Wow! A toughie! I re read Pate,and No mention of "blued Commandos". The frame and bbl, are definately Commando,with No stippling on the top strap,and smooth latch-BUT what about the "prancing pony" on sideplate? Pate says none,and we've recently discussed this on the forum.
Have no clue about the "U S" on grip frame. What stocks came with it? Could've been a "one of kind" that slipped by,or an old reblue by a gunsmith to make the gun look more attractive.(parkerizing is NOT popular with everyone,and this refinishing in blue or nickle was done to many S&W Victory Models.) Reblue,if it is that,looks "old",and I think many Commandos were used by civilian agencies during and after the war,so there was no large "surplus sale",as with the 1917's.
Factory letter MIGHT tell you the finish,but it will more than likely say that #1499x was shipped to DSC on such a such date. A crap shoot for over $100,IMO.
Looks legit to me. I wonder if it just a factory mistake where a Commando got into the "blue line" instead of in the "Parkerizing line." As far as the Rampant Colt on the side plate, that may be part of the reason the gun is blue. Someone special may have asked Colt to blue a Commando and make it look more like a Colt.
Does the Ordnance "bomb" show that it was stamped AFTER the blue was applied, as it would have been on a Parkerized Commando? How about the "Verified Proof" mark?
Quoted from the seller. The seller was Bob Adamek. He said he wrote a book on military guns.
"One theory I have on this Commando: The reason the US is
stamped on the right side frame under the grips is because the gun was completed (except grips) and went for final inspection. To distingush it from a commercial gun mixed in with military models commandos, they stamped US on the frame and the final inspection was done resulting in the "P" proof mark on the upper left side frame?????? I firmly beleive that this is original blue. U.S.Handguns of WWII by Charles Pate lists the finish as being a matted blue finsih rather than the polished blue. This is an exerpt from the 1945 SOD Small Arms Branch Administration Section historical report. Also the Army Ordnance historical report PSP # lists the Commando as having a "war time dull finish replacing the peace time blue. The book also states on page 162 that General Eisenhower is reported to have had one. Blued???? We'll never know."
"I just cannot see any evidence of this gun being reblued. There are no polish marks anywhere on the gun. The rampant colt on the left side of the frame is excellent as is the lettering on the top of the barrel and the letter "P" military proof mark on the left side near the hammer on the frame. I've seen many reblued guns but this one just doesn't appear to be one of those. You have to see it to beleive it. I wish you were going to the show in Louisville in September so you would become a beleiver. I don't know any other way of prooving it to you. Thanks for the inquiry though."
"I never tried to have the gun lettered because I thought I would just come back as one of xxx amount that went to a supply depot or so. I wouldn't think Colt has individual records on each Commando that was shipped."
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Serials 14994 & 14999 appear in my records as NYCPD guns.
Tell me more about the NYCPD guns. Mine falls within that s/n range. Did they leave the factory as a blued finish? What are your 'records'?
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Your partial s/n is 1499x. A review of my records for the 10 guns that could be in that range show that gun #'s 14994 & 14999 were direct shipments to NYCPD.
My observations thus far have been that all NYCPD Victory and Commando revolvers were parkerized. I have seen some that were blued after the war. In my collection I have a Victory that shipped parkerized and then, rather than re-blue, was re-parkerized by the factory in 1977.
As civilian gun production resumed after the war, most guys relegated these wartime finish guns to guarding the inside of a dresser drawer and bought a new commercial finish post war gun.
When I say 'my records' I am referring to the NYCPD gun purchase records. I have a copy of all the surviving records going back to the early 1920's. 100,000+ serial numbers!