Union Switch and Signal M1911

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by hstout1143, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. hstout1143

    hstout1143 Well-Known Member

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    I have inherited a Union Switch and Signal M1911 Serial #1079952. It has a "P" on the top left side of the slide in between the ejector and rear sight and one on the frame just below the clip button and "RCD" on the left side of the frame just behind the trigger, it also has something stamped behind the trigger on the right side of the frame, it looks like "TA CO SAC CA".The barrel has a "P" on the left side and "HS" on the right. It was part of my father-in-laws collection, I was wondering what the value is for insurance purposes. The magazine #'s are not matching.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  2. hstout1143

    hstout1143 Well-Known Member

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    Here are more pics.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  3. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    US&S, a manufacturer of signal equipment for the railroads received a WWII contract for 200,000 M1911A1 pistols, though it made only 55,000 before the Army decided the company's expertise could be better utilized in other areas. Because of the relative scarcity, US&S pistols are often faked, but that one is certainly correct, and the serial number is within the US&S range.

    Most US&S barrels were made by High Standard and their "HS" should be on the barrel if it is original.

    RCD was LTC Robert C. Downie, commander of the Pittsburgh Ordnance District.

    The marking on the other side is an import stamp, indicating that the gun was imported into the U.S. after 1968. ("SAC CA") is Sacramento, CA, but I don't know who "TA" is or was; maybe someone else will.

    WWII U.S. issue magazines were not numbered; a magazine with numbers is either not GI or is of the Vietnam war era.

    Unfortunately, the gun appears to be in rather poor condition, reducing its value to around $1500-2000.

    Jim
  4. TheGunClinger

    TheGunClinger Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    It has two different grips. If they are Keyes grips, one is an early style and the other late style.
  5. Goody

    Goody Member

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    Found this
    "IA CO SAC CA" (stands for Import Arms Co, Sacramento CA)
  6. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    Mismatched grips are pretty common on guns that saw service. There is little reduction in value on that basis.

    Jim
  7. TheGunClinger

    TheGunClinger Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Yeah. Mine came with different grips but TrantorUK sent me the correct ones.
  8. Hawg

    Hawg Active Member

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    That magazine is U.S. military supplied by a private contractor.
  9. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

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    Well, all M1911/A1 mags were made by private contractors except those made at Springfield Armory pre-WWI.

    Of the pistol contractors in the WWI and WWII eras, only Colt made its own magazines; those were unmarked, and Colt supplied magazines with its pistols. Magazines by other makers were usually marked. They were obtained by the government on separate contracts and supplied to the pistol manufacturers in crates.

    US GI mags were never numbered to the gun; most mags numbered to the gun are Argentine or Norwegian. Other numbers found on mags are either CAGE codes which are five characters (like 1M691) or stock numbers, or both. Those magazines date to the Vietnam war era.

    Jim
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