German Walther P38 Pistol

German Walther P38 Pistol

Usage conditions apply
Physical Description
German Walther P38 pistol, 9 mm.
General History
The Carl Walther Company began development of a new military pistol in the mid-1930s to replace the WW I Luger design. In 1938, the Werhmacht adopted Walther's design and called it the "Pistole 38." The pistol went into full production by mid-1940 and became standard issue in the World War II. Although never as famous as the Luger pistol, the P38 was issued to far more troops.
Object Name
Other Terms
pistol; Firearms; Center Fire; 9 Mm; Rifled
Place Made
Physical Description
steel (overall material)
wood (overall material)
overall: 5 3/4 in x 8 1/4 in x 1 1/2 in; 14.605 cm x 20.955 cm x 3.81 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
U.S. Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Alcohol and Tobacco Tax
World War II
The Great Depression and World War II
See more items in
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Price of Freedom
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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I own a Walther P38 which my grand uncle brought back after the war. He captured a German officer a confiscated his gun. It includes the leather holster and clip. Not sure what I'm going to do with it, ,my son is a police officer, maybe pass it along to him. It's a very nice artifact or heirloom to have.
How does the Museum come into possession of an item in the collection of WWII German artifacts? Do people just bring them in?

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