Remington 9mm BL 25 round export box

This box seems to be the most common 25 round box by the major US manufacturers before WWII. Or, it is at least the most commonly encountered one in the US. Most interested US collectors seem to have one.

Below are the updated boxes known to exist and the date codes that have been documented.I will update this as more information is available.

Type 1: Probably only used in 1914
image image

  • English back label
  • 3 lines of text at bottom of label
  • Medium size “REMINGTON ARMS UNION METALLIC CARTRIDGE CO"

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Type2: Probably used from 1915 and perhaps 1916
image image

  • English & Spanish back label
    • 3 lines of text at bottom of label
    • Medium size “REMINGTON ARMS UNION METALLIC CARTRIDGE CO”List item

Type 3: Occurs dated 1916 & 1917 on 6.35mm & 7.65mm Browning but only with 1923 dated box (2 known) in 9mmBL stamped OILPROOF on the box. One box dated 1920 and an undated box (shown below)
image
• English & Spanish back label
• 4 lines of text at bottom of label
• Large size “REMINGTON ARMS-UNION METALLIC CARTRIDGE CO"

Type 4: The only known 9mmBL nox is dated 1935. The same style appears on a 380 box dated 1933 which lacks any Kleanbore markings.
image image
• • English & Spanish back label
• 5 lines of text at bottom of label
• Small size “REMINGTON ARMS COMPANY"
• Trademark registration data on middle-left
• Overlabel for Remington Kleanbore
With help, and images from Forum members, I am beginning to understand these boxes. I suspect that Remington never packed this caliber in 50 round boxes. Their manufacturereing log indicate they first produced this caliber in Jan 1914 specifically for Export. Has anyone ever seen a 50 round box of Remington 9mm BL???

It appears that Remington produced there rounds in 1914 & 1915 or so. Then they produced a second batch in the early 1920s, and a third batch with new labels in the 1930s. My guess is that, after the first production, sales were low enough that there were long stretches before they set up the 9mmBL line again. Just speculation.

This information is based on only six boxes. I know there are a lot more boxes out there which will either confirm the information above, or change the date ranges or even add new box styles.

All information on these cartridges is appreciated.

If you have boxes or images of other 9mmBL 25 rd boxes by Remington or by any other US company, please send me a copy or post it here.

I am also interested in images and information on pre-II US autopistol ammunition packed in 25 rd boxes, regardless of caliber. I have photos of Remington 25rd boxes for both 25ACP and 32ACP, but there are undoubtedly different styles in both calibers, and the date codes are important to identify the approximate dates of production.

Thanks for any help!

Cheers,
Lew

Lew - Firstly, I would assume that most of these 25-round 9 mm Browning Long boxes were originally overseas. Considering he scarcity of Webley and Le Française pistols in this caliber in the United States and their low production numbers, and the scarcity of the FN-Browning Pistol with, I would assume from numbers found, very few coming to the US before WWI and maybe not so many even then - they have always been scarce in this country but not so scarce as the Webley’s and Le Française pistols of this caliber. I have two different printings of the 25-round Rem-UMC box labels, differing not in content, as far as I can note, but in letter font, particularly on the top label, and both do not mention being for any pistol other than the Browning.

One box appears to be unmarked as to any lot or date code. The does appear to have been a entry of some sort on the top label, in black ink, but it has been almost entirely rubbed off. I would call it scrapped off, but the box is not badly “ruffled” there. From the color of ink, size of letters as determined to the best of my ability, and the location, I am not sure what the marking was, or how it got there.

The second box has the code on the back label, in purple ink and much larger numbers than the eradicated ones on the other box could have ever been, and is: G21EAN in serifed letters and numbers.

The only other of these 25-round Rem-UMC boxes I have is for the 7.65 m/m Browning (.32 Auto. Colt) (typed as it appears on two lines on the top box label). It is in purple ink like the other 9 mm Long box, and about the same size letters, but is so faded that I cannot even tell which way is right side up.

All of these boxes have the back label in English and Spanish, but I am uncertain to the significance of that, as I have some mid-early 50-round boxes from REM-UMC, also with the other labels all in English as as these mentioned boxes. I have to believe that they just decided to do that so they could export the boxes to Latin America (perhaps to countries where the quantity of ammunition per box was not regulated, or was not simply atune to the European practice of supply pistol ammo in 25-round boxes commercially, perhaps to make prices more attractive, or due to legal considerations). Hard to know with so many different countries to think about.

