Here is an update on what I've found out about Mr. Harpe.
I found a gentleman online who knew Mr. Harpe. He said Harpe had a gunsmith/locksmith business on the eastern edge of Tampa, Florida near the Union Railroad Station. One of the things he was known for was accurizing the M1911 pistol. He started doing this in the 1930's. One of the ways he did this was he produced his own barrel bushing. If anyone is interested I'll take my barrel bushing out and try to take some better pictures of it. However, you can tell from the pictures I have already posted it is definitely not a GI bushing he modified. The mainspring housing is though. You can see where the lanyard loop was cut off and it was checkered to match the front strap checkering.
In searching the internet I found an article published on March 23, 1957 that states Harpe is one of the three outstanding gunsmiths in the country. The article is not about 1911's though. Here is a link to that article.http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=8 ... 95,3761706
I also received a response from the "American Rifleman" and the lady who did the research could not find an article specifically about Harpe but did find two articles he wrote for them. One article ran in April 1942 on "Handgun Trigger Pulls". The other article ran in July 1942 on "Revamping the 45 Colt". Unfortunately she said their hard copies of these volumes are very fragile and could not send me a copy. There is also a possibility of there being an article about Mr. Harpe but researching their old records is difficult. The gentleman who knew Mr. Harpe said there was an article because he had a copy of it and actually gave it to Mr. Harpe in 1972 because Harpe did not have a copy.
The more I find out the more it seems Mr. Harpe could have been one of the forefathers of 1911 pistolsmiths and his work was forgotten over time.
If anybody else has any information or copies of those old articles I would love to read them. I really enjoy the history of these old pistols and the men who worked on them.