Bolte & Anschütz – Challenger A

System: Kipplauf
Maker: Bolte & Anschutz (D)
Model: Challanger-A
Caliber: 4mm flob.
Collection: private

 A very special pistol indeed! One of our visitors mr. Ray Ethridge (USA) send me a request for identification. It appears his father mr. Rudolph Ethridge found it in a open safe in a third floor room of a deserted house in Fürstenfeldbruck (Germany) in December 1945. It was wrapped in red cloth (the one seen in the photograph). He was sent to the town to provide security for the mayor during a town celebration. The house was damaged in the war and deserted as they took shelter in it to wait out a storm (he was a Motorcycle Policeman in the US Army).

It appears to be a Kipplauf pistol Model (Challenger-A) made by Bolte & Anschutz from Zella Mehlis in Germany in calber 4mm flobert. It is a single shot pistol and were made in either flobert or .22 calibre. The design was modern for its time and some suggest it resembles the self loading pistols of that era like the models made by Walter. The company went out of business in 1945.

The stamp on the frame with the letters means the pistol was made by Bolte & Anschutz from Zella Mehlis. The figure 2 would most probably meant a production number. The letters RL are – most likely – the initials of the maker or factory where they were made. The number 2665 is its serial number. I don’t know it the records still exist or not. What I do know it that most records were destroyed at the end of WWII. Many of these target pistols and rifles were actually thrown on a heap, set ablaze and run over by a tank. I have seen the photographs of it in the museum. The ones that survived are the ones private people had tucked away and hidden, or taken by soldiers as souvenirs. (Good thing they did – or else all would have been lost!)