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# 13910 -
1917 Luger With 7 Inch Barrel?
Jim, Jackson, MI
German Luger -
Serial numbers match all 297 All parts stamped 97 I see most of these WWI Lugers show 4 digit
serial numbers. However this particular long barrel has only three digits with no other numbers or
letters. Is this a very early production or something special? Thank-you
Answer: Jim, it is hard to say what you have with the information that you
provided. One unusual aspect of your Luger is the length of it's barrel. Regular German military
issue Lugers had a 4-inch barrel, the Navy model Luger had a 6 inch barrel and a two position
(100/200 meter) rear sight. The Lange Pistole 08 (German "Long Pistol Model of 1908") or Artillery
Luger was intended for use by German Army artillerymen as an early personal defense weapon. It
had an 8 inch barrel, and a 8-position tangent rear sight.
The Germans limited serial numbers for military issue Lugers to 4 digits. Serial numbers started out
at the beginning of each year with serial number 1, when serial number 9999 was reached a letter
suffix was added starting with "a" and so on all of the way through to the letter "z". If not for the
unusual barrel length of your Luger, I would guess that you have a normal P.08 manufactured early
in 1917. Marc
I inherited this musket from my Father. Could you please tell me something about it? This is not
the most interesting question that you have received I am sure, but it would mean so much to me.
Answer: Andrea- I really cannot tell you much based
on the information provided. Danzig was one of the Prussian armories, active from the Napoleonic
wars up through WW1. If the date is actually 1898, it is probably a Model 1891 Mauser
“Commission rifle”, as the MODEL 1898 did not begin production until shortly after that. We would
really need to see some photos to tell you more about this one. This could be a war trophy a family
member brought home after WW1 or WW2, but it is more likely to be something bought from
surplus dealers in the last 50 years. John Spangler
# 13871 -
Colt Pocket Mod Of Navy Percussion Revolver
Rob, Yuma, AZ
The Colt I have has ''Address Col SamL Colt New York US America'' on the barrel. The serial
number stamped into it is 4224. The cylinder has a stagecoach scene engraved into it along with
''Colt Patent 224''. It has a round barrel. Along with the pistol there is a black powder horn that
apparently had been heated and flattened out as part of its manufacture. Any information about the
pistol would be appreciated.
Answer: Rob- I think you have an
example of the Colt Pocket Model of Navy caliber percussion revolver. This is about the only one I
can think of that was .36 caliber and had the stagecoach cylinder scene. These were made circa
1863 until about 1872. The use of nickel plating started around 1868, so that seems appropriate as
well. These were five shot and made with 4.5”; 5.5” or 6.5” barrels. It sounds like a nice gun,
especially if it has some old accessories, and even better yet if there is some family history
associated with it as well. John Spangler
# 13909 -
Mod 934 Beretta?
James, Bridgeport, WV.
Mo. 934 - BREVETTATA Cal -
Cal. 9-CORTO -
3 1/2 -
GARDONE V.T. 1942 XX What can you tell me about this gun. Where could I find a clip or
magazine for it. Any and all information would be appreciated. Also what would the value of it be.
Answer: James, I don't think that Beretta made a model
934, it sounds like you have a model 1934. The model 1934 Beretta was produced from 1934 to the
late 1960's and was Italy's military weapon in WWII. Your Beretta's date of manufacture is 1942
and XX is the corresponding Fascist date (the Fascist date is a combination of the Julian date and
the Fascist calendar date which commenced in 1922). Military 1934 Berettas were stamped RE if
the issued to the army, RA if the issued to the air force and RM if the issued to the navy. The
1934 was offered commercially but most pistols were procured by the Italian military during WWII.
There is some collector interest in wartime 1934 Berettas and values will be in the $100 to $550
range depending upon condition and type of finish.
For a source to find a magazine, I recommend you check with Gun Parts Corp (the old Numrich
Arms people) at:
Gun Parts Corp has just about everything. If that doesn't work, try posting it on our free "Wanted"
Good Luck. Marc
# 13869 -
Muskets Blessed By Priest With Holy Water
Muzzleloader Or Musket -
40 1/16 -
NONE FOUND -
Behind hammer - I can barely make out Ashmore No identifying marks, thought to be British. Told it
has a copper or brass plate in stock that would be filled with holy water and a priest would bless
Answer: Robert- I have never heard any stories I
thought were credible about priests blessing guns. Blessing the soldiers, maybe, but not the
The most common rumor along this line is that the French muskets had a circular mark on the
buttstock with a small wooden plug covering a hole to be filled with holy water, then the plug
returned and everyone went off to war or something. The facts are that the plug was installed as
part of the final inspection process for acceptance by the government, with nothing to do with any
church or any denomination of clergy.
