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Rarest 1911 Ever: Browning’s Original Army Prototype

by Guns & Ammo TV   |  November 22nd, 2011 15

Craig Boddington recently traveled to the John M. Browning Firearms museum to check out the two rarest 1911s ever—the original Browning Colt 1911 prototypes. Browning designed two pistols to send to the Army trials and, surprise, they passed with flying colors after over 6,000 rounds.

Get the whole story in this exclusive clip from Guns & Ammo TV.

  • Lopaka Kanaka

    John M Browing was a awesome gun designer and he hit it right on with the 1911 45AP back in 1906 with the US Army firing over 6,000 rounds of 230 ball ammo with out a hick-up. And to cool the gun dunk it in water and keep firing the 1911. I also read a test of 30,000 rounds of 230 ball ammo with the 1911 A-1 with out cleaning the gun and the only thing that was replaced was the spring that was for the slide recoil. That shows you how well this gun design was when John M Browing started in back in 1903. Thanks John M Browing for a "AWESOME" gun that I have ownered since 1963 in the US Army. I have up-graded to a Springfield 1911 A-1 stainless steel in 2010.

    • OfficerX

      First patent was 1897 according to the slide on my 1911, which is phenomenal all things considered…

  • T P Siddons

    I also own several 1911 pistols. Colt, Springfield and Para Ordinance. I truly love these pistols. Mine are spot on reliable. I shoot all of them as often as I can. I have shot many different styles and brands of .45 ACP but the 1911 is in my opinion the best.

  • BroncoBob

    I currently own four 1911s I also rencently gave my daughter A 3" Kimber to carry, witch she loves.My belief is simply this,when something comes along that is so perfect in every,that the very gun that come off the asembly line today looks likes the very same gun that's on the origenal blue prints that are on display in the John Browning museum,that should be proof enough that this is something that should be tresured.

  • Walter

    Only pistol that is it's equal is the Colt SSA.

    • mitch

      so true

  • Rojacaz

    I have owned 5 1911s. It is my favorite handgun. It just feels right. As a kid growing up on a horse farm; we had the opportunity to play cowboys ans Indians with real horses which was pure joy. When I would raise my hand as if to shoot, pointing my index finder, my thumb pointed up and the lower 3 fingers wrapped around an imaginary handle; it felt right and I sometimes feel like the 1911 is just that same extended hand sculpted this time out of steel. I've never owned one but I've heard the Browning 9 mm felt even better in one's hand than the 1911 but I find that rather hard to believe. I guess I won't know for sure until I purchase one and find out for myself.

  • Roman

    I think that hammerless 1911 was pretty sweet too!

  • Jim Bell

    as an armor in 1967 for the 6/14 artilry in pleiku s viet nam little did know what i held in my hand was a rare 1911 45 made by singer ,i my self carried a colt 1911 while the lowely stayed in the arms room ,wish i had it now.

  • Nick

    I own a Remington 1911 from wwi that was passed down to me from my grandfather. I'm not too familiar with this model. Any information would be greatly appreciated!

  • Alan

    Interesting that the swing is now back to the 1911 .45 & the EBR in 7.62 for use by the U.S. military & Allies in Afghanistan. I wonder if the Australian Army will follow suit, now that U.S. troops are to be base in Darwin.

  • justin sc

    The first is the best.

  • Fletch

    The 1911 is my favorite pistol and I own several types that are good guns. The first 1911, I carried as a side arm was as a Navy Corpsman serving with the Marine Corps. It rattled, was hopless shootting at anything beyond 30 feet but was absolutely reliable. After the service I didn't own one for a long time. I wasn't impressed with the accuracy and didn't really have a want for one. However one day when the need arose and I didn't have one, I started looking into 1911s. When I first picked up one of the new 1911s it just flowed into my hand just like my old service gun. Of all the pistols I have ever picked up the 1911 feels like it was made for my hand. I wanted a Colt but they were almost impossible to find at the time locally(I believe in supporting local merchants) so I looked at what was for sale and ended up with a Kimber Custom TLE II. I have been in awe of its accuracy.

  • USASPF2012

    I believe this weapon is the right choice for stopping power and its powerful rounds reliability and punching power.

  • Ken

    I would like to see a modern all steel version of the hammerless model. It would sell well.

    Got my first 1911 at age 15. Got another at age 18 as a Navy Corpsman in VN.

    I remember practicing with it almost every day while at FOB’s. Used it twice in the field during a total of 25 months on the ground.

    Eventually went to work in other wars and always kept a 1911. The 1911 is the best “push them off” or “sit them down when they are right on top of you” firearm around.

    The 1911 is a great pistol. The Sig 220 is just as good. The Glock, FNX and XD’s and XD-M’s all have higher .45 ACP capacity. I have them all.

    But I still find myself grabbing a 1911 when I think that trouble may be eminent.

    However, I think the .357 Sig cartridge may be a better “modern” fighting round.

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