Help checking provenance of US Navy Victory S&W.......


July 15, 2010, 08:05 PM
Hi guys, I traded for a US Navy marked S&W Victory model a few months ago,(after running the deal by you guys,of course:D) and I'm looking to pay the $50 and have Roy Jinks at S&W research the serial number and send me the paper that establishes it's history, but my Google-Fu is not up to the task.
I know I could call S&W tomorrow,but I'm in the mood to close this deal on-line right now. Any help,info,links,etc. is much appreciated......
BTW, if anyone can provide any info right now, the ser.# is V114,9**.

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Old Fuff
July 15, 2010, 10:04 PM
The information concerning historical letters of authentication from Smith & Wesson’s historian, Roy G. Jinks can be obtained from the link listed below.

In exchange for a $50.00 research fee (make any check out to Smith & Wesson, not Mr. Jinks) he will search through the company’s original records until he finds your particular revolver. He will then send you an official letter which usually includes:

A short history of the revolver model’s background.

What the barrel length, caliber/cartridge, finish and stocks were, as well as the exact date it was shipped from the factory – and to what distributor, dealer or individual – as whatever the case may be.

I'll check your serial number against Navy contracts later when I get a chance. ;)

Old Fuff
July 15, 2010, 10:36 PM
I think the revolver is genuine, but can't prove it. The Navy started to buy commercial Military & Police revolvers in 1941, and when the war started they continued the contracts. All together they bought 65,000 "Navy marked" revolvers, but some of them ended up with the OSS and DSC. Even so, they are still "Navy guns," and should you get one that can be traced to the OSS (unlikely) you'll be a rich man. ;) Roy Jinks at Smith & Wesson can confirm its background.

July 15, 2010, 10:41 PM
OSS bought a lot of Iver Johnsons well as quite a few High Standard .22 Autos.

Tough to trace though, they did not tend to Stamp 'em.

July 15, 2010, 11:00 PM
Thanks guys. I guess I'll just call S&W tomorrow and try and set this up. And Old Fuff,thanks in advance for any onfo on this piece. I imagine ol' Roy will take weeks to get back to me :D

Old Fuff
July 16, 2010, 01:19 AM
The problem here is that at the time all h--l was breaking loose, and guns that were made against certain contracts didn't always get shipped to the right source. So revolvers made for the Navy, and stamped with Navy markings, ended up with:

The U.S. Navy (of course).
The OSS (that was using the Navy as a cover) :evil:
The Defense Supply Corp. (DSC) (that was charged with supplying domestic law enforcement and defense plant security needs.)

Also some Navy marked guns were supplied against an Army contract, but still sent to the Navy... :banghead:

But then a whole lot of Army contracted guns ended up being sent to the Navy.:eek:

When you get the gun I can check out some markings, inspectors' stamps and proof marks (if there are any) and perhaps find out more. But in the end this is something only Roy Jinks can straighten out.

July 16, 2010, 02:21 AM
O.F. is right again,but this site has a good overview.

July 16, 2010, 12:11 PM
(QUOTE) "When you get the gun I can check out some markings, inspectors' stamps and proof marks (if there are any) and perhaps find out more."

Hey Old Fuff, I already have the pistol, so I can post anything you'd like to know about it. I don't think there any any proof markes or anything else, other than the normal stampings ( ser.#s, S&W logo and "made in USA" on right side, cartridge chambering on barrel).
Thanks again, all............

Old Fuff
July 16, 2010, 12:36 PM
So called "Navy/Navy" revolvers didn't have inspector's stamps or proof marks, where "Navy/Army" revolvers (Navy marked, but made under Army supervision) had the usual "P" proof mark and Army inspector's stamp on the topstrap or butt, as well as the Army's flaming bomb mark on the rear/butt.

So far as I know, the OSS guns didn’t have any extra markings, but the spooks didn’t leave us with much unclassified information about this.

DSC guns were taken from stock, and any kind of markings can be expected. Those that went to police departments or defense plants sometimes have stamped or electric pencil markings made by whoever got them.

At this point I think you have a revolver that did go to the Navy, or possibly a DSC gun that the ultimate owner didn’t mark. They later showed up on the surplus market, where true Navy guns are almost always bring-back’s.

Most if not all of the Navy-marked guns that remained in service after the Big War were reto-fitted with the new hammer block, because they were VERY sensitive about that issue.

July 16, 2010, 12:46 PM
Thanks again O.F. I just found the form on S&W's website to get Jinks to trace the history, hopefully I'll have that in the mail by Monday.
Also, how can I check to see if a hammer black had been retro-fitted to this pistol ? ( other than wacking the hammer with a 2x4 with a round in the chamber :D )

Old Fuff
July 16, 2010, 01:02 PM
To check and see if a Navy revolver has the later-style hammer block you must first obtain a battleship so that you can drop the suspect gun from a great height to the hardwood deck. :what: :D

Or you can cock the hammer and see if a large notch has been cut out of the hammer face, just under the firing pin.

Most often they will have a letter "S" hand-stamped on the butt as part of the serial number, or a small letter "S" stamped somewhere on the rear/upper area of the sideplate. Sometimes both markings are present.

July 16, 2010, 03:30 PM
Alas, our closest local battleship is the USS Alabama way down in Mobile, though I'll keep that option open :D. I had forgotten completely about the "S" marking (DOH !!!!) Thanks again.......

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