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 Iver Johnson Date of Manufacture
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Jgreen
Advanced Member

2501 Posts

Posted - 09/15/2007 :  10:57:23 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Top Break 38 s&w, SN 54955. Stamped M.S.P. (pretty sure that's michigan state police). Thanks!

john carr
Member

948 Posts

Posted - 09/16/2007 :  2:57:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Bill Goforth should be along and can answer your question. On my Dad's old IJ Safety Hammer Model the serial stamped on the trigger guard is 86XXX and Bill told me (if I remember correctly) it was made in 1921. This would place yours earlier. But that's just a WA guess.
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b.goforth
Member

966 Posts

Posted - 09/16/2007 :  6:59:52 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
in order to properly identify any iver johnson's arms and cycle works 'safety automatic revolver' two things are needed 1. the complete markings found on the top of the barrel rib, any markings on the left side of the barrel and any markings on the bottom of the butt. 2.serial number found n the left side of the grip frame, this is where 99% of the letter codes are found. only the second year production of the first model (1895) will have a serial number and letter code on the bottom of the butt. also it help to know the type of hammer spring (flat leaf or coil). the attached image is an illustration from my book that shows where to look for any and all marking found on the safety automatic revolver. the number 6 location is where serial numbers and letter code will be found sratting in 1897
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Jgreen
Advanced Member

2501 Posts

Posted - 09/16/2007 :  10:46:20 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for the reply - here's the info.

On the top of the barrel - "Iver Johnson's Arms & Cycle Works" and under that "-Fitchburg, Mass U.S.A.-"

On the bottom of the trigger guard "54955"

On the butt "Pat Aug 25 9(5)" (the last number is a bit worn, so I put in parentheses) and under that "Pats pending".

I also realize that the follow up is whether or not this gun can fire smokeless powder cartridges.

Gotta love the internet!
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b.goforth
Member

966 Posts

Posted - 09/17/2007 :  12:23:59 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
jgreene,
thanks for the additional information but with out the serial number and letter code found on the left side of the grip frame, number 6 in the illustration(remove grips to see). the only additional information i can give you is the single patent date aug.25.96 was used between 1911 and 1913. this is within the third model era (1909-1941).

i have no information on purchases by michigan state police but the purchase of iver johnson revolvers by small police depts is documented.

trigger guard serial number are not dependable as the correct serial number (trigger guards are interchangable within a given model and are often found to be replacements.
bill
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Jgreen
Advanced Member

2501 Posts

Posted - 09/17/2007 :  6:17:21 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I just removed the grip - the markings are "D54955". You've been very helpful, and it is greatly appreciated!
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b.goforth
Member

966 Posts

Posted - 09/18/2007 :  2:05:04 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
manufactured in 1913 should be ok with smokeless ammo.
bill
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