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1943 Ithaca 1911A1
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good afternoon gentlemen,
I just acquired an Ithaca 1911A1 from the son of a ww2 veteran. According to him, his dad, Lt JG Smith of the navy, carried this pistol through the pacific on board a cargo ship. The history is awesome, and I would love some more concrete evidence to support it. Can anyone look up the serial number for me? Maybe connect some dots? #1453146.

I hear anything pre 44 can be spotty at best, but any helpwould be greatly appreciated. I’m thrilled to have a WW2 1911 FINALLY!

thanks gain,
-Roy
 

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The pistol would have shipped sometime between 10 May 1944 and 24 May1944 in one of four shipments totaling 6000 pistols. All the pistols went to the west coast, three shipments of 3000 pistols to the Benica, California Ordnance Depot and one shipment of 2750 and 250 pistols to the Navy Supply Depot, Oakland, California. A high probability your pistol went to the Naval Supply Depot.
When you can, take a few pictures so we can see the pistol.
 

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1943 Ithaca 1911A1
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The pistol sat in a box for nearly 80 years with a full magazine of ‘41 and steel case ‘43 ammo in the magazine just as pictured. The back side of the holster has his name and service number. The front of the holster has a faint stencil: “FOX” with what looks like a different officers service number under it. The holster is an undated Enger-Kress.
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Good looking pistol. You should be busting with pride.
Note the Colt hammer. No big deal, Ithaca routinely used other manufacturers parts. A Colt hammer is not at all unusual for a mid 1944 Ithaca. I've seen several examples of Colt hammers at the end of the third contract and beginning of the fourth contract Ithaca's. Yours was a tail end third contract pistol.
A forum member, shooter5, has a really great talent for finding Navy information. He can probably tell you any number of things if he has a name and service number
 

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1943 Ithaca 1911A1
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The stencil on the front is:
FOX
0-2057598

the name on the back (which is the father of the gentleman I bought it from) is:

D.C. Smith
0-1312567

all I know is that he was a Lt JG and he moved Japanese POW’s off of captured islands. Any further info would be amazing!

thank you all for your assistance.This forum is legendary, and I can see why.
 

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The stencil on the front is:
FOX
0-2057598

the name on the back (which is the father of the gentleman I bought it from) is:

D.C. Smith
0-1312567

all I know is that he was a Lt JG and he moved Japanese POW’s off of captured islands. Any further info would be amazing!

thank you all for your assistance.This forum is legendary, and I can see why.
The service number's appear at first glance to be Army Officer Service (Serial) Numbers...head scratch if these guy(s) are supposed to be Navy...
A Navy officer service number would be more likely to be one less digit. With a name like 'Smith', well, only 18million other people with that name LoL. Any chance you could get a full or partial first/middle name would greatly assist matters. (And date and place of birth)
Running off on wild goose tangents...could they be Army personnel assigned to Navy duty/ship operations? Or does Navy Lt jg Smith simply swap a pack of Lucky's to a passing Army Officer for his super cool shoulder holster (which the Black Shoe Navy {ie, Cargo Transports}) does not necessarily have readily available acquisition access...?
 

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Don't shoot any of that old ammo. It is corrosive. How is the bore in the barrel? Most were shot and neglected so the corrosive salts ate them up. Its a very nice example and even better if it has the correct barrel with clean bore. I think it should have an 'F' (Flannery) barrel or 'HS' (High Standard).
 

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1943 Ithaca 1911A1
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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Thank you all for the information. Im thrilled to be learning what can be learned. I'm so used to U.S. arms being without any history associated or any chance of it being discovered.

The service number's appear at first glance to be Army Officer Service (Serial) Numbers...head scratch if these guy(s) are supposed to be Navy...
A Navy officer service number would be more likely to be one less digit. With a name like 'Smith', well, only 18million other people with that name LoL. Any chance you could get a full or partial first/middle name would greatly assist matters. (And date and place of birth)
Running off on wild goose tangents...could they be Army personnel assigned to Navy duty/ship operations? Or does Navy Lt jg Smith simply swap a pack of Lucky's to a passing Army Officer for his super cool shoulder holster (which the Black Shoe Navy {ie, Cargo Transports}) does not necessarily have readily available acquisition access...?
Very interesting! I know Lt. Smith was enlisted prior to commissioning, but that was all his son knew. He mentioned his service very little. The family didn't seem too interested in learning more either. I will reach out to him and see if he can get me his first name. He is not very communicative, so I don't hold out much hope. (It took a long while just to arrange to get what I have from him)

It is an interesting theory about the holster coming into his possession via trade with someone in the Army. Who knows! The service number under his name does appear to be in the same pen and style as his name though. Yet more mystery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Don't shoot any of that old ammo. It is corrosive. How is the bore in the barrel? Most were shot and neglected so the corrosive salts ate them up. Its a very nice example and even better if it has the correct barrel with clean bore. I think it should have an 'F' (Flannery) barrel or 'HS' (High Standard).
I definitely won't. I am putting the ammo and the magazine into a display case. It's not every day you get a ww2 arm with the ammo still in it from the war.

The pistol looks to have been carried and rarely shot. The barrel is a High Standard, and it has 85% of its finish still intact with clean sharp rifling.
 

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Nice find FlyFightWin-that helps somewhat; now, can you locate his associated Navy Service Number!?; it should be a six digit number (or, if he is older depending on when he commissioned, a five-digit) Good Luck!

Hal Copple: was your father a Navy Officer? Navy Service Number 204486 shows up on Fold3 as an officer (a WW1 to WW2 era Navy enlisted man would have a seven-digit Service number).
 
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