The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) , whose authority to sell military surplus guns lay fallow under the Barack Obama administration, has received nearly 100,000 M1 Garands and will get 8,000 M1911/M1911A1 pistols that will be available for the public to buy.
The stock of repatriated M1 Garands—which had been loaned to Turkey and the Philippines after World War II, under the Military Assistance Program (MAP)—will go a long way toward replenishing the CMP’s depleted supply of the historic rifle.
The effort by the Army to take back possession of the rifles was a long one, hindered by the Obama administration’s anti-gun attitude. While repatriation was never an option while Obama was in office, the Army and the CMP did behind-the-scenes tasks to lay the groundwork for reacquiring the rifles.
Now obsolete for military purposes, primarily because of its eight-round fixed capacity, the rifle has since become more of a collector’s item, though the CMP has competitive shoots for the M1 Garand.
The CMP started received the Garands in late January or early February and now is engaged in the process of preparing them for sale. That requires cleaning, inspecting, rebuilding as needed and test firing each M1. Sale price will be determined by each rifle’s condition after it is rehabilitated.
“We’ve already begun on the Turkish rifles,” CMP Chief Operating Officer Mark Johnson told a writer for another NRA website. “They’re already filtering into the system and there are some on the racks for sale now.” Apparently neither country added any marks on the rifles, so the repatriated guns are not distinguishable from any other M1 Garand, Johnson said.
Meanwhile, the Secretary of the Army is releasing the 1911s to the CMP, too. Those pistols will be available for sale on a lottery basis.
Federal law authorizes the CMP to sell designated surplus military rifles, parts and ammunition to qualified U.S. citizens “for marksmanship.” The revenue from CMP sales is used to fund operations and programs and to supplement a permanent endowment. For eligibility requirements, check out the CMP website.