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Hello Gents, I purchased this Colt government model about a year ago and I have been unsuccessfully doing my research since to confirm its originality. First thing I did was look up the serial number C124XXX through colt’s website it says that it was made in 1920 as one of 5000 they produced that year, and it was the first model national match. Which I was very happy with considering that I really love old guns. I did take it to a local gun shop and they estimated it to have 70-75% of the original finish remaining. which I was also happy with considering that its 98 years old, and in gun dealer fashion they gave me a lowball value. I did find out that the grips/ stocks are not original but finding original grips shouldn't be that hard. As far as the rest of the pistol goes I cant seem to find the same information for identification of markings though websites, forums, and auction sites. So I am asking for your help as I am just so frustrated with internet searches yielding inconsistent information or just not finding any information at all. Any and all help with this is greatly appreciated!
 

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The information you state you got from the Colt web site sounds incorrect (about the NM part). However, a Colt factory archive letter will verify information on the shipping information for your Colt with that serial number. Keep in mind, however, a letter does NOT authenticate a pistol as being original or correct.

Not only are your stocks incorrect (WWII Keyes Fibre), but the barrel is incorrect. That barrel was manufactured by Springfield Armory. The magazine also appears to be incorrect (or worn so badly not to display the 2-tone finish it should).

75% finish rating is a little generous, IMO...but that's no big deal at this point. You already own the gun and condition rating only impacts value. So, unless you're selling or buying, condition rating doesn't matter that much.
 

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Out of curiosity I put a 1920 Government Model serial number in the Colt look-up and this came up:

Year of Manufacture
1920
Model
GOVERNMENT MODEL AND 1ST MODEL NATIONAL MATCH


If you'd like to register a serial number for warranty, you can log in or create an account, then go to the Serial Numbers section of your My Account page.


Then tried the serial number of a 1919 GM that was lettered, and the same thing came up.
 

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Ok thank you great information to know. I wasn't assuming that it was a national match pistol, and hopefully soon I will be sending out for the letter

How do you know the barrel is incorrect, or should i ask what should I look for to find a correct one? I included a few more photos of the Magazine

I purchased it to keep it, I have always wanted an old colt and it looks really good sitting next to my Winchester Model 1897 trench gun. I am mainly curious to see if i paid to much for it, and if i were to have to sell it what its worth in its current condition?
 

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The markings on the barrel signify it was made by Springfield Armory, not Colt...and Colt never used barrels manufactured by anyone else. The barrel in your pistol was manufactured for the military, not the commercial market.

Correct Colt stocks, magazine and barrel for your pistol would probably cost in excess of $500-600. If your pistol was all correct, I'd guesstimate value to be about $1250-1500.
 

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Hello Gents, I purchased this Colt government model about a year ago and I have been unsuccessfully doing my research since to confirm its originality. First thing I did was look up the serial number C124XXX through colt’s website it says that it was made in 1920 as one of 5000 they produced that year, and it was the first model national match. Which I was very happy with considering that I really love old guns. I did take it to a local gun shop and they estimated it to have 70-75% of the original finish remaining. which I was also happy with considering that its 98 years old, and in gun dealer fashion they gave me a lowball value. I did find out that the grips/ stocks are not original but finding original grips shouldn't be that hard. As far as the rest of the pistol goes I cant seem to find the same information for identification of markings though websites, forums, and auction sites. So I am asking for your help as I am just so frustrated with internet searches yielding inconsistent information or just not finding any information at all. Any and all help with this is greatly appreciated!
cottolino,

Welcome to the Forum!

Your header "Original? Value?" prompted a original value search. Could not locate a 1920 pink sheet (not one with the catalog) in the neighborhood,---the 3 Jan 1921 pink sheet has the Government Model listed at $42.00. Now, most likely, the surviving 1920 GM Pistols vary significantly in value.

If you do decide to letter it, some believe it is important to ask COLT to add the assembly date to the Letter.? In some cases, the pistol can ship a significant amount of time later than its birth date.

Best Regards,

P.S. Your efforts may be more productive in searching for an original early survivor GM!?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks!, And again great information to know,
I"m really upset that the barrel isn't original or even from the same manufacturer. I'm not sure what to do with it now sell it to find a better one or hold on to it
 

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Shoot it. If you like it, keep it for what it is. I always keep an eye out for a better representative pistol ( or a decent value ). You can always sell it later.
 

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Thanks!, And again great information to know,
I"m really upset that the barrel isn't original or even from the same manufacturer. I'm not sure what to do with it now sell it to find a better one or hold on to it
I think it's way too easy to get wrapped around the axle on things like this.

If you aren't a collector whose only objective is to find that one-in-a-lifetime perfect example, then keep it and cherish it. People who live a long and full life all collect some baggage and physical issues along the way - these old pistols are the same way. It's just part of that Colt's 100 years of life.

I'm not a collector myself, but I'd suspect that there are a whole lot more 1911's like yours out there than there are perfect, untouched specimens. It's important to remember that for the greatest part of its existence, that gun was considered a tool rather than a historical artifact. Just like SAA's that got used to bang a fence staple back in once in a while, no one ever thought twice about replacing a barrel or a magazine along the way.

I can tell you I'd be proud to own that Colt.
 
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Shoot it. If you like it, keep it for what it is. I always keep an eye out for a better representative pistol ( or a decent value ). You can always sell it later.
 

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the 3 Jan 1921 pink sheet has the Government Model listed at $42.00.
Stan, are you sure about the 1921 GM price? The (slide marked) National Match hit the streets in 1932 with a price of $40.00 while the Government Model sold for $22.00 (Mullin). Did Colt lower prices in the depression or raise prices in the roaring 20's?
 

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Stan, are you sure about the 1921 GM price? The (slide marked) National Match hit the streets in 1932 with a price of $40.00 while the Government Model sold for $22.00 (Mullin). Did Colt lower prices in the depression or raise prices in the roaring 20's?
Rick,

Yes, the price is $42.00. (Trying to get pictures of 21, 32, 33 and 41 for a range.)

Best Regards,
 

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Stan, are you sure about the 1921 GM price? The (slide marked) National Match hit the streets in 1932 with a price of $40.00 while the Government Model sold for $22.00 (Mullin). Did Colt lower prices in the depression or raise prices in the roaring 20's?
Rick,

Got some pictures for you,---hopefully they answer your price questions.?

Will start a Thread for you!

Best Regards,
 
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