Many muzzle loaders have a hollowed out area in the stock covered with a brass plate. These are
usually called patch boxes, and were often used to keep greased patches clean and handy while
hunting. Of course you could put a spare flint, or nipple, or a chew of tobacco in there if you like.
Again, no holy water or priests involved.
However, Ashmore is probably the name of the lock maker for your musket. Ashmore supplied
locks to the trade in England and also the American market, so that part of the story is correct.
# 13908 -
FIE Miami Fl -
22 Long/ 22 Magnum -
Aprox. 6.1/2 In. -
it has a small star with PSF under it as well as some sort of cup or bowl with cross swords threw it,
on what appears to be a shield with an animal over the top of it: as well as the letters AE. says
made in Italy how much is it worth, how old is it and anything else interesting about
Answer: Jake, sorry to have to tell you bad news but there is
not much value or interesting information to tell about most FIE firearms. FIE stands for Firearms
Import Export company, they operated out of Hialeah, Florida (part of Miami) from about 1980 until
1990 when they declared bankruptcy.
You indicate that your revolver is a model P22. There is no listing for any FIE P22 models in my
reference books so my guess is that you have a Legend SAA (PL-22 SERIES) revolver. The FIE
PL-22 series of revolvers were manufactured in Brescia, Italy and discontinued in 1984. Revolvers
were available with blue finish only and cambered in both .22 LR and .22 Mag. calibers. Blue book
values for these revolvers is in the $25 to $75 range depending on condition.
# 13868 -
Danish Krag Rear Sight
8x58 Rimmed -
30 Inches -
I have a Danish Krag barreled action. On the Krag collectors sight, it shows a Danish with a peep
sight . Any idea where I can get a peep sight for this weapon?
Answer: Jim- We cannot help with a rear sight for your rifle. However, you are
welcome to post it on our free “wanted” listing. Just scroll down on the main page and you will find
it. Also, while there, see if there is anything that someone els needs that you might be able to help
with. John Spangler
# 13905 -
Colt New Service Information
Burton, Fort Worth, Texas
New Service -
4 1/2 Inches -
Has a swivel on the but plate. I can shoot 3840 cal shells. I would like to find out, by using the serial
#13259, If you could give me the date of manufacturing, and how many were
Answer: Burton, your pistol was made in 1905.
Production started in 1898 and did not end until the early 1940's. Total production was about
330,000, but over half were made for the U.S. military during World War
# 13902 -
Walter Model 1 In .32?
Jared, Pell City, AL, USA
There are three strange markings. It is a capitol ''N'' with a 5-pointed star in a circle above it. Above
it appears to be either a plus sign or another star (I do not have a magnifying glass). I am wondering
how much a gun like this might appraise for (ballpark). Also I would love to know if it was a military
issued gun. Thanks.
Answer: Jared, my reference books
indicate that the Walther Model 1 was only manufactured in .25 caliber. Walther manufactured a
Model 3 that was chambered in .32 caliber. The Model 3 looks allot like the Model 1 except that it
has a larger frame to accommodate the larger .32 caliber ammunition.
Pistols issued to the Imperial German Army before and during World War I will have a crown over N
stamp. The Walther pistol you describe was not ever accepted as standard issue for the military,
but may well have been purchased privately by an officer. In that case it will only have the standard
proof marks required by law, and no military acceptance marks.
Blue book values for Model 3 pistols range from $500 to around $3000 but it has been my
experience that they are slow sellers at anything over $700.
# 13867 -
Remington .44 Caliber New Model Army
New Army -
Five Inch -
Did Remington make a six shot percussion pistol that was used during the civil war?
