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1911 The First 100 Years Hardcover – September 23, 2010

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Krause Publications; First Edition edition (September 23, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1440211159
  • ISBN-13: 978-1440211157
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 1 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (112 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #139,272 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Patrick Sweeney is a certified master gunsmith, film consultant, certified armorer instructor for police departments nationwide, author of many of Gun Digest Books' best-selling titles, and Handguns Editor for America's largest general-circulation shooting magazine, Guns & Ammo.

Customer Reviews

For anyone interested in the 1911, this book is a must.
A very informative M1911 book with great pictures and a thorough history !
One of the finest books about the history of the venerable 1911.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Karl Erich Martell on December 11, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I really was somewhat skeptical when I picked this up. I've enjoyed certain of Sweeney's writings previously, but had my doubts when I saw this new hardcover on the 1911. Frankly, I didn't have a lot of use for the author's two volume _Gun Digest Book of the 1911_ set (I want to be clear that do I have several other books by Sweeney that I enjoy). This book, however, has really captured my attention and delivered a lot of entertainment and more than a little new info (e.g., great pix of the pivoting lanyard loop on the Savage .45 from the original trials) for me. It's going to be one that gets re-read.

Sweeney starts out kind of slow, setting the stage with a historical overview of the political and technical scene at the time of this fabled pistol's inception. Frankly, I was sort of champing at the bit to get to the "meat" of the 1911's adoption, but he really takes a couple of chapters to get there. And that's not bad - it works with the way this book flows. Sweeney addresses just about every possible aspect of the 1911 in due course, but he takes the reader on a journey that meanders a bit in order to ensure that everything is understood in its place. Really well done - this is quite a readable history.

Sweeney is not only a gunsmith and author, he's a competitor. He writes with authority about the marked evolution of the 1911 from the '60s onward - a lot of this stuff I watched happen, but never really understood the significance of the various causes behind it. I do now, and - while I've never been a gun gamer - I found it all pretty fascinating. There are great chapters in here about semi-custom and full custom guns, and very up-to-the-moment info about the military/police 1911s of today.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By ric on October 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is unique and valuable because it's a tool for historians,shooters,1911 lovers or anyone who's interested in seeing American history unfold from early 1900's to today. It's a well written, extremely interesting story depicting many views of the new self-defense,"gun of the century", the 1911. Besides being the world's greatest semi-automatic pistol this book shows THE why's and how's in detail.Testing and research went on for years, culminating in a proven and trust-worthy friend to all who shot the weapon. All the pro's and cons of a truely unique sidearm that became a "savior" for combat veterans in WWI, WWII, and the Korean conflict;to shooters of the 1911 today.
This book of the 1911 shadows other weapons world-wide as it explains just what made the 1911 a revolutionary man stopper. The 1911 .45 didn't come into the military picture without accompanying problems. Strange as it may seem, the US Army actually showed contemporary intelligence in their testing and re-testing of all the handguns vying for new pistol position. Who could have guessed..................
This book is captivating look at how America came to regard an autoloader weapon as it stepped into a century of "trench warfare" and beyond. A valuable read, well done by the author who steps into history to provide a fascinating dedication of the 1911. A gem.................
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Newf Person on October 26, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As author Patrick Sweeney says in this excellent book, how many technological advances from 1911 are still used today. Really only one, the 1911 pistol designed by the great John Moses Browning for the U.S. Army.

The book details the history of the back and forth between Browning and original manufacturer Colt until the design was perfected, just in time for U.S. troops to use it during World War I.

After a few minor modifications following that war, the same pistol was used by the military through the Vietnam War, when, for a variety of reasons, the U.S. fighting forces went with the 9 mmm NATO round.

However, some Special Forces units have clung to the M1911A1, as the current military model is called, because the .45 ACP round, developed by the Army to go along with the pistol, is a proven man-stopper.

As Sweeney points out, few changes have been made to Browning's design, although advances in metal alloys allow for a stronger gun to be built today.

I have one, with another on order, and unlike some popular lore, find the 1911 a joy to shoot.

As Sweeney points out, the pistol is available from about $400 to more than $4,000 depending on the degree of customization.

Currently, the 1911 comes in several sizes, including the one named by Colt "the officer's model" which is ideal for concealed carry, as is the hybrid with an officer's model receiver and a commander model slide.

Many gun makers offer the 1911 and Caspian Arms offers parts for a gunsmith to assemble a custom model.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By J. W. Mullins VINE VOICE on December 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I will admit right off that I am a huge fan of the M1911 pistol and of its creator John M Browning and that my opinion of the subject matter is obviously biased. That said this book isn't geared towards a 'casual fan' of the design, but those who love the pistol, the history in it, or both. I've spent all of my life shooting guns of all types and sizes, first for fun and food and later for work as a member of the US military for the last twelve years. Having fired hundreds of thousands of rounds over the years in training and war I still prefer the M1911 pistol to all others and for many reasons.

This is a book about the 1911 pistol but is more than just that, it is a book about the history and happenings that required such a pistol. As well as the uses it has seen over the century that followed. There is no other pistol, or any military weapon, that was designed 100 years ago and is still in active service with military forces. Yet the 1911 soldiers on gracefully serving our nation and allies with realistically minor updates. I find that to be amazing and inspiring from a historical small arms perspective as well as from a proud American's view point.

Patrick Sweeney is a well known author when it comes to firearms and has written a number of books on the 1911 specifically. That said he takes a slightly different approach with this book looking at the design, history, reasoning, use, upgrades and future of this weapon platform. The writing is quite good but I find the photography even better. There are pictures of 1911s that are so rare most people will never see them in person. Indeed many people may not even have known some existed. As a reference for the collector and fan the pictures alone are worth the price of the book.
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1911 The First 100 Years
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