Colt Forum banner
1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,775 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Few probably remember Gen. Jonathan Wainwright of WW II. As a Lt. General he was a field commander under Gen. Douglas MacArthuur in the Phillippines. As the situation got worse, Gen. MacArthur was ordered away from the Phillippines, and Gen. Wainwright was left in command. Gradually, the Japanese over ran the islands, and Wainwright had the unpleasant duty of surrendering Allied troops to the Japanese.

Gen. Wainwright was an old cavalry officer and favored a Colt Single Action Army, presumeably a .45 Colt. He carried this during the campaign. Just before the fall of American forces, Wainwright sent the revolver to Gen. MacArthur in Austrailia. But the plane carrying the pistol was forced down and crashed in the jungles. The Colt was hidden from the Japanese in a hollow tree. After Japan's surrender in Tokyo Bay, Gen. Wainwright returned to the Phillippines to accept the surrender of Japanese forces there. While there he retreived his Colt. The Colt is now at the West Point Museum so far as I know.

I have heard this story many times over the years and these are the facts as I know them.

Bob Wright
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,514 Posts
Bob,

That is the true story as I know it, as well. You can barely see in the photo of the article that it had a lanyard butt swivel. I recall it was chambered in 45 cal. and IIRC, it was 45 ACP.

It was a very nice condition Colt SAA when it went into the tree but when recovered after the few years in the jungle, it was void of it's finish and severely pitted in some areas. On the upside it's inherent value isn't really diminished as that comes
from its provenance anyway.
Jim
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
21,842 Posts
I had the pleasure to visit the West Point Museum on a couple occasions in the late 1980's and viewed that gun. At that time, the museum actually displayed it in the forks of a tree to show how it was 'saved' from Japanese capture. My recollection is that it did have nice blue and case color finish on it, but it was severely pitted in the places where the oily rag (in which it had been wrapped) did not afford it protection.
If you get to that area, the entire museum is well worth seeing.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top