Jan C. Still Lugerforums banner
1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Administrator
Joined
·
15,075 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is an interesting find that I came across. A friend of mine received an e-mail and was told about a Luger, in the discussion he found out that it more than likely was a Weimar Police and he kindly put me in touch with him. Then I "tried" to give him some advice, and he offered me the Luger.

It is a 1921 DWM Commercial, there are several things about it that make me wonder, but it was seemingly "untouched" when I got it. Bore was full of years of grime and the grips had spots of rust under them, although with some freckling and spots of rust that cleaned up nicely.
Download Attachment: 1921leftsidesmaller.jpg
84.55 KB
Download Attachment: 1921date.jpg
28.44 KB,

Here are the oddities of this gun:

It seemingly is a five digit commercial, its numbering is in line with the year (1921), however, and this is something that could be a manufacturing error (?) or is it possible that the gun started as imperial parts and became a "commercial"

The serial number is marked on the left in the commercial fashion and also at the front of the trigger guard. HOWEVER, under the commercial serial number is an "a" and on the barrel it is marked with the last FOUR and a suffix "a".

The toggle pin was broken, but I am not overly worried about that, although it is a shame and it is tight unless you take it out. It did not come out easy and I believe it had not been out for many years.

It has a sear safety but no magazine safety was ever installed. The sear has been stamped with what is believed to be a repair stamping.
Download Attachment: 1921Searstamping.jpg
56.61 KB

Download Attachment: 1921Searcloseupstamping.jpg
20.56 KB

In addition to having a sear safety, it is police (unit) marked O.P.M. 274 on the front grip strap, I could not find a correlation in my book for this marking? Download Attachment: 1921UnitPoliceMarking.jpg
45.92 KB


The magazine is not matching, but is stamped as a police with the serial number and the number 1.

Download Attachment: 1921magazine1.jpg
27.68 KB


And Dwight, the witness marking is straight on and appears to be original.

Download Attachment: 1921witnessmarks.jpg
43.12 KB


Here is a close up of the left side, the sideplate looks a bit odd, possibly force matched by a police armory, it is crown B stamped, again "probably" a repair stamping.

Download Attachment: 1921leftsidecloseup1.jpg
68.34 KB


Download Attachment: 1921rightsidesmaller.jpg
77.91 KB
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,402 Posts
Ed
The lazy C/N is almost always associated with Imperial Lugers. The "a" suffix serial number, and 1921 date suggest manufacture during 1921 (Weimar Lugers, page 29). However the 83591 serial number is below the reported 1920 and 1921 dated five digit serial number Lugers (Weimar Lugers, page 27). A very interesting Luger.
Jan
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,402 Posts
Ed
The lazy C/N is almost always associated with Imperial Lugers. The "a" suffix serial number, and 1921 date suggest manufacture during 1921 (Weimar Lugers, page 29). However the 83591 serial number is below the reported 1920 and 1921 dated five digit serial number Lugers (Weimar Lugers, page 27). A very interesting Luger.
Jan
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
15,075 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Another collector shared pictures with me, his Commercial is 160+ guns older than mine, has the same 80,000 serial range, plus is marked on the barrel with four numbers AND an "a". He does not have a sear safety, but it is marked on the front grip strap with an S.Hn which I am unsure what it stands for?

So, is this a grouping of police pistols that were diverted?

Ed
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
15,075 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Another collector shared pictures with me, his Commercial is 160+ guns older than mine, has the same 80,000 serial range, plus is marked on the barrel with four numbers AND an "a". He does not have a sear safety, but it is marked on the front grip strap with an S.Hn which I am unsure what it stands for?

So, is this a grouping of police pistols that were diverted?

