1911 – Colt M1910 trials model officially adopted as the M1911 (March 29);

First order received (April 21)

1912 – First production M1911 delivered to the US Army (January);

Colt Government Model commercially introduced;

Springfield Armory (MA) begins tooling up to produce M1911 under license. (December) Under the terms of the license agreement, the government must first acquire 50,000 pistols from Colt. Afterwards, Springfield has the right to build one pistol for every two acquired from Colt with a royalty of $2 per pistol.

1914 – Springfield Armory begins production of parts and complete pistols

1914 to 1917 – Limited commercial sales of M1911 via the National Rifle Association (NRA)

1917 – US military contracts to Remington Arms-Union Metallic Cartridge Co. (December)

1918 – Additional US military contracts to North American Arms Co. Ltd. (July), A.J. Savage Munitions Company, Winchester Repeating Arms, Caron Brothers Manufacturing, Burroughs Adding Machine Company, Lanston Monotype Machine Company, Savage Arms Company, and National Cash Register Company. Most do not begin production or make deliveries before war ends;

169,164 issued M1911 reported lost, destroyed, or missing.

1919 – Production of US military M1911 ends at Colt and Remington-UMC

1924 – M1911A1 enters production

1929 – Colt Super .38

1931 – Colt Ace

1932 – Colt National Match

1934 – Colt Super Match

1935 – Colt Service Model Ace;

Adjustable rear sight introduced for National Match

1937 – Colt introduces the Swartz firing-pin safety (October)

1938 – Colt Conversion Unit .45 ACP – .22 LR and Conversion Unit .22 LR-.45 ACP

1940 – Singer (April) and Harrington & Richardson receive educational contracts

1941 – Singer completes contract

1942 – Production of civilian Colt models cease; US military contracts let to Remington Rand (March), Union Switch & Signal (May), and Gun Company, Inc. (December)

1945 – Production of US military M1911A1 ends;

Final production of Colt Service Model Ace

1946 – Production of Colt Government Models resumes

1947 – Final production of Colt Ace

1950 – Colt “Zephyr” Commander

1951 – First offering of 9x19mm in Colt Commander

1954 to 1968 – Renewed military interest results in official service-built National Match pistols. This results in a major increase in technical expertise and the production of match grade parts.

1957 – Colt National Match Gold Cup

1960 – Colt Gold Cup National Match Mid-Range

1963 – Colt Mark III Gold Cup National Match Mid-Range

1969 – Colt M1969

1971 – Colt Combat Commander;

Colt Mk IV Series 70 introduced in Government Model and Gold Cup

1972 – Colt Government Model cataloged in 9x19mm

1974 – First press mention of Detonics

1976 – Detonics Combat Master enters production

1977 – AMT Hardballer;

Essex Arms Corp.

1978 – Colt Service Ace reintroduced;

M-S Safari;

Crown City Arms

1979 – Vega;

AMT Hardballer Long Slide

1980 – Coonan

1981 – ODI Viking;

AMT Skipper;

M-S Safari line expands;

Michigan Armament

1982 – Auto-Ordnance;


Arminex Trifire;

.451 Detonics Magnum;

North American Mfg. Win Mag

1983 – Colt Mk IV Series 80;

Colt Combat Grade;

Detonics Scoremaster;

Caspian Arms;

LAR Grizzly (originally North American Mfg. Win Mag)

1984 – Randall Curtis E. LeMay 4-Star and left-hand models

1985 – Colt introduces the Officers ACP and an all-stainless steel Government Model;

Springfield Armory (IL) imports rebranded pistols from IMBEL (Fabrica de Itajuba) of Brazil;

Coonan Model B;

Pachmayr Dominator

1986 – Colt Combat Elite;

Detonics Servicemaster;

Springfield Armory OACP-clone teased;

Falcon Portsider

1987 – Colt Delta Elite;

Springfield Armory Omega;

Olympic Arms buys M-S Safari;

LAR Grizzly longslides

1988 – Colt finally stops using the collet bushing;

Para-Ordnance frame kits;

Springfield Armory Defender and Combat Commander;

Detonics Janus Scoremaster;

Olympic Arms reintroduces the Safari Arms Enforcer and Matchmaster;

Auto-Ordnance ZG51;

Federal Ordnance Ranger

1989 – Colt Double Eagle and stainless Delta Elite;

Springfield Armory Compact;

iAi Javelina;

Auto-Ordnance Pit Bull

1990 – Springfield Armory ’90s Edition;

Para-Ordnance introduces P14.45, P13.45, and P12.45. They also tease a P16.10;


New Detonics resumes production;

iAi Javelina Longslide and Skipper

1991 – Colt introduces the economy-grade M1991A1 and Double Eagle OACP;

Springfield Armory Omega Match. Linkless, and Defender PDP;

Federal Ordnance Ranger Alpha and Ranger Supercomp;

Peters-Stahl PSP-07;

LAR Grizzly Mark IV

1992 – Caspian widebody;

CMC widebody;

