Reifgraber Union Automatic Pistol for 32 S&W Rimmed Revolver Ammo (Video)
Russ Chastain 11.28.15
This unique little pistol came about early in the development of semi-automatic pistols, being marketed circa 1910-1912. And as all pistol devotees know, that was around the time John Browning’s 45 pistol was being adopted by the USA’s military and designated the 1911.
One odd thing: it was designed for use with a rimmed revolver cartridge (32 S&W). And if you wanted to shoot 32 ACP (an actual pistol round), you’d need to procure a special magazine.
Designed by Austrian-born sometime-anarchist Joseph Joachim Reifgraber, this little popper was sold by the Union Firearms Company out of Toledo, Ohio.
To say that it wasn’t a commercial success would be putting it mildly, which is why we see it featured in a Forgotten Weapons video. The highest known serial number is 88 (unless this one is 99 rather than 66), and it’s believed that no more than 100 of them were ever made.
If you’re interested in firearms mechanics, this video is well worth a watch. This action is interesting, to say the least.