North American Arms

The North American Arms Co. Ltd., Quebec City, Quebec, Canada was awarded a contract on July 1 1918, to manufacture M1911 pistols at the rate of 2000 pistols per day, at a cost of $15.50 each.

NAA (North American Arms) leased the old Ross Rifle Plant in Quebec City for the manufacture of the pistol.  Few details are known about the operation, and no pistols were delivered.  The Company however did reach the pre-production stage of manufacturing, and approximately 100 toolroom/pre-production pistols were made.  Pistol serial number 46 was submitted to the Claims Board for inspection in the Spring of 1920.  The claims board was set up to examine and settle any claims arising out of canceled contracts and the like.  The board members included Colonel Gilbert H. Stewart, later Commanding Officer of Springfield Armory.

NAA pistols had all of the normal characteristics that a Colts M1911 had but were marked differently.  The left slide legend  had the manufacturers name and address.  The serial number was marked on the slide just above the thumb safety, the trigger was marked on the Left side, sometimes inside the receiver, and the receiver was marked under the left grip.  No inspection or acceptance marks.  These pistols are of course quite rare and are seldom sold in original condition.  Therefore establishing a value is mostly guess work. Reference Charles Clawsons “Colt .45 Service pistols”.  

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Left profile
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Right profile


Slide stop and trigger

Ejection port

Rear sight and hammer

Rear view

Right side

Rear sight and hammer (top)

Rear sight and hammer (top)

Front sight

Thumb safety


Mainspring housing

Grip and screw
From the collection of Karl Karash
Rev 1.1