Ed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
727 Posts
In Auto Mag January,1997 page 243, Alan Smith reported a 1921 dated P08 with sear safety and grip strap marked O.P.M. 309, serial 83203a. In Auto Mag April 1997 page 21, I described a similar dated, sear safety matching P08 "police" rig, front grip strap marked O.P.M. 305, serial 83240a. Subsequently I have heard of another 1921 dated P08 with O.P.M. 431 mark, serial 83282a, and noted that an O.P.M. 90 marked P08 was for sale at Rock Island Auction, March 29-30,1999(or 2000). In 1997-98 I presented this OPM/alphabet quandary to Mr. R Kornmayer. He could not decipher the O.P.M. but did provide an interesting speculative explanation. I will confer with him to see if he has expanded/altered/discarded this idea or has some new information in the last 5 years. Also I will take some pictures of 83203a and attempt to enter them into THE SYSTEM.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
727 Posts
In Auto Mag January,1997 page 243, Alan Smith reported a 1921 dated P08 with sear safety and grip strap marked O.P.M. 309, serial 83203a. In Auto Mag April 1997 page 21, I described a similar dated, sear safety matching P08 "police" rig, front grip strap marked O.P.M. 305, serial 83240a. Subsequently I have heard of another 1921 dated P08 with O.P.M. 431 mark, serial 83282a, and noted that an O.P.M. 90 marked P08 was for sale at Rock Island Auction, March 29-30,1999(or 2000). In 1997-98 I presented this OPM/alphabet quandary to Mr. R Kornmayer. He could not decipher the O.P.M. but did provide an interesting speculative explanation. I will confer with him to see if he has expanded/altered/discarded this idea or has some new information in the last 5 years. Also I will take some pictures of 83203a and attempt to enter them into THE SYSTEM.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
15,075 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
John, that is really interesting, if you can get pictures, e-mail them to me and I will be glad to post them here for you!



1921 DWM “Commercial”

Serial number Grip Strap Marking Sear Safety?
unknown O.P.M. 90
83591a O.P.M. 274
83240a O.P.M. 305
83203a O.P.M. 309
83282a O.P.M. 431
83426a S.Hn

CHART Showing Info
Download Attachment: 1921Gripstrap.jpg
21.04 KB



Ed [email protected]
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,402 Posts
Ed
It would be interesting to know what proof marks and acceptance/inspection stamps that these very interesting Lugers bear.

The lazy C/N is usually found on some DWM commercial Lugers up to 1918 and some Weimar era Krieghoff reworks and Krieghoff sold DWM Lugers. I am looking forward to seeing more information and photographs.

The Basel Police Lugers are found in the 75441 to 76049 serial range. They are consideres transitional between the 1914 DWM Commercial and The Weimar 5 digit serial number Luger. They were purchased by the Basel Police in 1921, bear a 9mm barrel and a lazy C/N proof (see Weimar Lugers page 255. Not sure what this has to do with the above Lugers but thought I would throw it in.
Jan
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
727 Posts
Here are some pictures of O.P.M.305, serial 83240a, if they made it.
The 1921 chamber top has been scrubbed (tried to show that) and also the front grip strap shows residual previous markings. The asymetrical placement of the serial number on front frame indicates a later addition of the first digit(8)to the original 3240a number. Similarly the "8" appears to have been added to the original number on the #2 wooden mag bottom,which also bears the number 305, probably the original issue number of this police P08. Mag #3, matching alu bottom, also bears sunburst S. Holster has seen little use and is Police Schambach, Berlin 1939, with matching serial number on back. Tool also stamped with matching numbers 83240.
When I asked Mr. Kornmayer about this police marking 5 years ago,he was perplexed. However he did find (in a 1941 book) that sometime after 1936 the german police were reorganized from Landjagerei/Schutzpolizei to Ordnungspolizei (abbreviated O.P.). Under this scheme, he said O.P.M. would be Ordnungs-Polizei, (Regierungsbezirk) Minden. Mr Kornmayer also found reference to the existence of SanitatsOffiziere ( medical officers)in the Ordnungspolizei. This was of interest to me because Harlan Domke bought this rig from a GI who had captured it from a German Medical Officer.

Scrub photo:
Download Attachment: left.jpg
39.31 KB

Left:
Download Attachment: 1921scrub.jpg
52.79 KB

Magazine photos:

Download Attachment: mag2.jpg
45.81 KB

Download Attachment: mag3.jpg
48 KB

Gripstrap Marking:

Download Attachment: opm grip.jpg
49.9 KB



Download Attachment: serial no.jpg
51.01 KB
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
15,075 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
THIS will be the third gun with the off-set "8" so it appears that the 8 was added after the serial number, which of course makes sense from the "a" part of the serial number...

Conjecture would lead to beleive that a batch of military guns were pulled, an "8" added to the serial number and thus transformed into commerical sales to the police?

Ed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
quote:Originally posted by jcoe

Here are some pictures of O.P.M.305...
Weimar Police & jcoe,

The German law enforcement was reorganized during 1936 into 2 main groups right after SS-Reichsheini Himmler became chief of the police.

1. The political police and the criminal investigation police under Gruppenfuehrer Heydrich.
2. The Ordnungspolizei, which was consolidated from the Schutz-polizei, Gendarmerie and the Gemeindepolizei under General of the Police Daluege.

Administration offices were established in Koenigsberg, Stettin, Berlin, Breslau, Magdeburg, Hannover, Muenster, Kiel, Kassel, Koblenz, Muenchen, Dresden, Stuttgart and Hamburg.

