Page 302 - Auction84-Book2
P. 302

 Rare Inscribed North American Arms Produced 1911 Semi-Automatic Pistol
LOT 1590
Unique and Rare “Prototype” Model 1911 Semi-Automatic Pistol Identified to North American Arms Company Employee Ernest J. Evans
- NSN, 45 ACP cal., 5 inch round bbl., in the white finish, walnut checkered grips. This is an extremely rare and unique example of a North American
Arms Company “Prototype” Model 1911 semi-automatic pistol. In July 1918, the U.S. Government issued a contract for 500,000 M1911 pistols to the
North American Arms Co. Ltd. of Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. The North American Arms Co. leased the Ross Rifle plant to do the manufacturing, and the U.S. Government was to supply all the raw materials. However, due to wartime material shortages, they only supplied enough material to produce approximately 100 sets of prototype or tool room parts. Due to the WWI Armistice, the contract was canceled in December of 1918 with no pistols being fully completed or ever accepted by the U.S. Government. The U.S. Ordnance Salvage Board did eventually accept/reclaim this large lot of parts and assemblies as part of the contract termination settlement, and they were later disposed of. Some time later, those 100 sets of parts were assembled
into complete pistols that were uniquely marked with only a controlling serial number on the left rear section of the slide along with the factory markings also on the left side of the slide. This specific pistol is obviously a prototype
or tool-room set up example as the major components are still in the white while the smaller parts are blued, and all of them are fully machined. The
only markings are on the left side of the slide, “ERNEST J. EVANS/1-1918 - N.A.A. QUE.” The “N.A.A. QUE.” is the abbreviation for North American Arms, Quebec. Evans’ identity and association with North American Arms Company is documented on p. 220 of “U.S. Military Automatic Pistols” by Meadows and Ellis, which states “On November 1, 1918, Mr. E.J. Evans and Mr. C.R. Weber, both representing North American, attended a meeting held at the Bridgeport Ordnance District office for the purpose of resolving manufacturing differences and tolerances.”

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