Researching Your Gun
Researching your Gun
Send us an e-mail with the serial number of your William Evans gun and we will let you know the year of manufacture no charge.
For a fee of £50 we will send you a colour photo-copy of the original entry in our order book and a letter of authentication.This will normally show the date of manufacture, the specifications and the person for whom the gun was orginally made.
Due to time consuming nature of the research required, full gun histories will only be conducted out of season. Quick enquiries such as dates of manufacture etc will be replied to by e-mail or telephone.
Please see below a list of dates.
Gun Build Dates
|Serial Number||Year||Serial Number||Year||Serial Number||Year||Serial Number||Year|
|335 earliest rec.no||undated||
|1,731||1900||9,700||1910||No serial nos||1940-41||18,556||1972|
|1,805||1900||10,539||1913||No serial nos||1944-45||18,584||1975|
|3,741||1898||15,445||1928||18,347||1960||New numbers started|
Please note that one such book dealing with serial numbers 10,426-13,222 is missing covering the years 1912-24.
The records of William Evans guns are kept at 67a St James’s St, London.
The dating of all the guns listed, working from the ledger books is the earliest number at the beginning of each calendar year which can be clearly identified with a date. For the most part these will come within the first month or so of the year, but on occasions may be later where for some reason the records are unclear.
The system of recording numbers in the ledgers was apparently that the serial numbers would be allocated when guns were ordered, usually in batches. Generally, therefore the dates listed will be the approximate dates of production of the individual weapons, not necessarily the year of sale (which, in some cases, might be an appreciable period of time later). Only in the case of the serial numbers for the missing book will it indicate the year of sale, as the year of production is lost. To be absolutely sure of the details, it is therefore necessary to look up individual weapons. However the listings below should give a fairly accurate broad indication of the date of production, which may of course be additionally verified by other details such as proof marks, etc.
The records prior to 1885 are somewhat confused and the numbers jump around not always in obvious sequence. The earliest recorded number is 335 but it is undated and the subsequent numbers until those of 1885 are put in the sequence in which they appear in the records, although this might appear to be misleading. The serial numbers for the years 1885-88 can be estimated reasonably clearly and from 1889 onwards they form a reasonably logical sequence.
In March 1903 a new number book was started, which for a few years overlapped with the existing numbering system which still appears to have been continued during that period. Two numbers for each year will, therefore, be found whilst that overlap continued, the second being the later numbering system.
There are no serial numbers recorded for the years 1940-1 or 1944-45, the former may have been as the result of the bombing of the premises (possibly also the later) or just the constrictions of available supply and demand during those difficult times.