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Old 8th March 2016, 07:14 PM   #1
dana_w
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Default Unusually Large Caliber (?) Percussion Target / Dueling Pistols c1860

For target / dueling pistols, this pair seems to have an unusually larger caliber .745 inches. The pistols are marked J. D. DOUGALL LONDON. Has anyone seen something similar, or other percussion pistols from the same maker after they opened their London office.

There is quite a bit of information online about the history of J. D. Dougall & Sons which was posted by a user named trw999 on the doublegunshop.com forum. Unfortunately the info is attributed to internetgunclub.com rather than the original sources.

All photos are copyright (c) 2016 Dana K. Williams, with all rights reserved

*************



Name John Dougall / Dougal
Other Names J & J Dougall; J D Dougall; J D Dougall & Sons
Address1 88 Trongate
Address2 177 Trongate
Address3 177 Trongate & 9 Argyll Arcade
Address4 52 Argyll Arcade and 177 Trongate
Address5 51-52 Argyll Arcade and 177 Trongate
Address6 23 Gordon Street
City/Town Glasgow
County Lanarkshire
State/Region/Province Scotland
Country United Kingdom
Trade Gunmaker
Other Address 59 St James's Street, London; 8 Bennett Street, St James's Street, London.
Dates 1760-1896

Notes

John Dougal (Dougall) (John (I))established his business in 1760, possibly at 88 Trongate, but it was not until 1808 that he

became a hammerman and purchased his admission as a burgess and guild brother. In 1816 he was recorded at this address as a

fishing rod maker. In 1818, he described himself as a needle and fish hook maker. In 1819 his son, James Dalziel Dougal

(James (I)), was born. In 1819 John (I) was admitted to the Incorporation as a fish-hook maker and his "essay" was to make

"a small steel opener". In 1826 he moved to 177 Trongate, and in 1828 he opened an additional shop at 9 Argyll Arcade where

he described himself as a fishing tackle maker.

In 1830 the business at 9 Argyll Arcade traded as J & J Dougall. At this time James (I) was only 11 years old, so it seems

that his partner must have been a relative, possibly a brother. In 1831 the business at 177 Trongate traded as John Dougall,

fish hook maker, but the business of J & J Dougall opened another shop at 52 Argyll Arcade where it traded as fishing and

fowling tackle makers. In about 1840 John (I) appears to have retired or died, as does his relative in the business, and it

was continued by James (I). From 1840 the firm described themselves as gunmakers, fishing & fowling tackle makers. From 1841

the business traded as James D Dougall and it seems their only premises were at 52 Argyll Arcade. At this time James was 22

years old and recently married to Janet (b.1818). In 1842 James' first son, John (John (II), was born, he was followed in

1844 by a daughter, Margaret, and in 1850 by a second son, James D (James (II)). In 1844 James (I) was admitted as a burgess

and guild brother. In 1845 he was admitted into the Incorporation as a fish-hook maker, his "essay" being "a square broach

or widener".

By 1848 the firm had acquired additional premises at 51 Argyll Arcade and James (I) described himself as a fishing tackle

maker and practical gunmaker. An advertisement at this time stated that the firm had been established in 1760 and offered

"an extensive assortment of Fowling pieces" and "in the workshop department every care is taken in the manufacturing of

guns, the best material only being used and superior workmen only employed"; "Guns restocked and bored to shoot close and

strong".
From 1850 the firm occupied 23 Gordon Street and traded as gun maker and fishing tackle manufacturer. An advertisement at

this date stated "Fowling pieces. Rifles etc. made to order to any style or pattern. and their shooting warranted, being

bored and tested on an unerring principle." In the 1851 census James and Janet were recorded living at 3 Cathcart Street.

James (I) was described as a fishing tackle maker employing 8 men, Janet was described (probably an error which actually

referred to James) as a gun maker employing 6 men. They were living with both sons and their daughter, Margaret. In 1854

James (II) described himself as a gunsmith and fishing tackle manufacturer. James (I) was one of the first English gun

makers to recognise the potential of the breech loading guns exhibited by Lefaucheux at the Great Exhibition in 1851, and

much of the later success of his business was to come from them. In 1857 "The Field" published an advertisement which read

"BREECH-LOADING GUNS.-In addition to the manufacture of the very superior Fowling-Pieces which have gained the Advertiser so

great celebrity as a gunsmith, he has now respectively to state that he is preparing to take Orders for BREECH-LOADING

FOWLING PIECES. A few excellent light Double guns on hand, of best quality, will be sold at a very moderate price, as he is

now working entirely to order against next season.-J. D. Dougall, 23 Gordon-street, Glasgow. Established 1760."

