Missing WWI Guns Found in Australia
New South Wales discovery turns up the rare firearms.
A family in New South Wales in Australia discovered a cache of weapons that had been missing for 70 years. They were packing up their Sydney home in preparation for a move when they discovered the firearms.
Corporal William Jones was a World War I soldier who had a Colt revolver and a Bayard pistol that formerly belonged to a German soldier. He apparently had stuck the pistols in the drawer of an old workbench and they were forgotten about and lost to time. Corporal Jones’s great great grandson discovered the weapons as he and his family were moving and he turned them over to the Nowra Police Station.
The pistol is considered to be historically significant and the officers and the family are working to arrange for it to be donated to the Australian War Memorial where the pistol will be displayed. Corporal Jones was out looking for survivors when a German soldier attempted to shoot him with the Bayard pistol. Jones survived, and a fellow soldier gave him the German gun as a memento.
“We were quite surprised to see an item of such historical significance be handed into our station,” Shoalhaven Chief Inspector Steven Johnson said in a statement on Friday.
The semi-automatic pistols were produced in a Belgian factory between 1908 and 1930 and the rediscovered weapon is in “great condition”, Chief Inspector Johnson said.
Image of Shoalhaven Police Chief Inspector Steven Johnson with the World War I Bayard pistol from southcoastregister.com.au