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help date;smith and wesson secret service special serial# c 5020

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by lumhechati, Oct 13, 2010.

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  1. lumhechati

    lumhechati Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Please help me date a smith and wesson secret service special serial # c 5020.on left of barrel secret service special.on top of barrel has for 38 smith and wesson ctgs.inside the grips on frame has c 5020/on bottem of trigger guard?5020.it's 5 shot break open? frame and safety is on the side removable.any history,date made,and maker very helpful grip have 3 s's on them
  2. Oyeboten

    Oyeboten Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    The .38 S & W Ctg reference is to the Ammunition it uses...not to who made it.

    These were not made by Smith and Wesson, but, by by a different Company, Iver Jonson I think.

    I almost bought one a while back...very cool little Revolvers...and a little Mysterious in their way.

    If I can find my Iver Johnson Book, I will see if I can find out about it and let you know.

    Where's Old Fuff when we need 'im?
  3. Radagast
    • Contributing Member

    Radagast Moderator

    Dec 24, 2002
    Your gun was made by Iver Johnson between 1917 & 1928, under contract to Fred Biffar Co. of Chicago. It is chambered for the .38 S&W cartridge, but was not made by S&W. The safety was to a patent held by Fred Biffar Co, so you don't see it on the normal Iver Johnson production. Iver Johnson had a 'cheaper' brand, the US Revolver Co. The Secret Service Special was based on a modified US Revolver hammerless 5 shot.
  4. Jim K

    Jim K Member

    Dec 31, 2002
    Biffar used the name "Secret Service Special" and had several companies, including Meriden and Iver Johnson, make revolvers for him under that name. Probably needless to say, but none were ever used by, or purchased by, the U.S. Secret Service, or any other U.S. government agency.

    Assuming it was serial numbered in the regular IJ series, it was made in 1918.

    Value, as always, depends on condition, and we will need pictures to assess that. Value generally is not high. Unless in near new condition, they usually run about $100, but the Secret Service Special marking brings a bit more interest if the gun is otherwise in nice shape.

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