Here is A Trivia Question...


February 26, 2007, 01:49 AM
to which I would like an answer if only because In do not know it , and it has always made me wonder:

In the 1941 film version of The Maltese Falcon, what type of pistol does Joel Cairo point at Sam Spade?

I am hopeful someone can give me the correct answer based upon some factual evidence as opposed to folks guessing, or someone just saying something like: "It was a Colt so and so" without any supporting factual basis.

Glenn B:)

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February 26, 2007, 02:04 AM
If Joel Cairo was played by Peter Lorree then it was a Browning .25. I am not sure of the name of it but I know this because I have one just like it.

Dr. Dickie
February 26, 2007, 06:19 AM
Is this the gun you are referring to:,%20Peter%20(I)

Looks like it could be a Colt pocket pistol:

February 26, 2007, 10:36 AM
Yep, that is the one I was asking baout.

So I guess it is a Browning .25 or a Colt. Anyone know for sure. Thanks

All the best,

February 26, 2007, 05:28 PM
Possibly a Baby Browning but I'm still unsure!

Jim K
February 26, 2007, 10:32 PM
The Baby Browning had been in production for some 10 years at the time, but was rarely seen in the US before the 1950's. The gun looks too big for a "Baby", a Colt .25 or a Browning pocket model and too small for a Colt .32, plus it does not appear to have an ejection port. This may be reaching, but I think it is a Haenel-Schmeisser, though it could be a Zehna.

(The picture is not "flipped" since "Bogie's" vest buttons are right.)


February 26, 2007, 11:28 PM
Glenn, I'm not sure either but wanted to let you know I'm here. No, I haven't made general yet.

Old Fuff
February 26, 2007, 11:40 PM
The most likely candidate would be a .25 ACP Colt model 1908 Vest Pocket Pistol. (I'll have to look at the tape again to be sure). There were plenty of these in movie prop rooms at the time.

John Browning had made an agreement with both Fabrique Nationale and Colt. F.N. made and sold Browning designed pistols in Europe and Canada. Colt covered the United States, parts of South America, and England. This marketing agreement makes it less likely that a Browning would have been available for the movie.

February 27, 2007, 02:08 AM
I know this isn't the topic but since the last guy brought it up. I have a Browning .25 and it has FN markings on it. But my great grandfather who was a Marine in WW2 got the gun as a souvenier after a firefight, (you can guess where he got it from). The holster that it has, has Japanese writing on it. Where would a Japanese soldier get that Browning from? It was made in Belgium and I am pretty sure there were Belgian soldiers in the pacific so could he have gotten it from one of them? Any thoughts?

Professor K
February 27, 2007, 02:31 AM
The Japanese soldier probably just bought it. Before WWII, you could buy handguns in Japan pretty easily, but if he was elsewhere in the world (the Philippines) he probably either bought it, or stole it, or found it. Or he could have used relatives or whatever elsewhere in the world to get it. He also could have went travelling the world and got it before he became a soldier, but I'm thinking if he had a holster with it, he probably bought it in Japan pre-war.

But yeah, my guess is he bought in Japan pre-WWII, or acquired it by the 3 above methods.

A Belgian soldier would never have a .25 as a sidearm, being a .25acp pocketgun and all. The only reason the Japanese guy probably had it was to compliment his warrior spirit and the fact that a .25 acp is better than no sidearm at all.

By the way, check out this article on Japanese gun ownership.

It's interesting, it's like as utopian as you can get, but a police state at the same time there, it's kinda wierd.

February 27, 2007, 03:20 AM
Japanese officers bought their own handguns, and "Browning" was a well respected maker.

Looks like Colt 1908 Vest Pocket to me. I see the ejection port.

February 27, 2007, 09:00 AM
I've seen the movie a million times and it seems I remember a closeup of a Colt 1980 Vest Pocket.

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