On 3 March 1859 J D Dougall registered patent No. 566 for a muzzle-loading breech action with recoiling chambers and a long

nipple vent which ignited the front of the powder charge. In 1869 James(I) and Janet had a third son, Norman W, who later

joined the business. On 7 May 1860 James (I) registered patent No. 1128 for his famous "Lockfast" action, where the barrels,

rotating on the hinge pin which turned by means of a downward moving lever also acted as a cam, sliding the barrels forward

before dropping down, and lock into bosses on the action face when closing. The first version of this was a double barrel

pin-fire gun with an upward moving lever, the improved version was a centre-fire with a downward moving lever. Both shotguns

and rifles were made on the principle, the rifle being a capping breech-loader using a combustible cartridge. There were

several variations to parts of the mechanism. Twelve or so years later, Dougall introduced a snap action version. The patent

was the most successful of all the slide and drop action and was used by Holland & Holland amongst others. The Lockfast was

made over a period of about 25 years. In the 1861 census James (I) and Janet were not recorded anywhere in the UK, they may

have been on an extended visit to London. However, the rest of the Dougall family were living with the Colquhoun family at

124 Pitt Street. Peter Colquhoun was a commission merchant, it may be that he was a relative, perhaps Janet's brother. John

(II) was aged 19 and described as a gunsmith, James (II) was 11 years old and a scholar, Norman was only 2 years old. In

1861 James (I) went to Belgium and licensed several Liege gun makers to use his Lockfast patent. Other holders of licences

were Benjamin Cogswell, W & J Rigby, E M Reilly and John Lyell of Aberdeen. An unlicenced user of the principle was the firm

of Nixon & Lawton of Newark, Nottinghamshire who had to publish an apology and pay the royalties due.

In 1862 the firm exhibited their guns in London and were awarded a medal. On 8 October 1863 James (I) registered patent No.

2468 for a hinged chamber for punt guns and small military cannon. This was similar to the Lockfast and was made by the

Blakeley Ordnance Co of 7 Pall Mall, London. In 1864 James (II) described himself as a gun and rifle maker and fishing

tackle manufacturer. In this year John (II) was left to manage the Glasgow shop and James (I) and James (II) moved to London

where they opened a shop at 59 St James's Street. James (I) became involved at this time with the Schultze gunpowder

company, precisely what his involvement was is unknown. Over the preceding years, James Dalziel Dougall had increasingly

devoted himself to writing to shooting magazines (under the pseudonym of "A Glasgow Gunmaker") and writing books. Amongst

his titles were "British Rural Sports", "Scottish Field Sports", "The Shotgun and Sporting Rifle ", "Shooting Simplified"

and "The Rifle Simplified". In 1865 he republished "Shooting Simplified". n 1866 the firm was awarded a medal at an

exhibition in India, no record of this exhibition is known.

In 1866 James (I) and William Bartram (a London implement and powder flask maker), patented a powder measure (No. 1984). In

1867 the firm exhibited guns in Paris and were awarded a medal. John Wilkes worked for the firm from around 1867. James

Mackie worked for the firm. In 1869 he registered two patents for variations of the Dougall Lockfast neither of which were

successful (see James Mackie of Pimlico). In 1868 James (I) described himself as a "patent lockfast gun and rifle maker and

fishing tackle manufacturer", and in 1871 as a breech loading gun and rifle manufacturer. In the 1871 census John C Dougall

was recorded as a gunmaker manager living with the Beaton family at 13 Partick, Glasgow. The rest of the family were

recorded at 51 Bedford Gardens, Kensington. In 1872 J D Dougall was appointed Gun and Rifle Manufacturer to the Prince of

Wales (later Edward VII), who ordered a Lockfast gun. From about this date Dougall guns carried the Prince of Wales' feather

crest on the action, or words referring to the Royal Appointment. The firm was also given an appointment to the Duke of

Edinburgh (Alfred) but the precise date this occurred is not known.

