A Pair of Victories
Since 1939, Smith & Wesson had been shipping five inch M&P revolvers in .38S&W to Great Britain on a lend/lease program. These are commonly known as 38-200s or K200s.
With the U.S. declaration of war, all production was stopped except for those revolvers, and the four inch Victory Model for American troops.
These two Victory Models I have pictured were found in pawn shops. The top one was purchased from Dave for $300. The lower Victory revolver was purchased from Amber for $150. It was not nearly so nice as the top one, and required a bit of work to get it back into an authentic representation of what it once was.
Victory revolvers were once plentiful in the marketplace, despite an agreement between S&W and the US government that they would not be sold as surplus. It is not uncommon for them, in particular the lend/lease guns, to be found with cut down barrels, Franzenite grips and a cheap chrome finish. Unmolested Victory Models still exist, although they are becoming harder to find. If a person wants to speculate on future appreciation of a firearm, the Victory Model is one of today's safest bets.
More information on the S&W Victory Model