Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 1409: Law Enforcement Shipped Colt 1921 Thompson Submachine Gun

Auction Date: May 14, 2022

Documented Law Enforcement Shipped Colt Model 1921 Thompson Submachine Gun, Class III/NFA C&R Fully Transferable Machine Gun

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $20,000 - $30,000

Documented Law Enforcement Shipped Colt Model 1921 Thompson Submachine Gun, Class III/NFA C&R Fully Transferable Machine Gun

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: 1921 Thompson
Type: Machine gun
Gauge: 45 ACP
Barrel: 10 1/2 inch fluted
Finish: blue
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 1384
Item Interest: Very Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 287
Class: Class III

One of the most famous submachine guns in the world, the Thompson SMG rates as one of the truly signature American weapons. While advancements in manufacturing techniques and materials would allow later designs to match or exceed the Thompson's performance, none of them have managed to do the job with the same level of style and craftsmanship. The Thompson, a product of old-school hand craftsmanship, is virtually synonymous with the Roaring 20s and the Great Depression, being found on both sides of the law during the "gangland" era of American history, and also serving on all Allied fronts of World War II, where it stood tall among its more cost-effective stamped steel substitutes. Per the records in Herigstad's "Colt Thompson Submachine Gun" (page 863), this Thompson was originally shipped as one of three on August 6th, 1932, to the Athens County Sheriff's Office in Ohio (the record notes a 1921AC configuration). The weapon itself is marked "POLICE DEPARTMENT/ATHENS/OHIO"; this transfer is not documented in Herigstad, but it's not unheard of for Thompsons to change hands between agencies. Blade front and folding Lyman rear sights, with a later production replacement finned barrel. Standard markings are present on the receiver alongside the police marking, and a matching serial number is present on the trigger housing. The internals are the proper 1921 pattern, with the wide spring and spring guide, multi-piece bolt with mobile firing pin and Blish lock, and spring steel oiler pad. Fitted with a fine pair of smooth pistol grips and a quick detach hardwood stock. Included with the gun is a commercial gun case, an Auto-Ordnance Type L 50-round drum, three total stick magazines, a brass Thompson themed belt buckle and a manual for a Model 1928 Thompson.

Rating Definition:

Fine, with 90% period refinished blue overall, showing some light wear and handling marks, along with a few hints of a copper patina on the rear of the barrel. The refinished wood is very good as lightly sanded, with a few dents and scratches overall and a small patch of filler on the right side of the rear pistol grip. Mechanically excellent. NOTE: This weapon is a National Firearms Act (NFA), fully transferable Class 3, which is registered with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, (BATFE) that is classified as a "Curios or Relic" as defined in 27 CFR, 478.11. These weapons are still subject to the provisions of 18 U.S.C. Chapter 44 and 27 CFR part 478.

Customer Product Questions

There are currently no customer product questions on this lot