May 18, 2022 Extraordinary Firearms
Search By:
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 5/18/2022
This is a historically important Colt Model 1900 that Colt sent to Charles O'Neil on June 8th, 1900, for testing at the Naval Proving Grounds in Maryland. A Colt letter confirms shipment by serial number, and the pistol itself is discussed in depth on pgs. 37-38 of "U.S. Military Automatic Pistols, Volume 1" by Edward Scott Meadows. The gun was shipped to Admiral O'Neil on June 8th, and on June 20th the pistol was tested by Lieut. Joseph Strauss, whose report dated July 10th detailed the pistol and its operations including penetration tests at both 50 and 100 yards and accuracy tests. By July 24th, O'Neil was in communication with Colt regarding specifications of metal strength and spare parts diagrams to finalize the order. The order was eventually placed on September 5th, 1900 under Navy Requisition Order 28, for 250 pistols. Standard configuration with sight safety, half-moon front sight, right side of slide marked "AUTOMATIC COLT / CALIBRE 38 RIMLESS SMOKELESS", left side with " "BROWNING'S PATENT" / PAT'D APRIL 20, 1897" and "COLT'S PATENT FIRE ARMS MFG. CO. / HARTFORD. CONN. U.S.A." and encircled rampant Colt at rear. Early rear cocking serrations on slide. Left side of slide with serial number. 2-piece grip scales. Nickeled magazine, which appears to be the same or a similar magazine visible inserted into the gun on page 37 of Meadows. CONDITION: Very good, retaining approximately 80%+ of the factory Colt bluing, with some handling marks and visible scratches from handling and use, including the trials. Some silvering to high edges and muzzle, with some bluing flaking to brown toning on frame. Strong evidence of case colors visible on sight safety and hammer. Dust cover has a few dings on right side that do not detract. Grip straps are essentially patina with some toning and flashes of blue. Right grip scale has an expertly repaired crack, approximately 1" from top that runs through grip, horizontally. Magazine is very good with flaking of nickel and spots of oxidation, primarily to left side. Mechanically operable, bore is very good with strong rifling and some minor frosting in grooves. The opportunity to purchase a firearm that is directly verifiable as being instrumental in a military contract, let alone being the trial gun to kick off the testing, is rare and should not be passed lightly. EMW
Barrel Length
.38 Colt
FFL Status
Curio & Relic
Colt Letter
Serial Number
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $6,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium: $15,600.00
Estimate: $12,000 - $20,000
Number Bids: 9
Auction closed on Wednesday, May 18, 2022.
Email A Friend
Ask a Question
Have One To Sell

Auction Notepad


You may add/edit a note for this item or view the notepad:  

Submit    Delete     View all notepad items