This is a solid representative example of a U.S. Springfield Armory 1903 Mark I rifle rig that includes a rare original Mark I Pedersen Device with the following accessories; 1) a Springfield M1903 Mark I rifle (SN 1035807) 2) an original Model 1918 Mark I Pedersen Device marked on the right side "REMINGTON-BRIDGEPORT/PEDERSEN'S PAT'S PENDING" with the opposite side marked: "U.S.A. 1918-MARK I/60839". 3) one original 40-round Pedersen Device Stick magazine, 4) one extremely rare original metal scabbard to house and carry the Pedersen device 5) one carton of 200 rounds of "CAL. 30 AUTO. PISTOL BALL CARTRIDGES MODEL OF 1918" made specifically for the Pedersen Device, 6) two canvas magazine pouches, marked "R.I.A./8-19 and 9-19", 6) a canvas bolt carrier pouch marked "R.I.A./1919" (designed to carry the 1903 bolt when the Pedersen device is installed), 7) a 1910 Infantry canvass cartridge belt marked "MILLS Nov 1918" with the pucker bottom and lift the dot closures. This lot also includes a photocopy of the extensive information on the Mark I rifle and Pedersen Devices from the book "M1903 Springfield's" by Bill Brophy. The M1918 device was originally designed by John Pedersen c. 1917 as a lightweight, field expedient method to convert a standard 1903 bolt action rifle into a semi-automatic rifle by simply replacing the standard 1903 bolt with the Pedersen device and inserting one of the special 40 round magazines. This device utilized a low velocity, .30 caliber cartridge designed by Pedersen. His concept was to provide rifle-equipped infantryman with a weapon that produced a high volume of semi-automatic fire in the assault mode but retained the capability of providing long range firepower of a standard infantry rifle, by just converting it back into the bolt action configuration. The M1903 Mark I rifle had an oval ejection port in the left side of the receiver, and was fitted with a special stock modified to accommodate this ejection port. It was also fitted with a special sear/trigger and modified magazine cut-off designed for this device (all correctly installed). The Ordnance Department adopted the Pedersen Device in March 1918 and for security purposes designated it "AUTOMATIC PISTOL CALIBER 30, MODEL 1918". A total of 500,000 Pedersen Devices were eventually ordered from Remington Arms Co. About 65,000 devices had been delivered when WWI ended in November 1918. No Pedersen Devices were ever issued to troops in the field and the post-war evaluation of the Pedersen Device determined that it served no practical purpose. However, John Pedersen's concept ushered in a completely new battlefield concept of high volumes of semi-automatic rifle fire that carries on today! In April 1931, 64,873, Pedersen Devices and 60 million rounds of ammunition were destroyed with only a very small number of Pedersen Devices and magazines escaping destruction or retention by government museums. These devices, especially with all the accessories are extremely rare today. The rifle is a correct Mark I version with an original barrel dated "SA/6-18/A". It is fitted with a late production RIA bolt marked "R10", correct milled components and rear sight. The receiver is fitted with the correct Pedersen device magazine cut-off, screw, and trigger assembly. Currently it is fitted with a replacement early 1930s National Match "C" stock with a boxed "DAL" cartouche and single "P" proof, with a 1930s style handguard. Underside of stock is stamped "1310743".
Fine as arsenal refurbished, the rifle retaining 75% plus of its finish with light wear and thinning on the metal surface, with slightly more on the exposed receiver area. The later replacement C-type stock and handguard are both in fine condition as modified on the left side for ejection port.
The Pedersen device retains 95% of its original parkerized finish with the internal bolt mechanism still in the white with thinning on the exposed chamber insert. The stick magazine and metal scabbard are both in very fine condition with 75% of their original metal finish now having taken on a dark aged appearance. The 200 round sleeve and the 40 round box of ammunition are both in like new condition, with a hint of edge wear on the paper edges. The three canvas pouches and the M1910 canvas cartridge belt are in like new condition. This is one of the most complete Springfield Model 1903 Mark I Pedersen Device rifles ever offered by Rock Island Auction Company!
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