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  1. #1
    Really Senior Member Frederick303's Avatar
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    USMC rifle with UNit marking

    Gents, I have what appears to be a USMC M1903, at least it has many of the features one would expect with one (light colored park, marked bolt, hatcher hole, rock island gun, 12-29 barrel date).

    I got it many years ago and in research at the time supposedlyit to be a SEABEE marked gun. The marking consists of stamped on the buttstock that shows when the action is facing out on a gun rack. The marking is 2B 116 , which I took to be 2nd Battalion, 116 rifle. I forget where I read such marked rifles were Seabee related, and cannot find any reference to it on-line now. It came back as one of the Greek return rifles, if that helps.

    Now I am wondering if this is a correct interpretation. I just looked up the 2nd construction battalion and found the following:

    "The Second Battalion was divided into the Fourth and Fifth detachment at time of commissioning In April. 1942, at Camp Allen. The Fourth detachment embarked at Norfolk and arrived at Upolu in the Samoan Islands, in May of 1942. One unit of the detachment was assigned to the Fifth Marine Defense Battalion on Funafuti, in April


    1943. In July, the rest of the Fourth detachment moved to Tutuila, also in the Samoan group. The unit that was sent to Funafuti rejoined the Fourth detachment in January 1944. The second hail of the Second Battalion, known as the Fifth detachment embarked from San Diego, Calif. and arrived at Tutuila late in April. 1942. Two months later, this unit moved to Wallis Island, where they remained for a year, then rejoined the rest of the Second Battalion at Tutuila. The entire Battalion, with the exception of 116 men, arrived at Camp Parks on March 7, 1944. The rear echelon arrived in the States one month later for decommissioning."

    So have any of the M1903 experts ever seen this kind of marking before and if so would be it be reasonable to believe it is a Seabee marked gun? I know it was not the pattern of the Navy and regular USMC to unit mark rifles, or so I have been lead to believe.

    Thanks to anyone who might know. No offense will be taken if the marking has other meaning. Trying to put everything down so when my stuff is sold off the family will know what they have.

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    Really Senior Member RCS's Avatar
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    USMC Model 1903 rifle

    It would help a lot if you could post photos of your rifle. It would really help to identity all
    the USMC features plus the unit marking on the stock.

    It would seem to me that naval 1903 stocks have more unit/ship markings than US Army stocks

    I have an early single bolt Rock Island stock with the number 4-99 stamp on the butt, I really have no idea why the location of the stamp or what it means -but would like to find out

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    Senior Member cplstevennorton's Avatar
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    We honestly don't know what they mean. We have never found anything on in the Archives, but my opinion is, it was probably something WWII or post WWII. Just because we never have found a mention of it, and our records are pretty good till 1943. And I've seen similar stamps on 03A3 and Garandicon stocks.

    I have a documented Marine 1903 to 1938 that has never every trait of a USMC rebuild, with a 9/42 Sedgley barrel. It also has a large CB 9 on the side of the buttstock like how you describe.

    The rifle was for sure sold by the Navy Yard in Philly in the 1950's. To me the CD 9 is probably a naval marking either on a recycled stock, or applied to the rifle post Marine service. I do not believe the CD 9 was applied by the Marines.

    My honest opinion it is probably Navy marking and WWII or later. But all that is a guess. I've documented a ton of these, and no rhyme or reason, or usually not even distinct patterns. Many don't seem to match up to anything. Some could be ship's names, but that is just a guess.

    I think it's all speculation right now sorry to say.

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    Really Senior Member RCS's Avatar
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    L.T.T. marking

    There is faint L.T.T. stamp near the Rock Island cartouche, not certain of the time period this stamp was used ? some think pre WW2

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    Really Senior Member Frederick303's Avatar
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    Thread Starter
    The marking I am referring to is on the rear of the stock, so if the gun was in the rack with the action facing up you could rear the marking. not on underside where the swivels lie.

    What a pain, when I got it I posted it, most likely on the Culvericon site (that is my recollection of where I used to go for such content) and that was when I was told it was likely Seabee. Made me fond of it as my grandfather was in the 76th Seabee battalion. Now I can find nothing on line as to such markings so I have doubts. Of course I did not write down everything I was told back then, and now it is lost.

    Met Col. Culver at Camp Perry when he had the Farr rifle on display for the 100th (2006 or 2007) it seems to long ago now, how time flies and how rapidly we are losing folks.

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    Member eb2151's Avatar
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    "The marking is 2B 116"
    I am led to believe the markings on the stock ,
    without actually seeing them mean:
    2nd Cav ,Troop B,Trooper rifle #116.
    Ed Byrns


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