Regarding “ones that didn’t leave the country,” or “ones that did go overseas”, seventy-five years after the fact I don’t see how that could be documented, either way, as ammunition, due to various factors, migrates all over the place. Boxes in the US could be merchandise that was in other countries and returned here in various ways for various reasons, and the reverse could be true as well. The scarcity of these boxes, at least in auto pistol calibers which are the only ones I am remotely qualified to speak of, would speak to the opinion that all or at least a huge proportion of them went overseas. But again, any opinion on that, in my view, would be nothing more than a wild guess, including my own opinion.

Just my thoughts on these. Sorry that my boxes like these are not in top shape, hence hard to determine these lot or date numbers.

John M.

John,
Many thanks! I an sending you a seperate email. Your 9mm BL box was made in the first half of 1933.

Based on my Remington 9mm Luger Dogbone boxes documented, the English & Spanish back was dropped about 1935. I believe all my pre-Dogbone boxes all had the English & Spanish back labels.

Watching other collectors I see guys in Europe finding US, pre WWII 25 round boxes in 32ACP, 380 and even 45ACP pretty regularly, but I haven’t seen any here in the US. On the other hand, I can’t recall ever seeing a Remington 25rd 9mmBL box in Europe. I can’t comment on which of these have been seen in South America, and how often. Perhaps Fede can give us some insights. I suspect many of these 25 round boxes went to South America, but that is only a guess.

It was the relative abundance of the 9mmBL boxes in the States when, as you indicate they should be rare, and the relative abundance of other calibers in these 25 round boxes in Europe that made me suspect there must be some reason for this unexpected distribution, the export issue was just a guess.By “relative abundance” I only mean not rare. I agree that the huge majority of these boxes went overseas, but can’t understand why the 9mmBL boxes seem to be found in the US while the other calibers don’t!!! Perhaps this topic will surface enough information to clarify this. I am working off a very small set of data.There is another US collector of autopistol cartridges who has a number of these boxes who can probably provide more meaningful information.

Cheers,
Lew

Lew - a lot of 9 mm Browning Long came in from Sweden after they had exported the Husqvarna copies of the Browning 9 mm BL pistol, unfortunately. Due to a lack of ammo when the guns came in, many, many of them were ruined by conversion to .380 auto, a very poor conversion from any 9 mm BL caliber pistol, in my view.

Also, a lot of 9 mm Browning Long came in from a South American country. I never found out for sure which one. I don’t think it was Argentina, although I seem to remember one of my 25-round 9BL boxes came from there for me; the other I did find in America. Other than those types, I am not sure I could say that even an abundance of 9 mm BL boxes are in the USA. I agree they are not rare, but would not say they are in abundance. I have never seen many in 55 years of looking, relative to the number of even fairly scarce boxes of U.S. Manufacture and calibers.

When you say pre-WWII 25-round boxes are found pretty regularly in Europe, are you talking about US boxes. If so, why don’t any come here??? I have never had my eyes on an old, for example Remington or Winchester pre-WWII, .45 caliber 25-round box, although I know they do exist. I would class them as rare anywhere. About the same for old US-made .380 boxes. Surprised to hear that they are regularly found in Europe. Aside from a few countries - Italy, Belgium, Spain - possibly others - that caliber has always taken back seat to the .32 auto, for some reason, and all the countries where it was popular (sometimes restricted to military and police only), had major ammunition makers, so there would not be a big need for importing from the US.

Of course today, 20-round and 25-round boxes, and about any other quantity from 5 rounds to 200 rounds per box are common in almost all pistol calibers, not just in all the “here today, gone tomorrow” brands, but in major brands as well.

If you can ever find in Europe a 25-round pre-WWII American Commercial .45 box, get it for me if it is not the cost of a good used car.

thanks for the info on when the Spanish part of the Remington back labels was dropped. I wonder when they started that. I have many UMC and UMC early boxes in various calibers that do not have it, but I do believe it wasn’t just on boxes exported to Spanish-speaking countries. In that case, you DO see too many of them in the USA for that to be the case.

John Moss

John,
The info on the Swedish guns is appreciated. There could have been a bunch of unsold Remington ammo that came in about the same time, or it could have been with the guns from South America, since you apparently found one of your boxes came from South America. I will have to go back and look at where those guns came from. I think you and I did a pretty through job of that when we were researching the article with the 4 labels, some fake, on the same Austrian box of 9mmBL.