Colt Enhanced series;

Springfield Armory Commander renamed the Champion. Springfield also introduces Factory Comp variants and catalogs Custom Shop pistols like the Custom Carry;

McMillan Gunworks Wolverine;

Rocky Mountain Arms

1993 – Colt introduces M1991A1 Commander and Compact variants;

TRI turns into STI, production starts of complete pistols (August);

Para-Ordnance begins production of P16.40 (September);

Springfield Armory High Capacity series;

Baer Custom;

Safari Arms Crest and Carrycomp series;

Coonan Compact;

LAR Grizzly Mark V

1994 – SVI;

Mitchell Arms;

Bul Ltd of Israel attempts to market its widebody frame via Springfield Inc. (XM4);

Coonan Classic

1995 – Kimber;

Springfield Armory Ultra Compact and V-series;

Norinco importation banned;

Bul Ltd. M5;

Mitchell Arms Alpha;


Ithaca 50th Anniversary pistol

1996 – Colt stainless M1991A1 and Combat Target;

Wilson Combat M1996A2;



1997 – Colt introduces the 9x23mm Winchester;

Para-Ordnance P10;

Springfield Armory Super Tuned;

Kimber introduces pistols using the Bul Ltd. M5 frame;

Craig Ltd. Fantom;

Entreprise Arms;




Armalite teases a M1911-style pistol

1998 – Colt introduces the Defender and CCO;

Kimber Compact;

Springfield Armory TRP;

Rock River Arms;

Valtro M1998A1;

Para-Ordnance Limited-series;

Charles Daly;

AMT Commando and Accelerator;

Brolin buys out Mitchell Arms;

Coonan teases .41 Magnum model;

Firearms International M5000;

High Standard announces plans to make M1911-style pistols

1999 – Colt introduces the XS-series but later discontinues the M1991A1 series;

Kimber Ultra Carry;

Para-Ordnance LDA;

Kahr buys Auto-Ordnance;

Galena Industries buys AMT;


LAR drops the Grizzly;

IAI GAL M6000 and M7000

2000 – Colt replaces the XS-series with the XSE-series;

Kimber CDP;

Springfield Armory Loaded-series;

Baer Monolith;

Dan Wesson Pointman;

High Standard introduces the Crusader and teases a resurrection of the Randall as well as the Pauza P51;

Peters-Stahl High Capacity

2001 – Colt introduces M1911A1 reproduction;

Kimber Series II;

Springfield Armory Operator and ILS;

Wilson Combat KZ45;

Baer Comanche;

Ed Brown;

Para-Ordnance introduces single-stack pistols;

Casull Arms;

Century Arms Blue Thunder;

Pacific Armament Corp.

2002 – Colt introduces the Defender Plus and reintroduces the Series 70;

Springfield Armory Micro Compact;

Dan Wesson Patriot;

EAA announces importation of Bul Ltd pistols;

DPMS teases a M1911 pistol

2003 – Colt introduces the Gunsite pistols, the Special Combat, and a M1911 reproduction;

Smith & Wesson SW1911;

Nighthawk Custom;

STI introduces single-stack pistols;

Lone Star Armament displays at SHOT Show and is bought out by STI later that year;

KBI announces a new line of pistols based on the Bul Ltd. M5;

Mitchell Arms teases new M1911 pistols;

Bond Arms teases a M1911 chambered in .450 Auto Bond


Detonics USA;

Guncraft Industries Model 1;

Uselton Arms;

Para-Ordnance Power Extractor;

The Crusader Group absorbs AMT and High Standard

2005 – Rock Island Armory;

Taurus PT1911;

USFA M1910 and M1911;

Iver Johnson;

Springfield Armory teases the new Defender sized around the .45 GAP

2007 – Colt Concealed Carry;

Springfield EMP;

STI Spartan;

Hogue Avenger;


2008 – Colt reintroduces the Delta Elite. The New Agent replaces the Concealed Carry;

Double Star;


2009 – Colt Rail Gun and Combat Elite;

Dan Wesson CCO;

Guncrafter Industries Model 2 and American;

Legacy Sports International Citadel;

American Classic;

EMF Hartford

2010 – Magnum Research DE1911;

Guncrafter Industries Model 3;


Cimarron M1911;

Girsan MC1911;

Interstate Arms Corp.


KBI/Charles Daly goes out of business;

CO Arms

2011 – Ruger SR1911;

Colt New Agent DAO;

Springfield Armory Range Officer;

Remington 1911R1,

.22 TCM;

Cylinder & Slide;

Turnbull Manufacturing;

Taylor’s & Co.;

ATI FX1911;

Christensen Arms

2012 – Cabot;

RRA Poly

2015 – Colt Competition-series;



2016 – Inland Manufacturing;

Llama Max-I

2017 – Colt Gold Cup Trophy;

Dan Wesson Elite-series (Caspian widebody frame);

Wilson Combat EDC X9


1 Comment

  1. Pathfinder says:

    Thanks for that.


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