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    Senior Member old tanker's Avatar
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    Railway Mail Service

    A bit of history, from the days when the Railway Mail Service issued each mail clerk in the car a revolver. A Post Office marked Colt Bankers Special, .38 Colt New Police. The Army inspected them at Springfield before transferring them to the US Post Office. You can see the acceptance stamp on the trigger guard made by Maj. Henbert 0'Leary. Back when the Postmaster General was a cabinet level official and mail carriers and clerks were all armed to the teeth.




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    Really Senior Member RCS's Avatar
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    Post Office Handguns

    During the early post WW1 years the S&W and Colt Models 1917 were issued but the 38 caliber took over both for window clerks and RPO (mail train) clerks. The window clerks were suppose to fire these revolvers once a year. My small office had S&W revolvers chambered for the 38 S&W cartridge, the old Postmaster could not remember when they were turn-in and cut up.

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    Senior Member old tanker's Avatar
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    That happened after the Post Office was dissolved and turned into the Postal Service. I was told all the guns were store at a facility on the East Coast and not ordered destroyed until the mid Nineties. I have a copy of that training manual. It has a section in there where they explain how to practice with wax bullets.

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    Quote Originally Posted by old tanker View Post
    they explain how to practice with wax bullets.
    I've done that. Didn't have anyone tell me about it, thought I'd come up with a brain wave of my own. My way of making them was much harder than the way most do it, use the case as a cookie cutter and just prime and cut out bullets... Found they could tear an aluminum beer can though...no toy.
    Regards, Jim

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    Really Senior Member RCS's Avatar
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    old tanker, In the mid west US most of the revolvers were sent to the local VMF facilities (Vehicle) were they were torch cut into small pieces, I understand this was done in the early 1960's

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    Really Senior Member Salt Flat's Avatar
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    Very nice high quality Colt! With the USPS provenance - fantastic! Salt Flat

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    Good old days when lots of cash and valuables were sent by mail.

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    I seem to remember that in the early 1920's, the US Postal Dept purchased Colt 1921 Thompsons including some with the 100 round drum. These
    Thompsons were then issued to US Marines to guard the mail on trains. Later in the 1920's most of these Thompsons were returned - but some
    of these weapons and drums were with the Marines during the "Banana Wars"

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    From what I can understand, the marines were taken on board to end the mail car robberies. The mail cars carried everything then, large shipments of cash included. The clerks weren't prepared to fight so in come the USMC. When the robberies subsided and cash stopped travelling by mail car, the USMC was stood down and they simply TOOK the 1921s, as many as there were available, and went home. That's how the USMC first procured Thompson SMGs...and I'm surprised to hear that they ever gave them back... Remember this was the high time of Chesty Puller, you see a pic of him and Billy Lee and two men after blowing a rebel leader "Out of his boots" during the Moro wars carrying their 1921s.

    Caption for the photo is... First Lieutenant Lewis "Chesty" Puller (center left) and Sergeant William "Ironman" Lee (center right) and two Nicaraguan soldiers in 1931
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    Regards, Jim

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    Post Office Cashier Colt M1917 revolver



    This US Colt Model 1917 .45 acp revolver was sent to the US Post Office. The wood grip panel is marked Post Office Cashier. Some where I have the holster for it.


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