Answer: John- Remington made about 122,000 .44 caliber New Model Army
percussion revolvers during the Civil War. Most were for government contracts, but some were for
civilian sales. All had 8 inch barrels. They also made a number of .36 caliber Navy Model revolvers
with shorter barrels (7 3/8” or 6 ½”). Starting about 1865 and continuing until around 1873 they
made a New Model Police revolver, first as percussion then later for cartridges. Their barrels 3.5” ;
4.5”; 5.5”; or 6.5” long. Around the same time they made a .31 caliber “pocket model” with barrels
from 3” to 4.5” long.
Thus we do not have an exact match for what you are asking about. A serial number might provide
some sort of clue, and these are usually found on the bottom of the barrel (lower the rammer to see
it) or on the left side of the grip straps, hidden by the grips. Hope that helps. John
Zi Di -
Bolt Action -
.22 Hornet -
There are German proof marks, checkering on the metal and well as the wood. Very ornate but not
custom scrolling. I think this gun was made in Germany or Austria somewhere between 1928 and
1940. Who made Zi- Di rifles and where can I learn more about them?
Answer: Phil, I was unable to find anything in my reference books about Zi Di
but a quick Google search came up with the following two links:
Hello, I believe I have an antique camel gun. It came from my father's estate a few years ago. I do
not have any documentation on it and it is not as flamboyant as many I have seen on the web.
However, it is not of my taste or flavor for decor in my home (meaning, my wife doesn't care for it.) I
have taken some pictures of it, and also was wondering what to look for to determine authenticity.
As far as makers marks. There are some but are quite worn in difficult to make out. Thank you for
any insight you would have. If authentic, what is the collectability for this long rifle and where would
I find a market? I do believe he purchased in Eureka, CA in the mid 1980's.
Answer: Nick- In the 1980s, many of the “camel guns" were still actually
authentic old guns. However, folks across the Mideast have been making "old guns" for the tourist
market for nearly 100 years, so it may not be all that old.
The main market for these seems to be gullible tourists (or military members) who buy them “in
country”, or once in the U.S. the interior decorator market. I see them at gun shows and antique
stores price at all sorts of prices from maybe $250 up to $1500, but seldom selling at any
Most dealers stay away from them because they are fragile and oddly shaped, making shipping a
real pain. These are best sold in a face to face transaction. John
# 13732 -
30-30 Savage With An Octagon Barrel
Christine, Auburn, WA
26 Inch Octagon -
Don't Know -
Solid frame, Hi Pressure Steel, marked, ''From W F Sheard, Tacoma, WA'' and Manufactured by the
Savage Arms Company, Utica, N.Y., U.S.A. Patented February 7, 1893, July 25, 1899, October 3,
1899. Also stamped 30-30. My uncle recently passed away and had this rifle in his house. I
believe it belonged to my grandfather or his dad. Can you please tell me the value. It looks used
but in fairly good condition with some dings on the wood portion. Can you recommend a place to
take it to sell it in Washington state?
Answer: Christine Savage
manufactured a bewildering variety of different models of their 1899 rifle. Because of your octagon
barrel, my guess is that you have a model 1899 B or 1899 C. Values for the B and C can very
greatly depending on condition. If your rifle is an 1899 B or C, the range will fall somewhere between
$500 and about $1200 depending on condition.
If you want to sell, I would suggest that you take it to the next local gunshow and get bids from
several dealers. Good Luck - Marc
# 13865 -
Poison Bullets In The Civil War
David, Springfield, MA
Don't Know -
I'm putting together an article on the use of poison bullets during the Civil War. I didn't believe it until
I came across a couple of incidents described in the Fremont Journal..Where the soldiers came
across them...And a doctor's report of cases where he treated soldiers injured and killed by
them...any info would be appreciated...thanks
Answer: David- I
have never seen any indication that any sort of “poison bullets” were used by either side in the Civil
During the Civil War, the vast majority of deaths were from disease, not from combat. Typhus,
scurvy, diarrhea, dysentery and venereal diseases were epidemic. Horrible sanitation practices
(latrines located upstream of drinking water, little soap or laundry), primitive medical beliefs
(bleeding, no sterilization of instruments), and poor diets (few fresh vegetables, no refrigeration of
meat, poor cleaning of kitchens) all added up to really bad odds against surviving a season’s
campaigns, even without the risk of being shot.
