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Old October 8, 1999, 12:04 AM   #1
Edward Dixon
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Join Date: September 13, 1999
Posts: 5
Can anyone recommend some worthwhile books on
Old West firearms?
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Old October 8, 1999, 08:31 AM   #2
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Join Date: October 12, 1998
Location: Missouri
Posts: 1,986
Are you looking more towards reference books or books that have old style firearms as a major element of the storyline?
I have the complete NRA Firearms Classics Library (so far), which is reprinting quite a few of the classic authors. Some of the books were written when the weapons of the old west were still in daily usage, and not in a recreational way. So far it includes;
Guns of the Old West - Charles Edward Chapel
Firearms of the Confederacy - Claud E. Fuller and Richard D. Steuart
Textbook of Pistols and Revolvers - Julian S. Hatcher
The Gun and its Development - W.W. Greener
Shotguns By Keith - Elmer Keith
The Rifle In America - Phillip B. Sharpe
The Muzzle-loading Cap Lock Rifle - Ned H. Roberts
Gunsmithing - Roy F. Dunlap
Firearms Curiosa - Lewis Winant
Hatcher's Notebook - Julian S. Hatcher
African Rifles & Cartridges - John Taylor
A History of the Colt Revolver - Charles T. Haven and Frank A. Belden
The Bullet's Flight - F.W. Mann
The Book of the Springfield - Edward C. Crossman
Pistols and Revolvers - Walter H.B. Smith
The Kentucky Rifle - Captain John G.W. Dillin
Hope to end up with the complete set eventually (if they don't drain my bank account that is )

A few of my other reference works include;
Guns On The Early Frontiers; A History of Black Powder Weapons from Colonial Times to the Mexican War - Carl P. Russel
Guns of the Wild West; Firearms of the American Frontier 1849-1917 - George Markham
An Introduction To Civil War Small Arms - Earl J. Coates and Dean S. Thomas
Pictorial History of the Rifle - G.W.P. Swenson
Identifying Old U.S. Muskets, Rifles and Carbines - Colonel Arcadi Gluckman
United States Martial Pistols & Revolvers - Arcadi Gluckman
Firearms Curiosa - Lewis Winant (another copy)
Marlin Firearms A History of the Guns and the Company That Made Them - Lt.Col. William S. Brophy, USAR ret.
The World's Fighting Shotguns - Thomas F. Swearengen CWO USMC ret.
I have quite a few others also but they don't
necessarily deal in the old west.
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Old October 8, 1999, 08:57 AM   #3
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Join Date: October 12, 1998
Location: Missouri
Posts: 1,986
Forgot one Firearms Classics Library book;
Oddnance Went Up Front - Roy F. Dunlap
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Old October 8, 1999, 09:35 AM   #4
Jack Straw
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Join Date: July 26, 1999
Location: Georgia
Posts: 362
If you're looking for info on shooting old style guns, check out Mike Venturino's books: Shooting Colt Single Actions (pretty well covers everything there is to know about shooting Peacemakers), Sixguns of the Old West (pretty much covers all other pistols from that era), and I don't think it is out yet, but he has one in the works that covers lever actions.

I found the first two to be very informative.

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Old October 8, 1999, 11:00 AM   #5
4V50 Gary
Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 19,390
Krause publications has a relatively new book which I found to be very definitive:

"A Study of Colt Conversions and Other Percussion Revolvers" by R. Bruce McDowell.

Mr. McDowell discusses how Colt and others converted their (Un)Civil War cap 'n ball revolvers to take cartridges. A lot of those guns were apparently floating around well into the 1870s.

Vigilantibus et non dormientibus jura subveniunt

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