Colt M1911A1 file photo [21720]

Colt M1911A1 Handgun

Country of OriginUnited States
TypeHandgun
Caliber11.430 mm
Capacity7 rounds
Length219.300 mm
Barrel Length127.800 mm
Weight1.130 kg
Range20 m
Muzzle Velocity252 m/s

Contributor:

ww2dbaseIn 1923 the Springfield Armoury comenced work on an improved model of the M1911 pistol, which had been the standard American sidearm during the Great War. Standardized as the M1911A1 in 1926 the reworked weapon would go on to become the U.S. Army's standard sidearm throughout World War II and beyond. Between 1937 and 1945 over 19 million M1911A1 pistols were manufactured, not only by Colt, but also by Ithaca and Remington.

The M1911A1 was a semi-automatic with the seven round magazine in the handgrip. All the user needed to do to fire was to pull the trigger each time he wanted to fire, the next round being automatically placed in the chamber as the spent cartridge case was ejected. The M1911A1 had three safety devices; a grip safety on the handle, the safety lock, and the half cock position on the hammer. The fore sight was of the fixed blade type and the rear sight consisted of a fixed groove.

Like most weapons, it was not perfect. It was considered to be quite heavy and had a significant recoil. Nevertheless it remained in service with the U.S.Army until 1985, when, finally it was superceded by the 9 mm M9 Beretta Double-Action.

Sources: The U.S War Machine (Salamander Books 1978), US Combat-America's land based weapons (Publications International 1990). ww2dbase

Photographs

Color guard leading armored cruiser USS Pittsburgh landing party in the Bund, Shanghai, China, 1927; note Springfield M1903 rifles and M1911 pistolsNaval Aviation Cadets from the Naval Air Station at Corpus Christi at the pistol range with Colt M1911-A1 .45 caliber pistols, Corpus Christi, Texas, United States, circa 1941.US Marine Private Michael DiPoi in exercise with a war dog, Camp Lejeune, Jacksonville, North Carolina, United States, circa 1943John Basilone with a machine gun in the United States, date unknown
See all 12 photographs of Colt M1911A1 Handgun



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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anonymous says:
25 Feb 2008 07:58:56 PM

you have the length of the gun wrong.
2. Anonymous says:
15 May 2008 08:12:04 PM

HI, UPON CLEANING OUT AN OLD CLOSET TODAY, THATS WHAT I DO FOR A LIVING, CLEANOUT OLD HOUSES, I FOUND A WW2 COLT 45. THE HOUSE BELONGED TO A LT. COLONIEL FROM WW2. MY FIRST QUESTION IS, DOES KNOWING WHO THE ORIGINAL ARMY OFFICER GIVE IT ANYMORE VALUE? I KNOW OF COURSE IF IT WAS SOMEBODY VERY FAMOUS IT WOULD BUT HOW ABOUT JUST A UNFAMOUS LT COLONIEL. THERE IS A # 69 ON THE TRIGGER GUARD DOES THAT MAKE IT RARE. THE SERIAL # HAS A LARGER NO 7 FOLLOWED BY 28230 IS 7 PART OF THE SERIAL# OR IS IT SOMETHING ELSE. THA GUN SAYS UNITED STATES PROPERTY M1911A1 US ARMY. THE OTHER SIDE HAS ALL THREE PAT #S AUG. 19,1913 BEING THE LAST. THE GUN WAS MADE BY COLTS PT F.A.MFG. CO.HARTFORD , CT. USA IF THE CONDITION IS VERY NICE AND HAS BEEN KEPT WITH HIS WW2 ARMY GEAR ALL THESE YEARS. IS THERE ANYTHING RARE ABOUT THIS PIECE. DOES ANYONE KNOW IT VALUE , APRICE THAT IT WOULD REALLY SELL FOR AND NOT JUST SIT FOR 8MOS.IF ANYONE COULD HELP ME OUT I WOULD APPRECIATE IT. THANK YOU
3. Anonymous says:
11 Jul 2008 10:13:28 PM

In my experience regarding any collectible item, gun or otherwise, the information you have of the items past the more value it has. In this case I doubt that the guns previous owner means munch as you said he is not a historically significant person. However if you have the resources to collect the guns manufacturing date, service history... etc. it will have more value. As I am not a US citizen and I do not know the availability of such a weapon there, I cannot say anything about it's worth as such. However I would guess that if the weapon has a storage case, a cleaning kit etc. paraphernalia with it, the value certainly goes up and you're better off offering the gun to a WW2 enthusiast rather than a normal gun collector. To asses the value you probably need to find a reliable person who knows more, the Internet is bad resource in that sense. If you can't find anyone or otherwise want reliable information I suggest looking for books in your local library (??).
4. Parikshit Sai says:
1 Aug 2008 11:09:40 AM

I have colt M1911A1 Caliber .45 ACP, pistol number 1635244. Please tell me all about my weapon with manufacturing date.
5. Anonymous says:
2 Aug 2008 03:34:29 AM

