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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Cant remember offhand where or when I was involved in this particualar discussion but the 'ole timers such as the 03 and 03A3 came up under discussion and someone (can't remember who offhand) stated that in the "movie" Sgt York which starred Gary Cooper it showed him using an 03 when in fact the "real" Sgt York used an entirely different weapon such as an Enfield perhaps or whatever it was ....

Can anyone out there verify this and make the truth be known here ... :?:

Six
 

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In the movie (which I havent seen in a long time) I believe it is a 1903, but i keep having visions of this one scene where he nails about 5 or 6 guys and its with a slanted bolt rifle, similar to a Lee Navy...but that could be my head playing tricks. google.com will surley provide the answers! i shall research....
 

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There's a site out there,that has SGT.Yorks Diary posted.I read it but didn't save it.He was issued a P-17 Enfeild,but trained with the 03.He wrote that he didn't like the peep sight on the enfeild and prefered the sights the 03 had.If I can find the site again,I'll have the wife show me how to post the link. :oops:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks Ely ...

Now another question here then ...

Was his Enfield a .303 or an ought six? :roll:

Six
 

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it was 30-06. i've read various report either 1903 or 1917. numbers would point you it being a 1917. since approximately 2/3 of all rifles used in europe during WWI were Eddystone manufactured 1917s.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Got it now!

My problem was ... was that the moment I saw the word "Enfield" I would immediately think .303 .....

Thanks for clearing that up for me here ... :wink:

Six
 

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yeah six that threw my one buddy when i brought home the 1917. he had no idea what it was and it didn't look anything like any enfield he had in his collection. i had to drag out my copy of janes guns to show him it was a US rifle and an Enfield.

also Sgt. York's medal of honor citation does not say what weapon he used, some citations do.

Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company G, 328th Infantry, 82d Division. Place and date: Near Chatel-Chehery, France, 8 October 1918. Entered service at: Pall Mall, Tenn. Born: 13 December 1887, Fentress County, Tenn. G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919. Citation: After his platoon had suffered heavy casualties and 3 other noncommissioned officers had become casualties, Cpl. York assumed command. Fearlessly leading 7 men, he charged with great daring a machinegun nest which was pouring deadly and incessant fire upon his platoon. In this heroic feat the machinegun nest was taken, together with 4 officers and 128 men and several guns.
this is taken from http://www.army.mil/cmh-pg/mohwwi.htm

for some really interesting reading read his diary.. he talks about his rifle being full of grease! sounds familiar. also, he doesn't mention what kind of rifle he had on oct. 8, 1918. http://volweb.utk.edu/Schools/York/diary.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
That "diary"link was some pretty interesting readin' sir ...

Thanks fubar ... :wink:

Six
 

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you're very welcome six.

i really enjoyed reading myself.

this entry is priceless

APRIL 18th
St. Silva--We had a review and I got my medal of honor, and then I went to division headquarters and had my photo made.
so typical of the true hero. subtle and understates the importance of the event.
 

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:D And another fact is that he was inthe 82nd Div. which is now the 82nd Abn. Division :D
 

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I always wondered about that movie too. I saw a show on the history channel once and sgt York was one of the topics and according to them it was an M1917 he carried into battle. Not a 03 like the movie.
Oh by the way, For those of you that refer to the M1917 30 cal bolt rifle as a p17 PLEASE don't call it a P17 over at jouster. They will flame you up one side and down the other. It never was a p17. It is just a generic label that it got stuck with somewhere in history because of it's similarity to the pattern 14 rifle. Officialy though it is a M1917 and not a P17. Just trying to save someone a flaming. I hope I don't come off like I am doing it. It's not my intention at all. I got it good once over there at jouster selling some parts once for a P17. Some of them guys just have no life away from the computer.
 

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Sgt. York's diary was a great read, thanks fubar!
 

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CPL York used the US Model of 1917 (M1917 Rifle). Was probably the Eddystone and highly doubtful it was the Winchester. Winchester M1917 rifles were rejected by AEF for lack of interchangeable repair parts just like the problems with their M1 Rifles in WW2 (later fixed). York was promoted sometime after this engagement.

In that era, thru the issue of the M14 most weapons had names as far as soldiers were concerned. I asked my father-in-law, a WW2 infantryman detailed to military police, if he recognized some weapons I had on the bench and his answers

M1903 "Springfield"
M1917 "Enfield"
M1 "Garand"
M1 Carbine "Carbine"
M1911 "Colt 45"

I've no clue where P17 came from, perhaps from the UK or Canada where these were sold or lend-leased early in WW2. But these weren't P-rifles there either as the P-nomenclature was abandoned in the 1920s.

Experts like General Hatcher consider the M1917 to be the finest bolt action rifle used in WW1.

My Eddystone M1917 has RA-P and 3-GMK markings of which I know nothing, other than they're post-issue marks.

-- Chuck
 

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Chuck,
The RA-P is a Ratan Arsenal rebuild stamp. The 3-GMK has remained a mystery to collectors.

Regards

Ox
 

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I looked at two M1917 Eddystones yesterday at an Ohio gun show. Both wore the 3-GMK mark although it looked like 8-GMK on one.

My M1917 apears to have been arsenal parkerized sometime in its life, but also appears to have all Eddystone parts. Had it for years, long before they had anyone collecting them.

-- Chuck
 

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the M1917 was based on the Pattern 1914 enfield which was supposed to replace the Lee-Enfield. it was thought before WW1 that the Lee wouldn't be an ideal infantry weapon ( how wrong they where ) and requested a mauser type replacment also chambered in .303 british. the US Army got interested and asked for a .30-06 verson that was adopted in 1917. they're also popular for building customs on my granddad had one rebuilt in .338 and it was a sweet shooter
 

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ive got a gun shop not that far from me that has had (in the last couple months anyway) 2-3 hanging on the wall. they look to have new commercial stocks or new parkerizing on them and they run about $400-$450.

since i need one for my US military rifle collection are there any things in particular for me to look at and are these good prices?

thanks

david
 

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The price wouldn't be bad for one except for your saying they look to have been reparked and new commercial stocks on them.

That leads me to suspect they are not stock rifles to say the least, in which case their value is nothing. Reparked would be okay as it might of been done say when it was rearsenaled (which has happened to many a rifle), but commercial stocks takes away most if not all the collector value of the rifle.

My advice is to do some research on the net to see what the rifle stocks should look like then check the rifles out themselves before you take the plunge and buy. And don't forget to dicker - you never know they might come down on price, especially if they got them in on trade.

However, if they've been sporterized, then don't even bother.
 
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