I reckon I'd take a 1911 .45 ACP, a Browning 9mm, and an S&W Model 642 (pre-lock). These would handle most of my perceived needs and since they are not considered "firearms", I could get a .22 conversion for the 1911 and Hi Power.
Browning HP with my Pachmayr .22 unit
Ruger Single-Six convertible .22LR/.22Mag
.357 revolver -- any of several, but if I'm 'living off the land', a Ruger Blackhawk with the 9mm cylinder for maximum commonality of ammunition. I can then use .38s, .357s, and 9s, plus all of the .22s. As a defensive handgun, a classic Smith like the 27 or 28. I could do nearly as well with a Ruger Security 6.
Thanks for all the great responses. Like most of you, I would select a 1911 and a J frame (probably a 649). My third gun would probably have to be a Glock 17.
That would give me a small collection of a classic (1911), a concealable (649) and reliability/longevity (Glock 17).
Again, thanks for the responses.
I would quickly pick The 9mm FN High Power & Colt Government .45, I would also quickly pick one of the same platforms for my third pistol as well, but it's real hard tryin' to pick between a .40 High Power or a 1911 in Super .38.