U.S. Carbines in Germany and Austria

This Website
About Us

I purchased my U.S. M1 Carbine without a clue as to it's history, or the history of any M1 carbines. I bought it to shoot, and pass it on to my son. I knew I had an Underwood M1 carbine from the markings on the barrel and receiver. I'd noticed the last 4 digits of the serial number were etched on the top of the bolt, and on several other parts. Not knowing any better, I thought this was done by the U.S. manufacturer during WWII. I'd also noticed on the bottom of the trigger housing 4 more numbers, and the letters LGKNÖ.

Out of curiosity I started reading several books and searching the internet. I found a few small blurbs of M1 carbines that went to the Bavarian police after WWII having the last 4 digits of the serial number on various parts, and that this was not done by any American manufacturer. But, Bavaria put the agency type on the M1 carbines they used. Mine didn't have this. I did not find anything about the letters LGKNÖ.

I e-mailed a friend of mine who lives in Bavaria and works for the Bavaria Police, asking if he knew what the letters LGKNÖ meant. He responded: LandesGendarmerieKommando NiederÖsterreich, the Austrian Gendarmerie in the Austrian province/state of Lower Austria. My carbine wasn't used by the Bavaria police, it was used by the Austrians. More correctly, a U.S. M1 Carbine used by American troops during WWII, and after the war ended, it was amongst many U.S. M1 carbines given and/or sold to the German or Austrian police for law enforcement.

I could not find any information about U.S. M1 carbines having been used by the Austrians. The information I found for Germany mentioned only Bavaria. It wasn't long before I discovered what was being identified as the "Bavarian Carbines", were actually U.S. M1 carbines that had been used during and after the American Occupation of Austria and Germany, and Bavaria was only one of five separate regions within the American Occupation Zone that used them.

My personal interests have included a strong interest in American history and its preservation, the sporting and self defense use of small arms (especially with my son), and an obsession with research and/or investigations born during a 20 year career in law enforcement as a police officer working street level assignments, now retired. My career had provided me with the opportunity to get to know officers from various agencies from around the world, including my Bavarian counterpart.

I had stumbled upon a need that just met a person very interested in researching and documenting the answers.

OK, so what about the "Us" in About Us? There's no way I can do this alone. The M1 carbines you see on this website, the information you read, frankly, the entire website, is a cooperative effort by many people. From many different nations. I volunteered to be a researcher and coordinator of the information, and provided the venue for it to happen.

A Note About the Accuracy of the Information on this Website

If Larry, Moe, and Knarley Joe witness the same event inevitably all three will offer a different recollection of that event. Varying perceptions and perspectives are part of being human. If Larry authors a book about the event, John Q. Public often promotes Larry to the status of more of an expert than Moe and Joe. Inevitably other authors will quote Larry's book, then other authors will quote those books. Because these books list their sources it is often automatically assumed the authors are good researchers and their sources are accurate. This is how we end up with history books presenting one perspective and one person's perception as if it's a collective assessment of the original event. What happens if Larry inadvertently and honestly made a mistake? If you spend some time contemplating this situation it's not difficult to question the accuracy of everything that has ever been written. Keep this in mind whenever you read anything, including this website.

Since my background is relevant as to the research I do and what you read on this website, I feel I need to include a little of it here. I have been involved in law enforcement investigations for over 34 years. These years include years of working CSI, major narcotics violators, organized crime, and best of all, many years as a street cop. Add a few years as a sergeant. I am retired from law enforcement, but not investigations. The past 18 years I've researched genealogy for a group of researchers and specialized in adoption searches (please don't ask). I'm currently a licensed private investigator and conduct research and investigations for several major corporations and two professional sports teams.

The stories of Larry, Moe, and Knarley Joe are three perspectives and perceptions that share a common theme. That theme is something to corroborate with historical documents, the work of authors, government records, and many other resources. Finding Larry, Moe, Knarley Joe, their living siblings and/or descendants, and these other resources, is something I've been doing a long time. I have no college degree.

All of this said, I am human and as hard as I try not too, I make mistakes. If you find one, please contact me and bring it to my attention. The volume of work involved in doing this research and sharing it is substantial. I do it because I enjoy it. I make no money from it. I do not like the word "expert". My experience has been there are far too many experts and not enough masters. I am neither. The more I learn, the more I realize just how much I don't know.

This website does not contain a long list of sources for the information herein. Many sources are indicated throughout the website, however, I don't want to clutter it with references whose accuracy I cannot personally verify. Enjoy what you read here but realize it's the effort of humans. Conflicting information is routine, it's the theme they share that usually provides a clue to what really happened.