I have any single shot I need information on. On the left side it is stamped special. On top of the barrel is stamped 12 gauge. The only other stamping on the gun is the letters EO and a 3 digit number. Any information will help thanks.
Meriden was owned by Sears, and sold to New England Westinghouse in 1916. Stevens was acquired by New England Westinghouse also in 1916 and was then sold to Savage in 1920. The Meriden factory continued to make guns until 1918 for New England Westinghouse. Stevens is still in business as subsidary of Savage. I would say your gun is a Meriden gun, but the design was kept or slightly changed after the merger of Stevens and Meriden. One of the differences I see in the pictures are the location of the pins in the receiver of these two guns.
The letters "EO" mean something and it is indicative of Stevens manufacture- but in 40+ years I have never been able to discern or find out what those letter mean.
I have a huge list of Stevens used letter prefixes and suffixes and have never found any substantive correlations.
I done some searching and the Stevens shotguns I seen looking indentical to mine. The only difference is mine don't have the Stevens name, city and state stamped in it like the photos I have seen. Just the word SPECIAL on the side and 12 gauge on the top back of the barrel. Does this rule it out of being a Stevens?
Here is some of the photos of a Stevens I found on the web.
It does have that little I with a circle like in the above picture.
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