When I say regularly, I meant I see on average one or perhaps two a year, but not ones laying on a table for sale. On the other hand, I never see everything that is sold so I would probably miss some of them. It is usually someone showing me the interesting item they have gotten. The only 45ACP 25 round box I have seen was probably 3 years ago in Switzerland.

My red, round corner boxes from the 1920s that are handy have the two language back label, but I haven’t checked my single UMC 9mm Box. But, my 30 Luger UMC box and my 30 Luger red box with rounded corners dated 1919 both have only English. I may have to check all my 9mm red boxes to see if some of them are too early to not have the Spanish. The box styles don’t necessarly change at the same time for different calibers.

Thanks for the info.

Cheers,
Lew

umc 9mm box

Lew,

I have no 9 mm box from UMC, and only one “old” 9 mm box, which I think is one you describe as “red boxes” (I have no argument with that description). Mine is a lift-top, round-corner box for cartridges with truncated metal case bullet. It has the dual language back label.

I have a very few Remington-UMC boxes in other calibers that don’t have the dual-language label (English and Spanish) but for the most part, the Remington-UMC boxes I have do have the dual-language label, until the time it was discontinued completely.

My collection contains a fair number of UMC boxes from other auto pistol calibers, including a pretty scarce .45 A.C.P. box which would have to date from 1905 or later, and none of them have the half-Spanish back labels.

My single 9 mm Luger box is interesting in that it has two separate, and what I see as complete, date codes on the back, on right above the other, and in the same purple ink and letter font. They are (top) K7EAH and (bottom) K8EAN. I think it is the only case of this I have on any Remington box. Unfortunately, in 9 mm Luger, my Remington box collection prior to pretty modern times is the pits!

John Moss

John,
I have checked all my 9mm red, round corner boxes and my other 9mm round corner boxes (for HP loads) and they all have the English/Spanish back labels. My earliest dated box of this type is Sep 1912. The only older box is my UMC box dated Oct 1910 and it has an English only back label.

I suspect other calibers will fall into this general range.

Cheers,
Lew

John: I wonder if Venezuela wasn’t the user of the Browning 1903 pistol. I say this because I was told years ago by a friend who had had an opportunity to have a look at the contents of a property room in a police station in British Guiana during WW.2. In the property room he saw and was able to handle a Browning 1903, the first that had ever come his way.

It isn’t hard to imagine a felon who had acquired such a piece in Venezuela and then been caught with it next door. I’m sure the story of the presence of the pistol in British Guiana is authentic; the attempt at a Venezuelan connection is my own idea. Jack

Jack, It is hard to tell as the FN Browning Model 1903, Also known as Le Grand Modele and the Modele de Guerre, was sold in many countries commercially. There were FN Distributors for this pistol in France, Germany, The Netherlands, England, Sweden, Australia and New Zealand. Further Sweden purchased 10,000 of the pistols prior to receiving license to make them at Husqvarna, which began production of the m/07, as it was designated in Sweden, in 1917. The Russians purchased FN Model 1903s for several agencies of the Russian Government. There was also a contract with the Ottoman Empire, which have the crest of Sultan Abdul Hamid II on the top of the slide, Estonia purchased some, and there was both a Paraguayan and Salvadorian contract, each with their countries’ crests on the top of the slide.

I have no information on use by Venezuela, but because of worldwide commercial sales, it is certainly not impossible, but it would have been a very small number, not really relevant to ammunition production of that caliber, other than perhaps commercial cartridges from FN and Remington in the US.

Husqvarna actually sent about 100 of the Swedish made versions to Antioquia, Columbia in 1937, so between the earlier contracts from FN, and possible commercial sales as well, there certainly was a South American market for ammunition of the 9 mm Browning Long caliber.

John: After I posted the above I did a search and also found the reference to Colombia. Would be interesting to know how it got to British Guiana. Jack

Lew, About early comments in your examination of some of these codes in this thread, you said that a couple of lots from 1933 and 1935 showed a continuing demand for this ammunition. That should be no surprise considering the Paraguayan and Salvadorian contracts, the former from 1927 and the date of the second unknown, but likely not too far from the Paraguayan issue, not to mention commercial sales to South America, if made, or the 1937 supply of 1,000 Husqvarna pistols to Columbia. The demand for ammo would have gone past the 1933 and 1935 date-coded Remington cartridges, and perhaps been filled by Geco, RWS, FN, or other makers. While I have no specific information on other firearms in this caliber as to their numbers made, or any possible connection to any specific country other than France for the Le Française Pistol, and England and South Africa for the Two Webley versions of 9 mm BL pistols, it is not impossible that some of either pistol or both ended up in South America. Certainly, world-wide, there was some on-going need for ammunition, although certainly not nearly so great as some other calibers.

