1918/1920 Dated DWM LUGER  Archived

Genuine German Luger - Largest Variety of Lugers Offered
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This is a beautiful example of the Model 1908 DWM (Deutsches Waffen Und Munitionsfabriken Co) Manufactured Pistole-08. The chamber marking represent the military contract year of production and this example is a 1918 dated Luger. The frame tells us that it was an artillery (200mm barrel) and has had the barrel replaced by DWM which had stockpiles of parts and repairs when the war ended. The is a 9mm, all matching police Parabellum. The DWM monogram markings appear on the 1st toggle link and the extractor is marked 'Geladen' (Loaded).   This example has all matching serial numbers. The thumb safety is marked "Gesichert" and when exposed (safety down) means safe. (917)

NOTE: Photographs taken today with the high mega-pixel camera show more than we sometimes can see with the human eye. Magnified close-ups show us tool marks and natural surface conditions that one normally doesn't see in the ordinary handling of the weapon.  Photographs are copyrighted, all rights reserved, any extraction, reproduction or display of gun pictures without the express consent of the Phoenix Investment Arms is strictly prohibited.  Before your purchase please read Legal for Conditions of Sale. Thank you for your cooperation.



This is a Weimar period 1920 dated DWM military police Luger that is a 9mm Parabellum re-work of a 1918 artillery frame. This Parabellum has a 100mm barrel length with all matching serial numbers to include matching, original grips. Serial number placement is in the military ("exposed") style  The barrel is numbered and proofed and matches the frame. This is a very unusual Luger with a collection of variations.

Of particular note is the manner the 1920 was marked on the gun and then struck through.  It is apparent that the gun was undergoing a re-work at the factory and the method of marking the 1920 Lugers under the treaty of Versailles had not been established by the Weimar government.  There is even a 1920 stamped on the side of the grip (below) which is something that in 35 years we have never observed.

The small indentation on the front of the frame above the chamber is where the artillery sight fit on the original barrel. The gun was originally built as a 200mm barrel and this was removed and a new 100mm (4") barrel fitted for police use. Here you can see the addition of the sear safety the prevented the gun from firing when the side plate was removed and a round was chambered.  This was a police ordered modification.



 The new (Weimar) German Government after WWI found itself with an armed citizenry with all the soldiers bringing their weapons home from the war.

  On August 1st, 1920 the German authorities issued an order from Berlin that cited the impending disarming of the people required that all weapons of the armed forces were to be marked with the date to prevent people from stealing military supplies and selling them back to the government.

  On August 7th, 1920 rewards were begun for the turn-in of weapons to the government paying 100 Marks (then about $23.50) for a small arm until October 10th after which the reward was to be reduced to 50 Marks. Thus began the disarming of the citizenry; a lesson that should not be lost on free people.


All Matching Serial Numbers include the magazine
Unit markings on the inside of the grip tell us that this gun was assigned to a unit during WWI.

Above Right: A Crown RC and an inspectors proof on the rear toggle tell us one of the re-works were very early DWM after the war when these proofs were still in use. Above Left: Police magazines were numbered 1 & 2; this is an all matching gun including the magazine.


SEAR SAFETY:  During the 1920's it was determined German authorities that one could remove the side plate with the gun loaded, thereby exposing the sear, and by then pressing on the sear discharge the gun. In this case you can see the sear safety probably fully installed at the original time of the first re-work.

This was the invention of Ludwig Schiwy, a gunsmith and the owner of F.W. Vandry & Company, Berlin. It consisted of a spring-steel bar on the top of the trigger plate which springs down into a recess in the sear bar, locking the mechanism, if the trigger plate was removed.


The holster was a conversion of an artillery holster when the decision was made not to continue the artillery model beyond WWI; in most case because the Treaty of Versailles that forbid the use of guns more than 100mm.  The 200mm artillery and 150mm navy models were in most part the target of this section of the treaty.

To fill the slot built into the original artillery holster for the cleaning rod the German policeman of this holster carved a cleaning rod for this holster; brought home to the US by a serviceman and presented with this rig.

The Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicated on November 9, 1918 ending the monarchy. From November 1918 through January 1919, Germany was governed by the Council of People's Commissioners. It was extraordinarily active, and issued a large number of decrees. The Deutsches Reich  (Weimar Republic) was established on August 11, 1919 and attempted to bring all the parties under one government. During this time order was maintained largely by State Police and various paramilitary organizations that used weapons from WWI.

Polizei with Helpers


This Luger is all matching including the magazine, numbered for Police magazines.  This Luger bears a stock lug which not all police models have.

The Magazine is a late Haenel Schmeisser extruded magazine proofed with the Eagle L police proof.


In the German Heeres-Verordnungsblatt Published by the Reichswehrministerium in Berlin on March 17, 1932 the rear connecting pin was ordered to be marked with the last two numbers of the serial number.   On September 6, 1935 the Polizeipräsident in Berlin ordered that the Haenel -Schmeisser designed magazines to replace all others as their supplies were expended.  This Luger went through several police reworks and compliance requirements.

Although it has a 1920 Date there are no Weimar Proofs, again indicating a very early conversion probably done by DWM from guns brought back from the field and before the Weimar government had established orders for marking and proofing military weapons.

1918/1920 Double Date Luger Imperial Proofs


LEFT: Poster Announcing the Surrender of Weapons

Then on August 7th, 1920 the Disarming-of-the-People Law set forth a reward of 100 Marks, (then about $23.50), were given for small arms until October 10th at which time the award was reduced to 50 Marks. This began the disarming of the German people, paving the way for seizing all the private weapons.  This is a lesson for all of us.


Above: The inside of the gun is in excellent condition reflecting may years of care and cleaning.  Police guns didn't suffer the extraordinary use that the military Lugers were subjected to. Below:  The Bavarian Police in 1920 and the Prussian Police in 1922 ordered the marking of weapons.  This order was again consolidated and issued in 1932 so the evidence the gun was unit marked is most likely correct.

It appears that the gun was originally unit marked on the inside of the grip strap.  In August 1934 the Reich War Ministry issued an order that small arms would no longer be unit marked, ending a unique variation for the collectors.

Berlin Schutzpolizei

Berlin Schutzpolizei protecting an early National Socialist Rally.  The Police were the mainstay of the maintenance of order as the army had demobilized and authority was established by gangs and private army's.

The installation of the new barrel is reflected in the different text yet the original caliber markings are still Imperial markings. Another indication that this conversion was among the very first of DWM's attempt to market their inventory to the Police Organizations.


This is a magnificent example of a very early 1920 police conversion by DWM utilizing an artillery frame, new barrel, adding the sear safety and proofing the entire gun to make it all matching.  It also shows the 1920 dating before standardization. 


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