Krag; What do you want to know about them?? They were introduced around 1908,when the Police Positive Special was introduced. This was a longer frame and cylinder version of the Police Positive,but made longer to accept the .38 Special and 32.20 ctgs. The 32/20 ctg. was NOT continued when Colt began civilian production again in 1946.
Standard bbls. were 4,5,and 6 inches. Grips,or stocks,were black "hard rubber up to around 1923 or so,then walnut replaced this. Somewhere around 1926 or so, the grip frame got "longer" from front to back' and the early models are harder to find grips or stocks for.
Finish was blue or nickle,with most in blue.
Taught a former co worker how to shoot the 5" 32/20 P.P. Special that her dad left her,after she went through an ugly divorce. With my 115 gr. fairly hot handloads,recoil was still light and she became adept at keeping all 6 shoots in a paper plate at 25 feet rather quickly. A grip adapter really helps control these guns,as space between the rear of trigger guard and front grip strap is very tight and can be uncomfortable.
Well, according to proofhouse.com and the BOCFA, 141xxx was made in 1916. Again, BOCFA says total production is in excess of 650,000 from serial #1, but starting with serial 331,000 the numbers were shared with Detective Specials so the serials don't allow production quantity distinction after that. There is a pretty good list of agency markings for special order guns listed and the comment is "almost without exception the caliber was 38". There is some finish/stocks, additional features and miscellaneous information in the BOCFA that I can't reproduce here. The BOCFA and probably several other Colt revolver reference books would probably be of interest to you if you could acquire or get to look at them. Others will probably provide additional info or reference suggestions. /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif
The 32/20 was a very popular cartridge many years ago. In fact,I think around 1930,or so,it was the #1 caliber for sales of reloading dies-but of course there were many 32/20 rifles.
Not counting the Colt SAA,where the 32/20 was the 4th most popular chambering(but too light a chambering for such a heavy gun-and more so in the 32/20,with less metal removed),S&W chambered their first M&Ps for it,along with the "standard" .38 Special. Colt followed suit with Army/Navy left wheelers,than the E frames after 1908.
Keeping in mind that people shot one handed,the .38 Special could kick more,and this was especially true of the M&P in round butt. The 32/20 was less of recoiler,but "loud". Paper ballistics are a little better for the old 32/20 115 gr.loads,than the .38 Specials,and this helped its popularity
Many folks owned 32/30 rifles(why,I don't know-as it is too small for deer,and destroys too much tissue for small,edible game),but its a great shooter. So.some rural cops,used the same cartridge,in both their guns,ala the 38/40 and 44/40. A deputy shot Charles "Pretty Boy" Floyd as he was escaping,in the knee with his 32.20 rifle,and put him on the ground-but the FBI agents then dispatched him at point blank range,as he lay wounded and not trying to "fight". Deputy,as an elderly man,was interviewd on TV a few years back,and was NOT happy with the FBI for doing this!
Have often wondered how many 32/20 revolvers were "blown up" by using the for "rifles only" hi speed loads in the 20's and 30's(weren't even supposed to use these in the M-73 Winchester")!!?
With "prudent" handloads,the 32/20 can be accurate and effective. And,IMO,it is fun cartridge to shoot!
Departments requiring .38 cal Police Positive Specials - St. Louis (1600 men), Kansas City, Cincinnati, Columbus. Chicago officers were required to carry either Colt's PP, PPS, Army Special, or Officer's Model.
I can find no mention of any departments requiring .32-20 caliber, maybe someone else can. I do, however, own a .32-20 PPS with flap holster that was carried by a Deputy Sheriff, so that caliber may have been used by some other rural agencies, probably where officers were allowed to choose their own sidearms.
If I remember correctly, the BOCFA has a long list of backstrap inscriptions, including PD's, under the PPS heading. HTH