John Moss

It is interesting to mention that this cartridge was dropped from Remington catalogs and price lists in the late 20’s -apparently in 1929-, but you can still find it in export price lists from the 1930’s.

My latest is No. 16 dated June 1, 1935 (English language) that list the “9 m/m Long Browning Auto, Oil Proof, Kleanbore, M. C.”, and also include other obsolete cartridges not found in contemporary retail lists, like the 8 mm Pieper or the .320 and .380 Revolver. Another odd listing is the .44 S&W American noted in brackets as “.440 Nagant”, like it was called in Argentina.

Fede - that doesn’t surprise me. Probably one of the smallest markets for the 9 mm BL was the U.S.A. I have found any evidence that the FN “Grand Modele 1903” ever achieved any sort of popularity in the US or that there were many in this country. The Husqvarna version was basically unknown in the US until loads of surplus ones came from Sweden, probably in the late 1950s or early 1960s - I forget when - but they were mostly all converted very poorly to .380 Auto. The FN version in any variation were very hard to find. When I was collecting auto pistols in a fairly big way, all I ever had in my own collection was one of the contract pieces for the Turk Ottoman Empire. I never was able to find just a “plain vanilla” Model 1903 military or commercial version.

The Remington boxes for the 9 BL were never easy to find in the US. I have two different labels but both boxes are in mediocre to poor condition. It is just in the last three days, because of PMs regarding this thread, that I found out there were at least two variations of Remington dummy rounds in 9 BL caliber. I studied the cartridge intensely for a year, prior to writing a fairly definitive article on the cartridge, and didn’t know about these. I am hoping to get a photo of a known box of dummy Remington Rounds.

Besides Remington, prior to WWII as far as I can tell, only U.S.C.Co. made this cartridge. I have a tattered box top torn off an original box and it is for 25 rounds as well. I only have two variations of that cartridge, and one was pretty much unknown when I published the article. I am still, to this day, not sure about the What, When and Why of that variation, which is without the customary rolled mouth crimp and has a plain primer, not the normal US marked cup. Bill Woodin had the same round, and those were the only two I knew about, or still know about. There was simply almost no market in the USA for this caliber ammunition.

John Moss

I have received quite a few images of Rem-Umc 25 round boxes in 6.35mmB, 7.65mmB and 380. the Date codes on these have filled in the date information and the original post has been amended to show the probably date ranges on the four box styles.

Information on the other three major US manufacturers during this period has been very sketchy. USCCO is represented by the single box illustrated by John Moss in another post. I also have images of a 38 S&W box by Peters and a 9mm Luger box by Winchester, both 25 round. I had thought there would numerous 25rd boxes in a range of calibers from both of these countries. It appears I am wrong.

IF ANYONE HAS IMAGES OF 25 ROUND BOXES OF PISTOL CARTRIDGES BY WINCHESTER, PETERS OR USCCO, PLEASE CONTACT ME OR POST THEM AT THIS THREAD.

All assistance is appreciated.

Thanks,
Lew

Hi Lew,
For interest; Remington UMC 25 round box 9mm BL from the UK.





Many thanks Sam!!!

Another data point which is a great help. And, it is from the UK which is interesting.

The date is stamped upside down on the back of the box and appears to be L?W??? which would be August 1920. It is a Type 3 box, and nice because the side images are better than those I have from other boxes. It is also important because it is the earliest date I have, the other two are 1923, and both are overstamped OILPROOF.

I really appreciate your input.

Cheers,
Lew

This effort is coming along nicely. My thanks to all who have contributed.

I haven’t identified any new 9mm BL box styles, but have learned more about other US manufacturers of these boxes. John Moss posted a USCCO box on another thread and I can not find any other caliber that USCCO packed in 25 round boxes. Peters did use 25 round boxes, but apparently only in revolver calibers. Winchester did make labels in quite a few calibers between 1912 and 1915, but I have not been able to document a single actual box.

IF ANYONE HAS, OR HAS A PHOTO OF A WINCHESTER 25 ROUND BOX IN ANY PISTOL CALIBER, PLEASE POST IT OR LET ME KNOW!!!

There is no evidence that Western ever used 25 round pistol boxes. The closest they came is in their 1925 catalog when they offered a 20rd 30 Mauser box with the cartridges in clips.

Again, thanks for all the help!

Cheers,
Lew