Thanks for the great info Shooter - since I posted I called Ruger and was told for $10 they would send me a letter on the history of the gun from the factory, I sent it yesterday - I will let you know what is says.
Got some time today to get in a little practice. If y'all recall, my new SR9E was shooting low and left, so I built a rest and did some sight adjustment a week or so back.
Went out today without the rest, just freehanding, and was pleased with my performance. 9 shots from 7yds, using Winchester white box fmj. A couple flyers (me ) but 7 of 9 were in the gray, 2 in the black in a pretty tight group for an old guy. Fairly rapid fire, POI and POA seem well aligned. So no more messing with the sights.