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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Greetings,
I'm a new member and this is my first post to the site. I've just aquired my first 1911 and have been attempting to find out its value. For starters, it has been refinished; parkerized? and the grips are not correct. The ser.# is 447xxx which puts in the area of May to October of 1918 (heart-shaped frame grip cut-outs). However, it appears to have an earlier slide as the rampant colt appears at the rear of the slide (not circled). On the other hand, the barrel appears to be a later WWII version, as it has a C stamped in a square at the barrel lug. The barrel also has three crown stampings on it which appear to be either Brit or Canadian lend-lease marks. On the right side of the slide at the rear, and directly below it on the frame, are also crown stampings with a CP below the crowns. On the left side of the frame, above the mag release is an eagle proof S5. The three lend-lease stampings on the barrel are all crowns with cirlced letters beneath them. The first is BV, the second and third are difficult to make out, but appear to be DE and possibly NP. I purchased this as a shooter and only gave up $600 for it, but I am interested in getting a ballpark figure as to its worth, thinking that I might be able to use it in bargaining for a more historically correct piece. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. Thanks much.
Greg
 

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The crowned BV is a Birmingham View Mark (proof act of 1925 - 55)
The crowned NP is a Birmingham Nitro Proof barrel mark (proof act of 1925-55)
The CP below the crown is a London Proof House mark (proof act of 1955)
All are British proof marks. The boxed C barrel is a post WW II Colt barrel. Since it was parkerized are there any arsenal rebuild stamps on it? It's value is probably in the ballpark of what you paid for, possibly more on some markets. Do you have any pictures?:)
 

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"above the mag release is an eagle proof S5. The three lend-lease stampings on the barrel are all crowns with cirlced letters beneath them."

The eagle/S5 is a US Ordnance inspection/acceptance stamp.

The British stamps that exitwounds mentioned are commercial proofs. British law required that military arms being retired from service be proved at a commercial house prior to release onto the commercial market.

Was the pistol shipped to Britain after passage of the Lend-Lease Act of March, 1941? We may never know.
You have a very nice piece of history. Congratulations.

Recent prices that I've seen for refinished, mixed parts US .45 pistols start about $650.
JT
 

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British Proofs

The described markings are British commercial proofs. There were no Lend-Lease marks as such. When any Lend-Lease firearm was released by the British government, it had to go through either the London or Birmingham proof house for proofing before it could be sold commercially. This was true of any U.S. firearm, whether it was Lend-Lease or not. It is not unusual to find Korean war era firearms such as the M1 Rifle with British proofs, indicating that it was sold commercially in England at some time.
The Lend-Lease Colts sent to Canada did have the Canadian broad-arrow C stamped on them, but were sold by the Canadian government to a British arms merchant following WWII, shipped to England, and were commercially proofed before they could be sold.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks much for the clarifications guys. Much appreciated. As I said, I purchased it as a shooter, so I guess I'm not too disappointed. The next one will be researched when I decide to add a collectable to the collection.
Greg
 
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