Approximately 17,500 Colt Government Model pistols were reportedly shipped to Britain from May 1912 to April 1919, with a large portion of them being acquired by the British government for use during World War I. This pistol was part of a 200 pistol shipment to London Armoury Co. on 6 January 1917. The left side of the slide is marked with the two-line, two-block address and patent markings, with the Rampant Colt behind the serrations. It is a Colt Government Model outfitted with a .455 barrel stamped "M" on the left of the lug and "5" underneath, a set of crossed pennant and broad arrow military stamps on the left of the frame and slide, "crown/66/E/VP" and "X" markings on the left side of the trigger guard, "COLT AUTOMATIC/CALIBRE 455" on the right of the slide, along with the standard commercial markings and the special "W" prefix serial number on the right of the frame. It is fitted with fixed blade and notch sights, with a long smooth trigger, wide checkered hammer, short grip safety, checkered grips, a two-tone magazine with "CAL. 455/ELEY" and a lanyard base, and the proper "shelf" for the .455 case rim in the chamber hood of the barrel. Provenance: The Milan J. Turk Collection
Exceptionally fine, retains 85% plus of the original blue finish, the slide showing a slight plum tone, and the balance having thinned to a smooth grey patina, primarily on edges and high spots, and a takedown mark on the left of the frame. The grips are very fine with some mild wear on the lower right edge, minimal handling marks, and otherwise crisp checkering. Mechanically excellent.