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Lot 1333: J. PURDEY & SONS A PAIR OF 12-BORE SELF-OPENING SIDELOCK EJECTORS, serial no. 26141 / 2,

Fine Modern & Antique Guns - December 2016

by Holt's Auctioneers

December 8, 2016

London, United Kingdom

Live Auction
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  • J. PURDEY & SONS A PAIR OF 12-BORE SELF-OPENING SIDELOCK EJECTORS, serial no. 26141 / 2,
  • J. PURDEY & SONS A PAIR OF 12-BORE SELF-OPENING SIDELOCK EJECTORS, serial no. 26141 / 2,
  • J. PURDEY & SONS A PAIR OF 12-BORE SELF-OPENING SIDELOCK EJECTORS, serial no. 26141 / 2,
  • J. PURDEY & SONS A PAIR OF 12-BORE SELF-OPENING SIDELOCK EJECTORS, serial no. 26141 / 2,
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Description: J. PURDEY & SONS
A PAIR OF 12-BORE SELF-OPENING SIDELOCK EJECTORS, serial no. 26141 / 2,
30in. replacement nitro chopperlump barrels (by the makers in 1975), the ribs engraved ''J. PURDEY & SONS. AUDLEY HOUSE. SOUTH AUDLEY STREET. LONDON. ENGLAND.'' and engraved ''1'' and ''2'' at the breech ends, 2 1/2in. chambers, bored approx. imp. cyl. and 1/2 choke (both), self-opening actions, the toplevers engraved ''1'' and ''2'', automatic safeties with gold-inlaid ''SAFE'' details, cocking indicators, fine bouquet and scroll engraving, brushed and blued finish, 16 1/2in. figured stocks including 1in. leather-covered recoil pads, weight 6lb. 14oz. (both), in their brown leather double motorcase


Provenance: The makers have kindly confirmed that this pair was completed in 1949 for Colonel W. Stirling, and were rebarrelled by the makers in 1975.

Lieutenant-Colonel William "Bill" Joseph Stirling of Keir (1911 - 1983) was the eldest son of Brigadier General Archibald Stirling of Kier, and served in the Scots Guards before commanding 62 Commando in the Second World War, and forming 2nd Special Air Service in May 1943. His brother, Colonel Sir Archibald David Stirling, was the founder of the SAS.

The 2nd SAS took part in operations in support of the Allied landings in Sicily: Operation Narcissus was a raid by 40 members of 2nd SAS on a lighthouse on the south east coast of Sicily. The team landed on 10 July with the mission of capturing the lighthouse and the surrounding high ground. Operation Chestnut involved two teams of ten men each, parachuted into northern Sicily on the night of 12 July, to disrupt communications, transport and the enemy in general.

On mainland Italy they were involved in Operation Begonia which was the airborne counterpart to the amphibious Operation Jonquil, from 2 to 6 October, 61 men were parachuted between Ancona and Pescara. The object was to locate escaped prisoners of war in the interior and muster them on beach locations for extraction. Begonia involved the interior parachute drop by 2nd SAS. Jonquil entailed four seaborne beach parties from 2nd SAS with the Free French SAS Squadron as protection. Operation Candytuft was a raid by 2nd SAS on 27 October. Inserted by boat on Italy''s east coast between Ancona and Pescara, they were to destroy rail road bridges and disrupt rear areas.

Near the end of the year the Special Raiding Squadron reverted to their former title 1st SAS and together with 2nd SAS were withdrawn from Italy and placed under command the 1st Airborne Division.

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