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Practically Shooting

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  Hi, new user doing research.  My son bought a M1941 5 or 6 years ago, purchased from someone selling for the owner who said he carried it in the pacific theatre.  Being young prevented him from understanding the value of obtaining documented provenance so I am attempting to backtrack.  After reading BarryinIN's 1941 Part 1 history, it seems this article articulates rather well what is found after reading about 300 pages of web documents, many of them repetitive.

  Web consensus seems to indicate 23 were actually issued and another "X" wound up in various marine hands.  The Part 1 article refers to 750 went to Parachute Regiments and Raiders........ somehow.  I am curious if the 23 documented serial numbers are available and if there are any references to the 750 by SN group or any other way.  I found one obscure reference showing 650 were inventoried after the battle at Guadalcanal and have seen a photo of the actual document.  It only show the total number Johnson Semi-automatic rifles as well as the number of Johnson LMG's, but neither defined by SN.  Does anyone know a way to research deeper into marine record keeping achieves?   

  Unless I become pen pals with the broker who sold it, I can't get information from him.  He is getting an all expenses paid retreat at a federal penitentiary after the ATF found some of his record keeping to be of a questionable nature.  That fact alone does trouble me about the story but it doesn't discount it completely.  I have taken it to reputable dealers and collectors and they describe the wear on the stock and other parts as consistent with use in a battle atmosphere and uncharacteristic of a post-war occasional shooter.   I also have a list of 96 participants from the Paramarines at Guadalcanal and am looking to somehow tie a name to the battle and link the gun, as described by the aforementioned guest in Federal housing, to the gun through research/contact.  

  The is another website devoted to Johnson Arms and one of the members has a book of non-prefixed SN's and can give the individual parts build up SN's of any gun 0001-9999.  I am awaiting approval to become a member there so I can verify it is as built from Johnson.  I have many steps to go to establish provenance but you have to start somewhere.  Any answers to my questions or any suggestions?


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The book on Johnson rifles by Bruce Canfield has a list known USMC Johnsons.  It is a very incomplete list, showing only a few dozen, but is way more than we had to go on maybe ten years ago.   


We recently moved, so my copy isn't as handy as it could be, but I can get to it.  I can check yours against the list if you want to PM me the serial number.  Or if you don't want to do that, you might as well buy the book, because I promise you will get plenty of use from it.  


The guys on the Johnson Automatics forum will be able to tell you many details of your rifle provided the serial number doesn't have a letter prefix.  

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Hi, thanks for the reply.  It is good to hear there are at least of few records of SN's that made it to the USMC.  I will try to find the book locally and if not, I will send the SN to you.  After reading what seemed to be hundreds of articles about the gun, you did a very good summarization of the info that is randomly splattered across the internet.  Thank you for that.

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