Note : "O.P.M." is not in the books and stands in my opinion for
either : Ordnungspolizei Muenchen, Muenster or Magdeburg

Sorry, I was unable to find a listing of Minden.

Source : ZfH. # 262 Nov/Dec 1975, page 202,
Die Ordnungspolizei im Kriegseinsatz 1939-1945 by
Heinrich Lankenau and Georg Ortenburg.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
15,075 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks Klaus, I appreciate your research.
I would imagine there are documents somewhere that display charts, such as the ones that are in Weimar Lugers for these other unknown markings, and hopefully they will show up one day.

Ed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,119 Posts
Ed, To recap some of the information so far:

From the photographs these pistols appear to have military style numbers on the sideplates and the safety bar. The serial number as it appears on the barrel seems to be consistent with 1921 military letter suffix series.

The Crown N seems inconsistent witha military proof so that seems strange. The three 1921 dated army Lugers in Still's Weimar Lugers on pages 62 trough 65 have droop eagle proofs and seem to have the sear bar serial numbered. I cannot make out if the sear bar is numbered on these 1921 "commercials"

AS Jan noted the serial numbers with the 8 added seem out of the sequence for a 1921 commercial Luger.

The sear safety alone is consistent with 1935 to 1937 Police issue or rework. Klaus indicates the OPM "Ordnungspolizei" is consistent with a 1936 Police re-organization.

It is interesting that the serial nubers of the 3 OPM marked pistols and the OPM property numbers suggest a closely manufactured group or lot of pistols. But, how do they stay together until 1936-37 when they get their sear safeties and OPM marks?

In 1921 Germany was undergoing a Communist revolt in March, large numbers of political assasinations, and Friekorp activity.

Pure speculation:
1) maybe these were a lot of Frieskorps purchased P08s stored until reissued in 1936/37 or;
2) maybe issued to a Schutz-polizei, Gendarmerie or Gemeindepolizei unit that did not mark their weapons until consolidation into an Ordnungspolizei unit.

BUT what about that 8 prefix stamping?

Fascinating
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
15,075 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Heinz,

Pure speculation (of course), my original thinking was that it was some type of mistake or thrown together gun.

But after hearing about several guns, and then seeing pictures of two other guns and comparing them to one another, it surely appears that a batch of guns in the 3200a (possibly 2300a) range to at least 3600a were made into police. The range of guns known in this very small sampling range from 83203a – to a high of 83591a, a total of 388 numbers difference. And yet the gun that is marked 2303a, S.Hn and possesses a sear safety, again shows police use from at least 1933 when sears were placed on the guns, and probably being so close to the others, suggests a batch made at the same timeframe.

At a minimum a batch of guns in the same serial number sequence were pulled and sent to the police armory, or made and assigned the “8” before being issued to the police.

A scientific WAG would suggest this, and that the 8 was simply to designate them as different. I would love to know if there are any guns with the same serial number, minus the "8" or a commercial minus the “a”?

I hope that a few more are discovered, evidently JCOE has been working on this mystery for a while, and has spoken to Mr. Kornmayer from Germany on this very issue, so hopefully further information may come to light.


Ed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
727 Posts
I received a fax from Mr Kornmayer last nite with some more information about the OPM. Since our original discussions more than 5 years ago, he has had chance review new data and discuss this issue with other colleagues. He now thinks that OPM stands for Ordungspolizei des Landes Macklenburg. The reasons for this association are found in a report on the” Landespolizei Macklenburg 1919-1935 “. In this report are details of the police P08s and also about the meaning of O.P. for the Ordnungs-Polizei. He is sending copies of this report to me and I will relay them on. He is also sending some material from ”Die Deutsche Polizei,1941” which contains pertinent material.In additon Mr Kornmayer has found another sear safety P08,O.P.M. 399, serial number 83204, in the collection of the Bavarian Criminal Department. Apparently, one of the big problems in trying to make sense of these markings is the provincialism of the various German Districts- many of them determined to use their own unique coding system for identification of their own stuff. The singular characteristics of these P08s found in such an unusually narrow serial range provide an interesting exception to the German police issued P08.
John
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
15,075 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks John, that is interesting. The serial number of O.P.M. 399, 83204, does not have an "a"?

I presume you have relayed this other information to him, so I hope he finds it at least half as interesting as we do.

Ed
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
727 Posts
Yes Ed, I have faxed to him the current OPM members and he is still looking for more information. Kornmayer is a gifted archivist with access to an enormous amount of material. I will ask about the "a". I assume that number came from a file number where alphabet letters are usually deleted.
John
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top