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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I think most of us on the Colt Forum are probably more knowledgeable regarding many of the firearms used by the organized crime gangs and criminals during Prohibition than the average citizen is, but I discovered a very informative documentary on Youtube that I somehow missed!

It is/was put out by the History Channel, and I enjoyed watching it very much! If you decide to watch it, get your beer and popcorn all ready before you begin, because it's nearly 45 minutes in length, but I think it's worth it!

Here's the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kgCO8yUfZyA

nowinca
 

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In addition, there was a small activity of converting the 1911 to full auto by Colt, a prototype & a gunsmith in Texas who made several for the Dillinger gang. An entrepreneur in CA advertised a DIY 1911 full auto conversion kit but no examples of it have surfaced. Federal law in 1933 outlawed most civilian ownership of full autos, which put the kibosh on easy access.



I had a Colt 1905 that had once been experimented with, probably during WWI, firing full auto. When I got it, the attempt had long been abandoned & the gun was inoperative with a piece sawed out of the frame. Evidence was clear of probable F/A firing. A little roller had been installed on the bottom of the trigger, showing use & other evidence such as missing internal parts I no longer recall in detail. I restored the gun to a proper 1905.

 

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I was stationed in Cleveland, OH in the Coast Guard from 1981-85. There was a company there that made Select Fire conversions of semi-auto pistols; including 1911s. I don't have anymore information then that...its been a long time since I lived there!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I was stationed in Cleveland, OH in the Coast Guard from 1981-85. There was a company there that made Select Fire conversions of semi-auto pistols; including 1911s. I don't have anymore information then that...its been a long time since I lived there!
I think that would have had to have been an "underground" or secret operation, because to the best of my understanding (and as Robert said) full autos were banned in 1933 except for some Thomsons which required a hefty government fee for collectors to own. Like everything else, it's "all about the money" of course...if you have enough money, you can own anything...including many politicians! :cool::)
 

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I think that would have had to have been an "underground" or secret operation, because to the best of my (and as Robert said) full autos were banned in 1933 except for some Thomsons which required a hefty government fee for collectors to own. Like everything else, it's "all about the money" of course...if you have enough money, you can own anything...including many politicians! :cool::)
The NFA act of 34' taxed certain firearms including machine guns at a very high rate (for that time) of $200. It did not ban any weapons. It also applied the $200 tax to short barrel shotguns and rifles. McClure-Volkmer act banned the transfer of most machine guns to private parties in 1986, guns registered prior to the 86' act may still be transferred subject to how they were registered.
 

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Grew up watching the TV Series "The Untouchables" ( 1959-1963 )...so, after seeing what weaponry Elliot Ness battled on the mean streets of 1930's Chicago...

Circa 1922




And though not original...I just had to own one of these:


Auto Ordnance




Auto Ordnance





 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
The 07 Winchester was popular with both sides.
That's correct. My late former father-in-law worked at the State Penitentiary in Canon City, Colorado for several years as a guard, and then transferred to the Federal Penitentiary at El Reno, Oklahoma, in the 1940's as a security supervisor.

He told me that they were issued a Model 1907 -351 rifle, a Colt Commercial model 1911 pistol, and a Model 1897, 12 gauge "trench" shotgun.

He said these were the most commonly used weapons issued to most prison security personnel nationwide, at that time.

The strange thing was, many of the guards at prisons back then, were not allowed to be armed while on duty, because of the close proximity "inter-mingling" with the resident prisoner population! :bang_wall: :rolleyes: Apparently they were afraid of the convicts overpowering the guards!

I don't think I'd want to make a career of that situation! :)
 
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