Hi,I have a colt M1911A1 Pistol No. 1635244,.45ACP
Please send me the details about this weapon.
Manufacturing year also.
6. dave says:
26 Aug 2008 06:25:58 PM

If wants valuations/information about an M1911 or M1911A1, regardless of manufacture, contact me.

davidtraywick@hotmail.com
7. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
5 May 2009 07:26:20 PM

Serving my second tour with I Field Forces Vietnam,I was issued another M119A-1 .45 cal Colt Pistol. The first thing I did, was load a magazine, take the weapon off safty, pull the slide back and fire off seven rounds any weapon I was ever issued I checked, before I took it into battle afterward the weapon was cleaned.I always made sure all weapons were cleaned I liked the 45 Auto, when that 230 grain slug hits you, your goin down.
8. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
27 May 2009 06:10:50 PM

I made an error in my 5 may 2009 comment the Colt I was issued was the M1911A1, my first tour in South Vietnam was with the 9th. Infantry Div., the second tour was with I Field Forces Vietnam or IFFV
*********************************************
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times it was the age of wisdom ,it was the age of foolishness it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going directly to Heaven, we were all going the the other way.

From A Tail of Two Cities
By Charles Dickins
9. Anonymous says:
10 May 2010 08:17:57 PM

i need to know the value of a colt m1911a1 the s# is cp11898 can anyone help
10. Anonymous says:
29 Dec 2010 09:34:00 AM

You said the recoil was "quite significant", I think you are wrong, it had roughly the same as the Berretta that replaced it, and much more stopping power. The Gov`t .45 is more accurate as well. In my opinion it should still be in service, why fix if not broken...
11. Anonymous says:
3 Jan 2011 08:48:35 PM

Having fired both the beretta and the 1911. during the changeover back in 85:I think it was mag capacity,ambidextrous and double action for the idiots.We had one **** on the Dmz(korea 85) blow his foot off with his 1911 by accident becuase he couldnt handel the single action-enough of those incidents and a few bribes from italy...(btw the SIG p220 should have replaced)
12. Anonymous says:
27 Feb 2011 10:01:28 AM

Unbelievable M1911A1 .45 Colt (1943) never fired and still in cosmoline. Parkerized, not a blemish on it. FOR SALE 1182xxx ser. no.
13. Bert says:
10 Sep 2011 02:08:05 PM

May we get a good photo of an M1911A1 during WW2 in this article?
I know there are plenty, I have a few. But it would be nice. Thanks
14. Jim in Georgia says:
22 Apr 2012 02:50:51 PM

I was talking to my father this week. He was born in 1926 and spent 3 years in the South Pacific between 1943 and 1946. He was a US Marine and was in the island landings at Tinian, Saipan and Iwo Jima. I asked my father about his pistol and he said this, "We carried a 45, and it was deadly. I think mine was made by Colt and I think was a 1911 model. The 45 was a lot of gun. It would knock em dead. Some of the guys [his fellow marines] would hollow out the points. The hollowed out points would explode on impact and like schrapnel. It really tore a guy up. It was great pistol and we used them all the time."
15. Commenter identity confirmed Alan says:
23 Apr 2012 06:32:56 AM

Are you actually admitting that the US Marine Corps illegally made use of Dumdum bullets in deliberate contravention of the 1899 Hague Convention?
16. You know who... says:
28 Jul 2012 01:44:07 PM

When people are trying to kill you such as the murderous japanese, you do what you think will keep you alive....You are going to tell a combat veteran what he can or cannot do?.....you are the most irritating and arrogant SOB I ever had the displeasure to converse with....I dislike you immensly..
17. You know who says:
20 Feb 2013 11:34:36 AM

Alan, have you ever even fired a .45?....it DOES NOT HAVE SIGNICANT RECOIL. Coming from a Brit, comments like yours are expected...the Gov't .45 is used by IPSCC pistol shooters because of its great accuracy and LOW recoil. The 9mm was a mistake to go to, the .45 is a one shot man stopper, and the best handgun ever devised...and of course it US made...
18. Ray Thomas says:
30 Jul 2015 02:30:28 PM

I have a M 1911 A1 Us Army #2119245,made by ithaca gun co.,in ithaca ny. issued to the navy.have you have any info about this gun?
19. Anonymous says:
7 Oct 2015 11:32:07 AM

http://www.colt.com/CustomerServices/SerialNumberLookup.aspx this should help with the serial numbers it will give you a date of when it was made I only being 14 and a gun enthusiast i have done a similar thing with my Remington shotgun it gives you a pretty specific date although mine was said to be made in 1978 month day or 1988 month day. i don't own a 1911 one day i will but i think this will help if you have a different manufacturer like Remington you would search Remington 1911 serial number finder or something like that to find the link i wrote this exactly "colt m1911a1 serial number" HOPE THIS HELPS just trying to help gun enthusiasts/finders out

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Colt M1911A1 Handgun Photo Gallery
Color guard leading armored cruiser USS Pittsburgh landing party in the Bund, Shanghai, China, 1927; note Springfield M1903 rifles and M1911 pistols
See all 12 photographs of Colt M1911A1 Handgun




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