What model was Gen. Patton's .357?


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DMK
June 24, 2004, 08:48 PM
I know he carried a single action .45 Colt and a Double Action S&W .357. What model was the .357?

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Hkmp5sd
June 24, 2004, 09:13 PM
IIRC, at the time, his S&W didn't have a model number. Later on, S&W designated the same gun the Model 27.

Wildalaska
June 24, 2004, 09:18 PM
S&W Pre 27 (regsitered 357) N frame

WildtriviaboyAlaska

RWK
June 24, 2004, 09:42 PM
"Registered Magnum" (S&W pre-27, N Frame, .357 magnum), I believe.

Old Fuff
June 24, 2004, 09:56 PM
Gen. Patton's .357 was one of the original ones made by Smith & Wesson starting in 1935 and continuing until 1941. The first ones were called "registered models" because the customer could special order any barrel length between 3 1/2 inches (which Patton had) to 8 3/4 inches (later 8 3/8 inches) Blue or nickel finish (Patton's was blued), and any kind of front and rear sight blade the company had available. I believe Patton's gun had a McGivern gold-bead front with white-outlined rear blade. Patton also ordered his favorite Ivory grips for what he called his "killing gun."

Once the specifications were determined the company registered the gun to the buyer, marked it with a special registration number, and included a registration cirtificate made out with the details and the owners name.

DoubleAction
June 24, 2004, 10:15 PM
The N-Frame .357 magnum remained the flagship of Smith & Wesson for many years. They just do not make em like these anymore.
http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-5/195114/27zx.jpg
http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-5/195114/27c.jpg

DMK
June 24, 2004, 10:56 PM
DoubleAction, Nice! :cool:

I've heard that he carried the SA .45 Colt on the right hip and the .357 on the left. I assume that the .357 was a "NY reload" since the SA would take to long to reload. Did he carry it cross draw?

Hkmp5sd
June 24, 2004, 11:07 PM
http://www.pattonhq.com/societypx/photopack3.gif
http://www.pattonhq.com/societypx/portrait5.gif
http://www.pattonhq.com/societypx/photopack1.gif

DoubleAction
June 24, 2004, 11:28 PM
Very unforunate that Patton wasn't fond of the 1911.
http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-5/195114/rig01.jpg
http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-5/195114/rig02.jpg

DMK
June 25, 2004, 09:06 AM
Very unforunate that Patton wasn't fond of the 1911. I'd imagine that it was probably due to his cavalry roots, which was also probably why the SA Colt was up at bat first over the DA S&W.

I understand that it was a long uphill battle for some of the old school soldiers to take to the 1911 instead of a revolver, even after it was proven reliable in WW1.

RWK
June 25, 2004, 09:12 AM
I understand that it was a long uphill battle for some of the old school soldiers to take to the 1911 instead of a revolver, even after it was proven reliable in WW1.

Perhaps there still is.
:D

BluesBear
June 25, 2004, 10:38 AM
General Patton's S&W .357 Magnum carried serial Number 47022 and was shipped on 18 October 1935. Patton paid $60.00 for it which was a lot of money at the time.

Patton's guns are on display at the Patton Museum at Fort Knox, KY and I spent a lot of time drooling over them each year on school feld trips.

http://www.hunt101.com/img/185636.jpg

As I recall Patton's most worn leather was made for by S.D. Myers. He had them incorportate his old cavalry buckle into the belt.
He only wore both revolvers on "special occasions". He was often seen wearing the Colt by itself. I know of no photographs showing him wearing only the S&W.
There are however photos showing him behind the lines wearing a Colt .32 with 3 stars on the grip and a Colt Detective Special.


Sometime around 1970 Guns & Ammo Magazine (back when it was worth reading) had a very detailed article on Patton's guns and leather. I'd love to find that issue again.

farscott
June 25, 2004, 01:24 PM
Very unforunate that Patton wasn't fond of the 1911.There is a story that says Patton was soured on the 1911 after he performed an "action job" on one. The story says that, while his 1911 was holstered "cocked and locked", he stamped his foot and it discharged. Rather than blame the poor action work, he blamed the pistol. I am not sure if the story is true, but it sounds plausible.

