crashed of aircraft sometimes partially buried the wreckage. A pilot’s remains was found a few years ago in a debris field dug up by a farmer. As far as the condition of the mags, one was probably in the pistol and one may have been in a canvas mag holder. It would most likely has deteriorated causing that one to rust much more. I saw a rifle from WWI a few months ago and it was in surprisingly good condition for it’s age, not serviceable, but still intact. It had been buried in a trench in France. The GI’s loved their Hollywood pinups too, not like the bimbo’s of today.

  • Steven

    Please change to the appropriate grips and do not dishonor the service person who had this trophy.

    • maodeedee

      How do you know that the service person who had this trophy didn’t add the grips? Those grips are part of the gun’s history. Let’s not be tempted to engage in historical revisionism.

  • eddyjames

    FYI it is not a 1911, It is however a 1911A1

  • Dave Welch

    I think they are called “Sweet Heart” Grips and were made from clear plastics the crews got from damaged aircraft… in that article it was mentioned that the clear grip was not installed on the other side because you could see how many rounds, if any, remained.

  • GKPrice

    “good grammar” or not it appears that there are some here who fail to read an entire article before “going off’ on the poster – it was stated right there is black & white that the grips had been changed out but no, not so lucky – same as craigslist every day …..

  • disqus_PDmXLtTxJj

    Belongs in a museum.

  • Rev. Thos. Fowler

    Fascinating…had an Uncle shot down over Hungary by German troops…he was a good shot with his .45, according to a buddy, who survived. July 30, over Duna Airport, Budapest…B-24, “OUR BELLE”.

    • Rev. Thos. Fowler

      About 60,000 American crewmen shot down over Europe…lots of .45’s went down with them. Entirely plausible that this gentleman came upon a hidden pistol.

  • ski

    What is more important than the price is the identity of who was issued it and did he survive?

  • Jeremy Smith

    My grandfather was a belly gunner and was shot down over there. Was POW/MIA for 27 days. He was a good man. Been gone a while now. Seeing this pistol, hearing the story, makes me wonder. There were quite a few shot down over there. But, it would be a cool story. Awesome find.

  • HAHA73

    Oh I just love cookies!

  • “The Stranger”

    Sweet..if you ever get it out…make sure you take a pic of it…