Model 1896 C96 Broomhandle .30 Mauser 7.63x25mm Semi-Auto Pistol C&R

SOLD FOR: $2,026

WOA#: WY240117SS007

Make: Mauser

Model: Model 1896 C96

Serial Number: 304287

Year of Manufacture: 1915 and 1921

Caliber: 7.63x25mm Mauser (.30 Mauser Automatic)

Action Type: Single Action Semi–Auto with Internal Magazine

Markings: The left side of the barrel shoulder is marked “304287”.  The top of the barrel flat is marked “WAFFENFABRIK / MAUSER / OBERNDORF A/N”. The right side of the barrel extension is marked with a crown “U” mark. The right side of the frame is marked “WAFFENFABRIK MAUSER / OBERNDORF A.NECKAR”.  The top of the charging handle is marked “287” with a double crown “U” mark.  The hammer is marked “287” and “NS” for the “Neues Sicherung” or ‘New Safety’.  The rear is marked “304287”. The right side of the sear is marked “147”.  The action block is marked “287” and with a proof mark. The bottom of the barrel flat has a few small faded proof marks.

Barrel Length: 5 1/2”

Sights / Optics: The pistol is mounted with a “V” notch rear sliding elevator sight with markings from “50-1000” that is pinned to the barrel extension. The front sight is an inverted “V” notch integral to a rectangular base fixed to the barrel.

Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece walnut panels with coarse serrations. The grips have a couple of light nicks toward the bottom. Otherwise, there are only light handling marks. There are no chips or cracks.  The grips are not original. Overall, the grips are in about Fine condition.

Type of Finish: Blue

Finish Originality: Refinished

Bore Condition: The bore is gray and the rifling is defined. There is moderate erosion in the bore.

In this writer’s opinion, this bore rates 6 out of 10.

Many military and C&R eligible weapons have bores that will show erosion. This is not only due to age but to the fact that corrosive primers were commonly used in ammunition worldwide. For example, the U.S. used corrosive ammunition throughout WWII. The U.S. military did not begin to phase out corrosive-primed ammunition until the 1950s.

Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 80% of its metal refinish. There are scuffs and scratches throughout. A lot of finish has been oxidized, resulting in a plum color on many of the parts. The barrel exterior has areas of corrosion on both sides. There is fouling in the magazine well. The screw heads show moderate use. The refinish has caused many of the markings to disappear, and the ones that are present are blurry. Overall, this pistol is in about Very Good condition as refinished.

Mechanics: The action functions correctly.  We did not fire this pistol. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.

Box, Paperwork & Accessories: This pistol comes in a black padded hard case and with 4 charger clips.

Our Assessment: The 1896 Broomhandle, one of the earliest semi-automatic pistols, is as fascinating as it is influential in the world of firearms. This iconic pistol was first manufactured by the German arms company Mauser in 1896 and quickly garnered attention for its unique design and mechanical innovation.

The C96 Broomhandle, named for its distinctive grip resembling the handle of a broom, was revolutionary in several aspects. It was one of the first semi-automatic pistols to enjoy widespread use and featured a distinctive integral box magazine in front of the trigger, unusual in an era dominated by revolver handguns. This pistol was typically chambered in 7.63x25mm Mauser, a powerful cartridge for its size, which contributed to its popularity.

The C96 was not officially adopted by any major nation’s military but was used extensively by soldiers and officers in various conflicts around the world, including World War I and World War II. It gained a reputation for reliability and high build quality. The C96 also saw popularity among civilian users and became an iconic weapon in revolutionary movements, notably used by figures such as Winston Churchill and T.E. Lawrence.

Over its production life, the C96 Broomhandle underwent various modifications and was produced in different configurations and calibers, including a select-fire version with a detachable magazine. Its design influenced many later pistol designs and marked an important step in the evolution of semi-automatic handguns.

Today, the C96 Broomhandle holds a special place in firearm history. Its distinctive appearance and historical significance make it a coveted item among collectors and firearms enthusiasts, symbolizing a pivotal moment in the development of modern handguns. This late-war to interwar production C96 was heavily refinished at some point, but it would still make a great historical piece to any collection.  Please see our photos.

Model 1896 C96 Broomhandle .30 Mauser 7.63x25mm Semi-Auto Pistol C&R
Model 1896 C96 Broomhandle .30 Mauser 7.63x25mm Semi-Auto Pistol C&R