I recall a magazine article from maybe 45 years ago about the .455 Automatic Cartridge which stated that the in a pinch, the .45 ACP could be fired in the .455 caliber Govt. Model, but not vice versa. Their diameters are approx. the same, but the .455 case is slightly longer and is semi-rimmed meaning it won't fit all the way into an ACP chamber, but the extractor on the .455 pistol will hold the .45 round close enough against the breech face to allow its use in an emergency. The article did not mention functional reliability when this practice was followed, but knowing first hand how forgiving the Govt. Model Colt is, I would suspect it would work more often than not.
The information above comes from a large book published in 1920 , "Admiralty Technical History...". The copy above is a photo copy of this particular page which I made in the Library of the Royal Armouries in Leeds some years ago. I supplied it to Mr Clawson some time ago with information on the William Evans spent case catcher. The fifty seven pistols referred to above were in .45acp and were purchased from the trade, so far 10 of these have been identified as having been purchased from the Army & Navy Co-operative Stores, I have a record of the serial numbers. I am still on the hunt for the remaining 48 pistols, however as so many gun retailers records are missing I doubt I will find many of them.EVANS CASE CATCHER.jpg
In addition to the 57 pistols purchased from the trade an order was placed with Colt for X100 Government Models in .45acp. Why such a small quantity in this caliber was purchaser from Colt remains a mystery.
Last edited by AlanD; 03-12-2016 at 05:56 PM. Reason: Said 9 pistols , should be 10.
Here is a second variation of the marking of the magazine. PAT.PROV. instead of just PAT.
Interestingly the name of the owner is written inside the flap, as these outfits were supplied to the Royal Naval Air Service in August 1916 it may be possible to find out more about T.A. Dunning by posting on one of the British forums such as the Gear War Forum.
As Beesley sold these magazines and pouches privately as well as to the military - although a military marked one has yet to surface, it is not known how many were made. The Beesley records have no record of these mags/pouches unfortunately, so it is not really accurate to say that a specific quantity was made, until further evidence comes to light, which is unlikely.