Gunner’s Journal

The 1911 Worlds Finest Handgun!

S&W Model 19

Posted by Gunner on December 8, 2006

This is my oldest gun. I have had it for 28 years. I must say it’s the most accurate gun I own. Of course back in the early 1970’s when this was made more hand work went into each gun. Plus, I’ve shot a revolver more than any other gun. The trigger is fantastic and is equal to guns that have been customized these days. This is my favorite gun and will never be sold or traded. I carried it on duty for many years until we went to semi-autos in the late 1980’s. I don’t shoot it as much as I used to but I’ll shoot it probably 400 rounds per year. I could probably shoot it as much as I used to and not hurt it but not wanting to take any chances I’ll go easy on it. It has the old style pinned barrel with recessed cylinder to encase the entire round. I wish S&W had never changed this feature. It’s not that the new guns are better without it. On the contrary it was a cost cutting measure and nothing more. The same goes for the recessed cylinder. Just a great old gun you can always depend on!

Check this beauty out! A good friend of mine owns this nickel model 19. He’s a police officer in Georgia. I would try and talk him out of it but that will never happen:-) It’s an older one that is the kind you never get rid of. When the great Border Patrol officer Bill Jordan got S&W to make the model 19 they hit a home run that will always be a very viable defensive gun in spite of all the semi autos dominating the market. The model 19 has great balance and very natural in the way it points. It comes on target from the draw most every time. For those that believe in some of the old tactics you can draw from the hip at the three yard line and shoot from the hip and nail the ten ring with ease. As far as the 357 goes it has a 97% plus one shot stop rating which no other handgun tops in any caliber. That’s shooting the 125 grain JHP. If you ever get a chance at a model 19 especially an older one grab it you just can’t go wrong with this gun!

Before and after photo of a 2 1/2 inch model 19 refinished in DuraCoat.

If you love the Model 19 or are just curious to learn more about them this is the book to get. Written by Bill Jordan it is out of print but some searching should find you one. Finding one that’s autographed will be very hard. I got my copy back in 1980. It covers information on gunfighting of course and a few encounters he had. There is also information on how the model 19 came about because of his work with S&W. Notice how huge his hands are holding his model 19! This book also gives you some insight into Bill Jordan himself. It’s a very interesting read.

6 Responses to “S&W Model 19”

  1. David Barnes said

    Just found your site the other day. Really enjoy it.
    Glad to see a blog on the Mod. 19.
    This was my first handgun when I was “of legal age” at 21.
    I let my Dad have my mod. 19 several years later
    for his home defense weapon and someone broke in
    his house one day while he was visiting me at my
    house and stole the gun. I was devastated to say the least. I agree with all of your statements regarding this gun. Keep up the good work. Thanks

  2. Gunner said


    That’s great and I’m glad you enjoyed the article. It’s about the best overall revolver around that’s for sure. If ours was stolen I would be beside myself!


  3. Bob Ervin said

    I’ve owned a Model 19-3 since the early 1970’s when Bill Jordan was one of my instructors at Camp Perry Ohio. In 72 I was in a one week NRA class of police officers from all over the US on how to be a Police Firearms Instructor. The 19 is all that you say but, if you can get ahold of a 19-2 grab it. I have fired several and these were the most accurate of them all. I think that the dash 2 was a limited production run and the 19-3 was when they went into full production.

  4. Gunner said

    I do keep an eye out for one but man they are hard to find:-)

  5. John said

    Hey Gunner, I just recenlty returned from my second tour to Iraq and I wanted to buy a revolver for home defense. I was lucky enough to find a Model 19 at a small gun store in town. It is by far the best gun i have ever shot and I’ve shot a bunch of them. Definitely better than any of the glocks or xd’s my friends bought.
    – John

  6. Gunner said

    There ya go John! That’s the best home defense gun there is. I carried one for many years on duty prior to our going to semi autos. Thanks for your service!!! My son is over there now.


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