M1903 Springfield serial number / stock cartouche list


The stamps were put on the rifles to show that 3 things had been done:

1. Checked for working condition
2. Fired with proof round and checked for damage
3. Accepted by the Ordnance Department

The maker's mark and Ordnance wheel went on the center side of the stock below the back end of the receiver. The circled 'P' went on the pistol grip halfway between the trigger guard and bottom.

I will list the main stamps by manufacturer in sequence of use, plus other stamps put on.

THIS LIST IS FROM 3 DIFFERENT SOURCES. THERE ARE SOME DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE 3, AND 1 OF THEM MAY BE HALF FACT, HALF FICTION. tHE NUMBERS WITH QUESTION MARKS AFTER THEM ARE ESTIMATES.

IF ANYONE CAN PROVIDE BETTER INFORMATION, PLEASE SEND IT. I WILL REVISE THE LIST.

HERE IS A RULE TO FOLLOW WHEN RESTORING ANY ITEM WITH A SERIAL NUMBER, AND IT REQUIRES PARTS WHICH WERE REVISED AT A PARTICULAR SERIAL NUMBER RANGE:

IF YOUR ITEM HAS A SERIAL NUMBER CLOSE TO WHERE THE PART WAS CHANGED, USING THE EARLIER VERSION WILL ALWAYS BE RIGHT. THE PART HAD TO HAVE BEEN IN EXISTENCE WHEN THE ITEM WAS ASSEMBLED.

Springfield Armory

S/N 100,000 - 1,055,091? 1905 - 1918
The "S" was stamped on the front of the stock from about 1905 to about 1914: s/n 100,000 - 590,600
Stamp applied to stock with no finish.

S/N 761,758 - 1,548,621
1918 - End of production
Stamp applied to stock already finished.

S/N 750,000? - 1,239,640
Late 1918 - 1921
What was the purpose of the Eagle Head? Did it denote acceptance by the U.S. Ordnance Dept., like the later Ordnance Wheel?

S/N 1,369,761? - 1,548,601 1931? - 1939
This is the stamp of Mr. Stanley P. Gibbs, who worked at Springfield Armory from 1916 to 1951.
He became a small arms inspector in the early 1930's. The exact date is unknown.
The earliest rifle encountered that I know of is in the 1,436,000 range with a barrel date of August, 1933.
I have listed the starting 1931 year number of 1,369,761 as the start of his inspections. If anyone has more accurate information, please send it.

Remington Arms Co.

S/N 3,000,000 - 3,050,000
Remington M1903 Rifle

S/N 3,050,001 - 3,100,000?
M1903 Modified Rifle. The geometric shapes in front of the floorplate have numbers in them. The numbers ranged from 0 to at least 89. Similar stamps were put on the receiver.

S/N 3,100,001 - end of production.
These were used on the M1903 Modified, M1903a3, and M1903a4.
Remington used at least 3 different Ordnance Wheels.

"RA" was stamped on the stocks after Smith-Corona began production of M1903a3 Rifles, late 1942.
Other styles of Ordnance Wheel and "FJA" in box.

Smith-Corona Typewriter Co.

All Smith-Corona rifles had these stamps. The geometric shapes in front of the floorplate ranged from 2 - at least 23.

Smith-Corona signed the contract to make M1903a3 Rifles in May, 1942. The production start date is not known- maybe late 1942.


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