The U.S. 1911 GI, Gallery gun edition

Photo and caption: National Firearms Museum

Photo and caption: National Firearms Museum

A common method of training is to shoot a particular model firearm chambered for a smaller cartridge. That way, you get familiar with the platform but do so with less recoil and (generally) cheaper ammo. That was the case with this Springfield Armory 1911 chambered in .22 Long Rifle. One of only 25 made, this example belonged to Major General and NRA Technical Editor Julian Hatcher.

The “U.S. Pistol, Model 1911, Gallery Practice” was designed  by J.H. Carl and developed at the Springfield Armory. It was a mixed model with a specially made Springfield slide and Colt frame. “In 1912 Springfield Armory began work on an adaptation of the .45 caliber weapon to fire .22 caliber cartridges. The object of the government experiments was to develop a gallery practice pistol that would use less expensive .22 caliber cartridges.”
u-s-pistol-model-1911-gallery-practise-2 u-s-pistol-model-1911-gallery-practise

Notes on their use by Hatcher himself:

“The pistols all functioned exceptionally well.
The accuracy compares favorably with pistols of this type previously tested at the Armory.
The following precautions should be observed in using the pistols.
The action, particularly the bolt and recoil rod, should be oiled every 200 rounds.
The action should be brushed out frequently, as residue from the powder and lubricating wax accumulates rapidly.
In loading the magazines, seven rounds only should be loaded; care being taken to see that the last cartridges lays flush with the mouth of the magazine and not down or up.
In charging the chamber, the bolt should be drawn clear to the rear and released suddenly.
The parts of the pistol are all hand made and fitted, and should not be interchanged.” – James L. Hatcher, June 26, 1919.

Springfield has two, SN# 565686 and SN# 499988 — the latter of which had its slide go mysteriously missing sometime after 1960.


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About laststandonzombieisland

Let me introduce myself. I am a bit of a conflict junkie. I am fascinated by war and warfare, assassination, personal protection and weaponry ranging from spud guns and flame throwers to thermonuclear bombs and Soviet-trained Ebola monkeys. In short, if it’s violent or a tool to create violence it is kind of my thing. I have written a few thousand articles on the dry encyclopedia side for such websites as, Univesity of Guns, Outdoor Hub, History Times, Big Game Hunter, Glock Forum, Firearms, and Combat Forums; as well as for print publications like England Expects, and Strike First Strike Fast. Several magazines such as Sea Classics, Military Historian and Collector, Mississippi Sportsman and Warship International have carried my pieces. Additionally I am on staff as a naval consultant and writer for Eye Spy Intelligence Magazine. Currently I am working on several book projects including an alternative history novel about the US-German War of 1916, and a biography of Southern gadfly and soldier of fortune Bennett Doty. My first novel, about the coming zombie apocalypse was released in 2012 by Necro Publications and can be found at as was the prequel, Chimera-44. I am currently working on book two of that series: "Pirates of the Zombie Coast." In my day job I am a contractor for the US federal government in what could best be described as the ‘Force Protection’ field. In this I am an NRA-certified firearms, and less-than-lethal combat instructor.

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