There is no doubt that many soldiers who were shot suffered horribly from badly infected wounds,
but no poison was necessary. Shoving an ounce of lead through a filthy wool uniform, perhaps
along with debris from a cartridge box or belt or a haversack with half rotted rations resulted in nasty
physical trauma and injected enough foreign matter and bacteria into the body to start all sorts of
infections. Someone with a gut shot was in even worse shape, as there were no antibiotics, only
whiskey applied internally or externally with about equal ineffectiveness.
Remember, the bullets of the period were often lubricated with an animal fat grease of some sort.
The actual application of poison to bullets would be difficult, as well as potentially hazardous to the
shooter as paper cartridge of the period were torn open while biting one end of the paper. There
were many different bullet designs, intended for other purposes that some people may have
erroneously decided were vehicles to carry poison. Three examples would be the Shaler sectional
bullet which resembled three tiny cones stacked on top of each other, which were really intended to
separate in flight and function as three projectiles to increase chances of hitting something. The
Williams “cleaner” bullets had a lead front with a metal disc with a stem sticking into the flat base
(similar to a thumb tack stuck into the base of a bullet). The Williams used a hard zinc material and
when fired it was supposed to scrape out the fouling from previous shots. Williams bullets were
issued (for a while) at a ratio of one per packet of 10 .58 caliber Minie balls, at least in Union
service. Another oddball bullet would be some of the early Minie style bullets with a hollow base,
but using a wooden or iron plug in the base to facilitate expansion when fired. James Burton later
proved the cup or plug did not really help much and the regular U.S. Minie balls just had the conical
cavity in the base and worked fine. Some English made ammunition may have run the blockade for
Confederate use which still had the wooden plugs.
The poison bullet story has been a recurring theme in military history, or more correctly in
propaganda pseudo-history working up a righteous indignation against the enemy for such barbaric
practices. During the Spanish-American War the Spanish were accused of using “poison bullets”
with their brass jacketeded 11mm “Reformado” cartridges that would accumulate green verdigris
crud while carried in leather cartridge boxes. During WW2 the Germans and/or Japanese were
accused of using “wooden bullets” that were “poisonous and could not be detected by X-rays” but
were actually training or ceremonial blanks with wooden bullets needed to feed properly, and would
break up harmlessly within about 20 feet.
For the best coverage of Civil War medical issues, there is a huge six volume set “The Medical and
Surgical history of the War of the Rebellion.” This is an exhaustive study of the types of wounds,
and diseases, and their treatment, and the outcomes. It is loaded with statistical information, as
well as loads of illustrations for the medical professional, but not for the squeamish or weak of
stomach. It provides information on the source of the wounds, often surprising. For example, while
there were a fair number of puncture wounds from bayonets in battle, there were also a huge number
incurred in fights over card games in camp, accidents, prisoners stuck by guards, etc. These are
available on line at the fantastic site http://www.archive.org/index.php just enter to book title and you
can read on line or download a .pdf copy.
In summary, despite wheat you may have read, or what some people may have earnestly reported
at the time, it is highly unlikely that any “poison bullets” were used in the Civil War. John
# 13896 -
Combat Masterpiece In Original Box
Glenda, Ellijay, GA
Smith & Wesson -
Combat Masterpiece -
Smith & Wesson Trademark I need to know the approximate value of this gun-it's in excellent
condition- as far as I can tell it was manufactured in 1955, in original box.
Answer: Glenda, the amount of wear makes a lot of difference and you need
someone with experience to determine how much wear there is, if the grips are original, and if the
pistol was really shipped in the box that you have. Values could be as low as $200 and has high as
Model 81-DL -
.22 S,L,&LR -
This rifle has a cartouche on the left side of the stock. It is an arched J A M with 1940 below it. It is
very clearly stamped. Was this a military marking or what. If the 81-DL started in 1941, why the
1940 cartouche. Thanks for your consideration. Clay Nicholson
Answer: Clay- The Blue Book of Gun Values indicates the Model 81-DL was
first produced in 1940, so there does not seem to be a date conflict. I am 100% positive that the
JAM/1940 is NOT a military cartouche, but rather one applied by the John A. Marlin Company.
Perhaps William S. Brophy’s definitive book “Marlin Firearms” would have more on this, but I just
cannot work up enough enthusiasm to find it and research more. John