Jim K
June 26, 2004, 01:11 AM
While there is little doubt that Patton was an excellent shot, he was a flamboyant leader who carried those guns mainly for show. AFAIK, he never fired either one at an enemy. (Unless the story of his firing at a strafing plane is true. If it is, he apparently did not bring the plane down.).

There is a story that at one point Omar Bradley, who was Patton's boss, was asked by a young reporter why he didn't carry a gun like Patton did. Bradley, according to the story, replied, "Son, at last morning report, I had 1,300,000 men under my command; if they can't stop the Germans, I don't think one lousy pistol is going to do much good."

Jim

gunfan
June 26, 2004, 02:23 AM
George much preferred his "registered" .357 S&W Magnum whnen it came to killing either man or beast. I the day, the Maximum Casing Pressure of the then-new .357 S&W Magnum was 46, 000 C.U.P. ! THATS a powerful revolver! I believed that he used that very same revolver to kill a mule that refused to move out of the way of the advancing American forces.

Scott

Norton
June 26, 2004, 07:47 AM
Jim Keenan,

Funny that you brought the strafing plane incident up. I just caught that scene on TV last night.

FWIW, in the movie he used a 1911 to shoot at the strafing german planes:D

Hkmp5sd
June 26, 2004, 09:53 AM
Unless the story of his firing at a strafing plane is true.
It is true up to the point they could not get out the door because it was stuck. He never jumped out the window or fired at the German aircraft.

WT
June 26, 2004, 10:57 AM
I sure wish the general who gives press conferences in Iraq would wear something like this. It's bad enough he wears a 9mm in a shoulder holster to ward off the reporters. Since he is a general he should exhibit some more class and have a nice custom pistol in a leather belt holster. I think Bianchi makes a nice general officer's rig.

Old Fuff
June 26, 2004, 11:22 AM
It should be remembered that Gen. Patton carried his famous Single Action Colt as a badge of office, rather then a practical weapon. But that said, he was a competent marksman, and if occasion demanded he could hit what he shot at.

While he didn't favor the 1911 Colt he was photographed carrying one - with ivory handles of course - in an S.D. Myers shoulder holster while he was sitting in a tank. The picture was featured on a LIFE magazine cover on July 7, 1941.

He was also occasionally photographed carrying a Colt model 1908 .380 Pocket Pistol, which during World War Two was issued to General Officers, and a Colt Detective Special (again in a Myers' holster) which appeared to be stock, and might have been issued to him.

Few other officer carried fancy handguns, but Patton after all .... was Patton. Truely one of a kind, and we were lucky to have him.

Quantrill
June 26, 2004, 12:01 PM
Blues Bear,
While I can make out the famous initials on the .357, I cannot quite identify the engraving on the SAA in the picture that you posted. Does anyone know what it is? Thanks, Quantrill

thatguy
June 26, 2004, 03:38 PM
I think the initials are GSP and I thought that in the movie Scott (as Patton) fired at the German plane with the .380 Colt he carried tucked in his waistband.

HankB
June 28, 2004, 02:25 PM
But that said, he was a competent marksman, and if occasion demanded he could hit what he shot at. I recall reading that before WWII, a young George Patton competed in Modern Pentathlon, and lost because he put two pistol bullets through the same hole . . . and it was scored as a miss.

csmkersh
June 28, 2004, 07:44 PM
Keenan wrote:While there is little doubt that Patton was an excellent shot, he was a flamboyant leader who carried those guns mainly for show. AFAIK, he never fired either one at an enemy. (Unless the story of his firing at a strafing plane is true. If it is, he apparently did not bring the plane down.). He used his Colt SAA while with Pershing's Expeditionary Force chasing Poncho Villa. He ran it dry and was not to happy with the slow reload while still taking fire. The Pershing thing was the last calvary charge and the first use of the 1911 in battle. The airplane shooting was apparently with his general officer's gun, a 1903 Colt Pocket Pistol he often carried under his jacket.

isp2605
June 29, 2004, 12:48 AM
"a young George Patton competed in Modern Pentathlon

