This is an excellent example of a very desirable early Colt Model 1905 Military pistol, that is accompanied with a Colt factory letter date, April 1906, validating this beautiful pistol as being shipped to the W. Bingham Company Cleveland, Ohio, in a 2 gun shipment. This was Colt's first real entry into the semi-automatic pistol field and was chambered in the new more powerful 45 ACP round. This exact model and caliber were the true forerunner to the Model 1911 series of pistol and is a center piece of any advanced Colt semi-automatic pistol collection. There were only a total of 6,100 manufactured from 1905 to 1911, with this pistol manufactured in early 1906. The left side of the slide is marked "PATENTED/APR. 20. 1897. SEPT. 9. 1902" and "COLT'S PATENT FIRE ARMS MFG. CO./HARTFORD CONN. U.S.A." with the circled Colt Rampant behind the slide serrations. The right side of the slide is marked "AUTOMATIC COLT/CALIBRE 45 RIMLESS SMOKELESS". The early three digit serial number (385) is located on the left side of the frame above the trigger guard bow. The upper left trigger guard bow bears the partial Colt "VP" triangle proof and the lower is marked with a "W" sub-inspector proof. The top of the slide has the early small, oval front sight with the later wider rear sight. It is fitted with the exposed extractor, later checkered round spur hammer with the half-cock notch and the early brass firing pin. The grips have the full checkering with a small diamond pattern area around the grip screws. This beautiful pistol has the early Colt high-polish blue finish with the Colt niter blue finish on the trigger, extractor, grip screws and magazine release. It is complete with an all blue unmarked Colt magazine and a current all blue plastic Colt storage case.
Excellent with 90% plus of the original high luster blue finish overall, edge and high spot wear overall with light wear and thinning on the front left edge of the slide and the center of the front and rear grip straps. The walnut grips are in near excellent condition with nice distinct checkering on both sides, with just a couple of minor handling marks on the right grip. The various small parts retain 90% plus of their niter blue finish. The hammer retains 85% of its original casehardening fading slightly more on the left side. This is a wonderful, very high condition, Early Colt Production Model 1905 semi-automatic pistol.
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