Manufactured in the early 2000s, this pistol was one of a small number manufactured by Kimber on contract for the U.S. government which were intended to be issued to the newly formed Marine Corps special operations unit called Detachment One. Detachment One was a pilot program started in 2003 as a program for attaching a permanent Marine Corps unit to the United States Special Operations Command. The unit was only around until 2006 when it was succeeded by United States Marine Corps Special Operations Command (MARSOC). Initially, 200 of these pistols were manufactured under contract and issued to the unit for testing. During the testing phase, the pistols didn't perform as well as they needed, leading to the initial 200 pistols being destroyed. Prior to the performance issues in testing, another 150 pistols had been ordered but not issued. After the issues in testing, these 150 pistols were offered for sale to people who had been involved with the unit. It is only these 150 pistols that are still available on the collectors market, making them a U.S. 1911 that is more rare than the ever-desirable Singer. Similar examples can be seen and discussed on pages 146 and 147 in the book "U.S. Military Automatic Pistols 1945-2012", by Scott Meadows. The pistol has the standard Kimber marking on the left of the slide and the standard address on the right of the frame. The right of the frame is also marked with the special serial number "DET1-331" as well as "U.S. MILITARY PROPERTY USMC", with the addition of an ambidextrous thumb safety. The original hanging tag is still zip-tied to the trigger guard. Includes the original case with U.S.M.C. label and label numbered to the gun. Also included with the pistol is a letter from Ken E. Hackathorn, who is a U.S. Army Special Forces small arms instructor, Gunsite instructor, NRA police firearms instructor, and an FBI certified firearms instructor, stating that he purchased this pistol along with one consecutively serialized (DET1-330) through his friend Larry Vickers, who was involved in the training of Detachment One in 2003. The letter states that the two pistols, including this one, remained new and unfired with their hanging tags still attached.
Excellent plus, retains 99% plus of the original matte black finish with only the slightest handling marks and faint evidence of slide cycling. The grips are also excellent with only the slightest handling marks and crisp checkering. Mechanically excellent. A rare opportunity to own a U.S. contract pistol that will be found in only the most extensive U.S. military pistol collections!
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