Guns, Firearms, Projectile Weapon Sports/Paragon CS 12 ga


I have a Paragon CS side by side, 12 ga.  It has the serial number T36,xxx which I found when you open the breach.  It is on the underside of the barrel and also again on the lower.  When you close the action, both serial numbers almost line up perfectly.  Both numbers match I found the capital letter "I" with the circle around it on the under side in front of the trigger guard.  I know this Paragon was also made by several other companies.  How do you know which one of the companies made this particular shotgun?  This shotgun came from an estate sale in Wayne, IL, which is a wealthy and old historic area.  Al Capone had a hideout not far away.  It doesn't matter to me if this is worth anything or not, I just love the history aspect.

Hello Rich.
  Baker Gun Company and Stevens Arms, both made a SXS Model Paragon. A Baker would have been manufactured around 1900 and would be highly engraved, where a Stevens would be plain. The T36,xxx puts it in the Stevens manufacturing genre. If the "I" inside the circle indicates the year in which it was manufactured, (A=1949;B=1950: etc.) then your shotgun was born in 1957 as a Model 311 or 5100. Serial numbers were not required until 1968, so the T36,xxx was simply an assembly number. Many companies, including Stevens, used this system of numbers to keep track of parts for that individual firearm.
  I'm afraid Al Capone was already 'pushing up daisies' by 1957. However, I'm sure he had plenty of offspring running around those hills at that time.

Guns, Firearms, Projectile Weapon Sports

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Charles Gage


I can answer questions dealing with firearms and their development due to western expansion. I can answer most questions about any firearms of the world manufactured after the Civil War(1868 - present. I can offer safety warnings about these. I can offer opinions and the reasons behind these. I can also answer questions about Iver Johnson firearms. I can identify by pictures most firearms. If your question involves a firearm you have access to, please include a good quality photo with your question.


I have been at the study of firearms and their use since my first issue of Field and Stream in 1962.At that time I was completely devoted to rifles, but over the years I have experienced the thrill of the hunt with handguns, shotguns and of course rifles. I moved from Oklahoma to New Mexico in 1972 and, since, I have taken numerous game and non-game animals with all firearms (cannons excluded)including blackpowder muzzleloading rifles,shotguns and handguns. My favorite handgun for large non-game animals, such as feral hogs, is my Uberti replica of a 1847 Colt Walker. Very heavy, but accurate.

I am a 1973 high school graduate. Junior and senior year I developed a class on Wildlife Depredation and Conservation of our Rocky Mountain states. My specialty was the brown bear.

Awards and Honors
New Mexico Hunter Safety Program Instructor 15 year award.

©2016 All rights reserved.