Tis true. When shooting military matches there's a course called the Patton Match. A real butt kicker. For pistol it involves running 2 miles in BDUs, boots, helmet, LBE, gas mask, 2 full canteens, butt pack, first aid kit and then engaging 4 targets with 32 rounds standing unsupported at 50 meters all withing 25 minutes. When I was shooting military matches the first thing you did when signing in was find out what day the Patton Match was held. It was to honor Gen Patton when he competed in the Olympics. Made you wish the silly bugger had competed in the beer drinking/chasing women contest instead. Actually, I came out better in the shooting comp than I would have the beer drinking/women chasing comp, it just wasn't near as much fun.

alamo
June 30, 2004, 03:04 PM
His son died yesterday - from the NY Times today:


Gen. George S. Patton, 80, Son of World War II Commander, Dies
By DAVID STOUT

Published: June 30, 2004


WASHINGTON, June 29 - Maj. Gen. George S. Patton, the son and namesake of the World War II armored commander and a veteran of combat in the Korean and Vietnam Wars, died on Sunday at his home in Hamilton, Mass. He was 80.

General Patton, who retired from the Army in 1980, had been in poor health for years because of complications from hip surgery and other ailments, his wife, Joanne, said.

The younger General Patton was occasionally asked whether he felt overshadowed by his father, who gained fame for his exploits in North Africa, Sicily and France and who was introduced to new generations of Americans through George C. Scott's movie portrayal. "I've never worried about it," the son said in an interview in 1977. "I've been too busy."

The younger officer was wounded in one of his three Vietnam tours and was awarded a Purple Heart. He was twice awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the second-highest decoration for bravery in combat.

George Smith Patton was in his last year at West Point when his father, George S. Patton Jr., was killed in a traffic accident in Germany in December 1945. For a time, the younger man was known as George S. Patton III, but he eventually dropped the Roman numeral, his wife said.

General Patton acknowledged that, just as his father had, he demanded a spit-and-polish look from his soldiers. And like his father, he loved history and spoke French, Joanne Patton said. He received a master's in international affairs from George Washington University.

As a colonel, he commanded the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Vietnam. As a major general in 1975, he took command of the Second Armored Division at Fort Hood, Tex. His father had led the division in North Africa.

In 1964, the younger George Patton and other relatives objected to a new biography of the World War II commander, "Ordeal and Triumph," saying it used unauthorized material from the general's wartime diaries. Some material was deleted, and the book was published.

In retirement, the general ran Green Meadows Farm in Hamilton, north of Boston.

Also surviving are three sons, George, of Hamilton; Robert, of Darien, Conn.; and Benjamin, of New York; two daughters, Mother Margaret Patton, a nun in Bethlehem, Conn., and Helen Plusczyk of Saarbr├╝cken, Germany; six grandchildren; and a great-grandson.

Bill B.
June 30, 2004, 07:38 PM
In the Mexican engagement that csmkersh metioned Patton used his .45 SA to kill two Mexicans. He notched the left grip for those two kills. I have seen those notches myself at the Patton Museum; the first pistol I had ever actually seen marked for killing someone.

256M-S
July 1, 2004, 01:06 PM
Patton called his S&W 357 his "killing gun." though it doesn't appear that he actually killed with it. If memory serves, his primary kill with the SAA 45 was General Cardenas, the chief of Los Dorados, Villa's body guards. Lovely picture of 2 bodies draped over the fender of his Dodge (?) touring car.

It's probably a matter of wordplay, but Patton in his stated view, wore the ivory stocked functional guns not for show, but as a distinctive part of dress so that he could be readily recognized by his troops. Hard for gun folks to fault even a Flag Rank officer for liking firearms and preferring to carry a personal sidearm or sidearms. The ivory was in the view of many folks of the time, a practical gunstock material that had warmth to the feel and added to the balance and handling qualities of the weapon. Very much unlike today when so many tack plastic ivory on their sidearms for nothing but show. Certainly Patton's weapons were acquired legitimately and carried honorably in service. They were probably much less an affectation than Gavin's M-1, Ridgeway's grenades, and Hank Emerson's SAA Army 45 in RVN....not to mention DugOut Doug's salty crushed barracks hat replete with shades and corncob.

