Colt Model 1911 U.S. Army



NOTE: this is an example of a previous customer restoration, and therefore the firearm is not for sale. Please browse the showroom for our current selection of restoredpre-ownedrefinished and manufactured firearms. SUBSCRIBE to our newsletter to be among the first to learn about new additions to our website.

In the late 1800s the U.S. Army wanted a new, self-loading pistol for use alongside its recently-adopted service rifles. But its existing .38 revolver was deemed insufficient in stopping attackers, as experienced during the campaign against the Moros in Philippines.

When the Army announced its interest in a new handgun firing a .45 caliber round, Colt designer John Moses Browning re-engineered his existing autoloader handgun concept to accommodate a .45″ diameter cartridge of his own design.

So determined to prove the superiority of his pistol design, Browning personally supervised the production of the gun that would be used for later-stage selection trials. The Colt 1911 pistol was formally adopted by the U.S. Army on March 29, 1911, and then by the US Navy and Marine Corps in 1913.

Here’s a striking example of a Colt Model 1911 U.S. Army from 1913, as fully restored by Turnbull Restoration. This iconic military service arm is featured in our annual restoration calendar.

History Restored:

“To get the best out of your men, they must feel that you are their real leader and must know that they can depend upon you.”

General John J. Pershing, General of the Armies

Years of Service to the United States Army: 1877–1924

Additional information

Log Number 36424





Year of Manufacture




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