WWI Mauser C96 Broomhandle Red Nine 9mm Semi-Automatic Pistol, C&R

SOLD FOR: $5,525

WOA#: WY231109DM006

Make: Mauser

Model: 1896 9mm Military Contract

Serial Number: 39754 (The serial number range for this model was from 1 to about 141000.)

Year of Manufacture: 1917-1918

Caliber: 9mm Parabellum

Action Type: Single Action Semi–Auto with Internal Magazine

Markings: The top of the barrel chamber is marked “WAFFENFABRIK / MAUSER / OBERNDORF A/N”, the left shoulder with “39754”, the left side with a double crowned “U” and the right side with a Crowned “Script I” Army acceptance mark. The top rear of the bolt is marked with “9754” with a double crowned “U” and the top of the bolt stop is marked “9754”. The right side of the frame is marked “WAFFENFABRIK MAUSER / OBERNDORF A. NECKAR”. The rear face of the frame is marked with “39754”. The rear face of the hammer is marked with a “S” stamped over the top of a “N” (New Safety-Introduced in about 1915) and “754”. The rear of the lock frame is marked “39754”. The action block is marked “9754”. The sear is marked “754”. The top of the magazine floorplate is marked “9754”. .  The front of the mag well has a Prussian Eagle Acceptance Stamp.  The left side of the trigger is marked “5”.

Barrel Length: 5 1/2”

Sights / Optics: The rear sight is a “V” notch sliding elevator sight with markings from “50-500” that is pinned to the barrel extension. The front sight is an inverted “V” notch fixed to a rectangular base on the barrel.

Stock Configuration & Condition: The grips are two-piece walnut with 24 grooves and a large “9” burnt into both grips and filled with red paint. The “9s” are well formed and appear to be done at the factory. References show that the grip grooves changed from fine (32) to coarse (23) through production.  The grips have minor handling wear with a few light nicks and scratches. The serrations are well defined. There are no chips or cracks. The grips are in Fine-plus overall condition.

Type of Finish: Blued, some small parts are Fire-Blued and some are In The White.

Finish Originality: Original

Bore Condition: The rifling is sharp. The is no erosion in the bore, but there is some stubborn copper fouling. In this writer’s opinion, the bore rates 9 out of 10.

Overall Condition: This pistol retains about 93% of its metal finish. Most of the balance is minor finish loss consistent with holster wear, primarily on the barrel. There are some scattered light nicks and scratches, most on the front of the floor plate.  The action shows operational wear. The grip screw is tool marked with a strong slot. The markings are clear. Overall, this pistol rates in Fine condition.

Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The rear of the frame is slotted for a shoulder stock and the bottom of the grip has a boss for a lanyard ring, with a lanyard ring installed. The barrel extension is tight to the frame. This pistol has a New Safety that requires the hammer to be pulled back slightly while the safety is engaged. 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: None

Our Assessment: The Model 1896 Broomhandle Mauser, with its unique appearance, is a remarkable firearm, and its “Red Nine” variants stand out as some of the most distinctive pistols ever produced. During World War I, Mauser fulfilled two contracts for the military: initially supplying 7.63mm pistols, followed by a second batch in 9mm. It quickly became clear that having two similar-looking pistols chambered for different ammunition was problematic. In response, from December 1917, a large “9” was burned into the grips of the 9mm versions and filled with red paint for easy identification. This modification was applied both at the factory and in the field, resulting in three versions of the 9mm pistol: unmarked grips, factory-marked “nines,” and field-marked “nines.”

This particular pistol is a 9mm Military Contract model featuring factory-burned “nines” on the grips. It boasts matching serial numbers across all parts and is equipped with the correct “New Safety” and an Army acceptance mark on the right side of the barrel extension. It even boasts a beautiful Prussian Eagle mark on the front of the magwell.  The pistol retains its original lanyard ring on the butt.  In Fine condition, the pistol retains about 94% of its original finish. The bore is in excellent condition for its age, and the mechanics are robust. With only about 141,000 units produced, and less than two-thirds featuring factory-marked grips, this model is a rarity, especially considering the survival challenges it faced through WWI trench warfare and post-war Germany’s turmoil. A truly exceptional piece, this pistol represents a significant find for serious collectors.  Please see our photos and good luck on your bid! -L.S.

WWI Mauser C96 Broomhandle Red Nine 9mm Semi-Automatic Pistol, C&R
WWI Mauser C96 Broomhandle Red Nine 9mm Semi-Automatic Pistol, C&R