Personally, I always thought the composed brace a proper touch for a fighting genera to wear weapons that he had used and carried rather than affecting a pure show rig. It's also a nice touch that with all of Patton's flair for showmanship and his tendency to wear the maximum stars on his uniform and even on the butt of his Remington and Colt pocket pistols, he wore his Sam Myers belt rig for the SAA and S&W with the old 1910 Web Belt buckle instead of the fancier General Officers belt buckle.

I think we'll not see his like in our left media world again....though some of the Flag Ranks who retired during the clintonista administration and have been returned to active duty under Bush to run his war against terrorism, certainly have more ground combat experience than any general officers since the War for Southern Rights....Their growing up amongst the Silent Professionals just shaped their approach to leadership differently.

Oscar Orum
July 2, 2004, 04:56 PM
BluesBear, Let me see I can help with "Guns and Ammo" about 1970 showing the general's rig and description thereof. I have at least 35 years of the publication and will check it for you. I seem to remember the article you speak of. A pm with mailing address would be appreciated.

tulsamal
July 4, 2004, 04:48 PM
While there is little doubt that Patton was an excellent shot, he was a flamboyant leader who carried those guns mainly for show. AFAIK, he never fired either one at an enemy. (Unless the story of his firing at a strafing plane is true. If it is, he apparently did not bring the plane down.).

There is a story that at one point Omar Bradley, who was Patton's boss, was asked by a young reporter why he didn't carry a gun like Patton did. Bradley, according to the story, replied, "Son, at last morning report, I had 1,300,000 men under my command; if they can't stop the Germans, I don't think one lousy pistol is going to do much good."

An officer (especially a senior one) doesn't carry a handgun to use against the enemy. It is a long standing tradition and based on the idea of force being behind the orders. If he ordered you to go forward and close with the enemy and you refused, he could just pull out his pistol and shoot you!

This idea is long before we had some officers who were unwilling (and even unable) to use force for discipline in some circumstances. Our military was never anything like the Soviet Union where you were just as likely to be killed from behind as by the Germans but officers DID use their sidearms in such a way on occasion. If an officer realized he was just about to have a general revolt, killing the ringleader might be just the thing to get everybody back into proper military order!

Gregg

Harve Curry
July 6, 2004, 02:38 AM
csmkersh wrote:

He used his Colt SAA while with Pershing's Expeditionary Force chasing Poncho Villa. He ran it dry and was not to happy with the slow reload while still taking fire. The Pershing thing was the last calvary charge and the first use of the 1911 in battle. The airplane shooting was apparently with his general officer's gun, a 1903 Colt Pocket Pistol he often carried under his jacket.


__________________
Sam A. Kersh
NRA Patron Member
L.E.A.A. Life Member
TSRA Life Member
GOA, JPFO, SAF
If ignorance is bliss, why aren't more people happy?

The last U.S. horse cavalry charge belongs to Col. Ed Ramsey of Orange County, California. He was orderd to hold a bridge crossing a river in the Phillipines against the japs, January 1942. His charge caught the japs off gaurd and they got to shoot alot of them from the banks of the river.
He wrote a book about it,"Lt. Ramsey's War", what a man of action he is, a true American hero.

DMK
July 6, 2004, 08:53 AM
An officer (especially a senior one) doesn't carry a handgun to use against the enemy. It is a long standing tradition and based on the idea of force being behind the orders. If he ordered you to go forward and close with the enemy and you refused, he could just pull out his pistol and shoot you!

This idea is long before we had some officers who were unwilling (and even unable) to use force for discipline in some circumstances. Our military was never anything like the Soviet Union where you were just as likely to be killed from behind as by the Germans but officers DID use their sidearms in such a way on occasion. If an officer realized he was just about to have a general revolt, killing the ringleader might be just the thing to get everybody back into proper military order!
I've often wondered if part of the reason (surely unspoken) was self defense. An unpopular officer or one who issued an order that wasn't well received may find himself in a situation where he'd be glad to have a sidearm.

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