With the echoes of exuberance post SHOT Show still ringing in our ears, it’s tough to admit but we’ve got little left in tank now that the 1911’s big day has come. Happy Birthday, 1911, but after covering manufacturer’s salute after manufacturer’s salute to America’s sidearm for months now, it’s sort of like that thing when you say goodbye to somebody but then you realize you’re both walking in the same direction so you either have to make up something to talk about during the walk and then go through the whole routine of saying bon voyage again when you’re actually ready to part ways or, as is usually the case, you just sort of walk together like two strangers in awkward silence until you split paths. Yeah. Just like that.
John Browning’s M1911 design is to most American shooters the river by which all streams are fed when it comes to side-arms. After 100 years, it still represents the world’s basic convention of a handgun and, not unlike America herself, it’s hard to find another successful handgun that doesn’t borrow heavily from the 1911’s concept. So, in honor of America’s sidearm passing a century, here is the start of a retrospective on what gunmakers in 2010 and 2011 did to celebrate the most significant handgun in the world. Add your favorites in our comments.