1944 Ithaca M1911A1

The serial number allocation indicates it is a 1945 Ithaca 1911A1, but upon further review of Ithaca shipping records the gun is actually a 1944 production. The gun shipped on December 9th, 1944 to the Transportation officer at the Benicia Ordnance Depot,  Army Point, California along with 2600 other pistols. The barrel (stamps are not shown) is a High Standard and stamped HS on one lug and P on the other.

Ithaca started production in December of 1942 and was the only established firearms company to produce 1911A1s other than Colt. The total number of pistols produced by Ithaca was 335,466. In early 1942 & 1943 Ithaca did not have all the equipment necessary to manufacture the components so they received parts from other contractors that included 6,200 WWI receivers that Springfield had in storage. These early Colt receivers (frames) can be quickly identified by the cut-outs under the stocks. Colt also supplied many of the small parts.  Harry Howland of Ithaca designed a stamped trigger assembly that was approved by the Ordnance Department.   This stamped trigger was fabricated by the Yawman Metal Products Co. of Rochester N.Y. and became known as the Yawman Trigger.  The new trigger was adopted by all other pistol manufacturers by early 1943, except Colts who changed in April of 1944.  Changing to the stamped trigger alone reduced the cost of the 1911A1 by about 5%.   

Later in the war Ithaca also designed a serrated Grooved hammer as a cost reduction but none of the other manufacturers adopted it.  Ithaca pistols were probably the coarsest finished pistols of any 1911A1.  This seems puzzling since they were previously a manufacturer of sporting shotguns and as such they must have appreciated the importance of cosmetic appearance.  

Left profile

Right profile

FJA Acceptance mark

Hammer and rear sight

Serrated hammer

Safety and hammer profile

Stamped trigger

7 ribbed serrated mainspring housing

Serrated tapered front sight
Great big hole!
 From the T. Moore collection 

Rev 1.1