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Old November 22, 2020, 03:25 AM   #26
Scorch
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A lot of old Colt SAA's became Hollywood props
Could be, but more than likely those prop guns were Great Westerns or some other "kinda looks like a Colt" clones. Sometimes they would screw a piece of pipe to the side of a revolver to make it look like a single action ejector rod housing. Colts were always expensive, outside of Hollywood not many cowboys could muster the money to lay out for the good stuff. Bill Ruger built a whole business making single action revolvers for people who souldn't afford Colts. Lots of pictures of late 1800s-early 1900s cowboys with everything from Iver Johnsons, US Cycle Works, Harrington & Richards, etc, for posing with. Cowboys are migrant seasonal workers, after the Indians were rounded up there's not a lot of use for a gun that cost as much as a cowboy makes in a month unless you were going to go into some illegal business.
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Old November 22, 2020, 11:22 AM   #27
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Honestly, the modern cowboy would probably have a GLOCK and a AR. Guns were used mostly for keeping pest animals and predators away from cattle. Additionally, most were poor. The gun that won the West wasn't a lever action and it was a six shooter. It was a milsurp front stuffer like a Enfield 1853 or a Springfield 1861 that was converted into a single shot shotgun.

That was capable of defending hearth and home, putting meat on the table, etc... especially since your average person wasn't hunting deer everyday but small game like rabbit and game bird.
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Old November 23, 2020, 05:12 AM   #28
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Contrary to popular belief cowboys back in the day didn't own guns. If guns were needed they were supplied by the ranch they worked for. Guns weren't worn all the time. Look at old pics of cowboys actually working and you will see no guns. Of the ones that did own guns they were small and cheap. Farmers were the ones likely to have a cut down Springfield made into a shotgun. I have seen a lot of these.
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Old November 25, 2020, 10:09 AM   #29
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I grew up on the family ranch. My dad carried a 44 mag super blackhawk in a western rig. When I was young I carried a Ruger mk2: crappy nylon holster, at 12 I got a Ruger redhawk 44 in a western rig. When I turned 40, I bought myself a made to my soec wilson combat. I carry it in a texas ranger rig. Horse hide belt mag pouch and holster. Trimmed in elephant. Kinda fancy but comfy on a horse, in a car. Everywhere
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Old November 25, 2020, 09:55 PM   #30
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I can see pounding a flat thumbtack into wood w/a butt but not a nail. That's a sin.
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Old November 26, 2020, 12:42 PM   #31
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I have farm/ranch right up the street from me. Nary a horse to be seen, but side by sides and 4WD are all over the place. Only horses I see out here anymore are someone's saddle horse walking up the side of the road, and generally the rider is unarmed, though once or twice I'll see someone with what appears to be a single action revolver. Of course I don't visit every single ranch or farm out here and this is only anecdotal at best - since we went Constitutional Carry ten years ago most people opt for concealed since there is no cost/BS involved any more.
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Old November 29, 2020, 10:43 AM   #32
shafter
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Cowboys may not have made much but they had a free place to sleep and free food and few opportunities to spend money unless they were in town. As long as they were smart they could have afforded a decent firearm much the same as a person could today if they didn't have a mortgage or car payment.

The issue is that they were probably much like people today. Money in, money out.
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Old November 30, 2020, 09:42 AM   #33
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I think it comes down to the keyword....."cowboy". Not "Ranch hand", "farm hand", "herdsman", etc, etc. While the portrayal of the "wild west" may not be 100% accurate, real cowboys lived on their horse and spent time in areas where there was a threat of local natives, bears, cougars and wolves had to protect the stock they guarded, from the same. This took a firearm of some kind. They also for the most part took advantage of what they could shoot to supplement their food supply. I sure what they carried or if they carried was as varied then as it is today with modern day gun owners.
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