In 1875 James Dalziel Dougall wrote "Shooting: Its Appliances, Practices and Purpose" (republished in 1881). On 24 April

1877 J D Dougall registered patent No. 1590 for a guardless folding trigger. In the 1881 census James (I) and his family

were still living at 51 Bedford Gardens. James was recorded as a gunmaker employing 10 men, James (II) and Norman were

described as gunmakers. In 1882 the firm moved to 8 Bennett Street, St James's Street, London, and started to trade as J D

Dougall & Sons. In 1887 James (I) became a director of the Smokeless Powder Company Ltd (The Smokeless Powder and Ammunition

Co Ltd).

On 28 February 1891 James (I) died aged 72, and James (II) took over the firm. In the 1891 census the house at 51 Bedford

Gardens was occupied by Janet, James (II), Margaret and her daughter, and Norman. James(II) described himself as a gun and

gunpowder maker, Norman described himself as a gunmaker. In 1892 James (II) became the first Chairman of the Armourers Club

(the Gun Trade Association), a position he held until 1895. In 1893 he was recorded as Managing Director of the Smokeless

Powder Company Ltd. In this year the inaugural meeting of the Inanimate Bird Shooting Association took place with James (II)

as chairman. In 1895 the Glasgow business was sold to Charles A Ingram (nephew of the famous target rifle maker). In 1894

James (II) died aged only 44. It would appear that John Wilkes, in the position of manager, ran the business for his

executors until 1896 when it closed and Bozard & Co took over the premises. There is a report that states that John Wilkes

became a partner in the business in 1871, and another report that the date was about 1879, but Wilkes later claimed that his

own business was "established 1880". The business in Glasgow was continued under the name of James Dalziel Dougall & Sons by

Charles A Ingram who, in 1904, when the lease on 23 Gordon Street ran out and was not offered for renewal, moved the

business to 3 West Nile Street, on the corner of Gordon Street and, in 1912 to 18a Renfield Street. Charles Ingram's address

at the time was 18b Renfield Street. In 1920 the firm occupied 4 Bothwell Street, Glasgow, it ceased to trade under the

Dougall name between 1923 and 1929, although the firm of Charles Ingram continued until 1946.
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Old 9th March 2016, 09:43 AM   #2
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Hello, Dana

Howdawe pistol? Rifled?

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Old 9th March 2016, 10:48 AM   #3
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No, not rifled ... as you look at the picture ...
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Old 9th March 2016, 12:22 PM   #4
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Just a note of the LONDON GAZETTE Decembre 4th 1894

"NOTICE TO CREDITORS AND DEBTORS.
The Subscriber Norman William Dougall hereby
gives notice that he has of this date disposed of
the business of Gun, Fishing Rod, and Tackle Maker,
carried on by him at No. 23 Gordon-street, Glasgow,
under the firm of J. D. Dougall and Sons, to Mr. Charles
I. Annan and Mr. John Retson.
Mr. Dougall will pay all debts due by said firm to the
date of transference, and the said Charles I. Annan and
John Retson are authorized to receive payment on behali
of Mr. Dougall of all debts due to the said firm.
J. D. DOUGALL and SONS.
N. W. DOUGALL.
Signed in presence of—
Robert Brown, Writer, 156 St. Vincentstreet,
Glasgow.
Robt. Carswell, Writer, 203 Hopestreeb,
Glasgow.
Glasgow, 28th November 1894."

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Old 9th March 2016, 02:01 PM   #5
Pukka Bundook
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Very nice pistols Dana.

Very nice indeed. Nice twist barrels, nice fences, Nice engraving and lovely locks!
The bores are not unusually large. We do see bores of pistols of musket size quite often.
2 thoughts come to mind, or two possible uses;

1, Pistols carried by a British officer (And I hate that term, as it is used far too much!) But being the bore they are, they would take the standard musket ball, which would reduce the supply problem.

2, Possibly to be carried in the hunting field or in a Howdah as suggested by Fernando.
This last suggestion has my nod as the most likely, as pistols carried on military excursions were often fitted with a lanyard ring.
Also the high quality suggests sporting use, though many officer arms were also of V. high quality.
Could you show us the lock-work?

I wish we could go back and look at the photos whilst replying, but I would say these pistols are from the 1840's, with the flat sided cocks (hammers) as by the 1850's we see more cocks of rounded form. (of course this isn't cast in stone!)

Congrats on a lovely set!!

Richard.
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Old 9th March 2016, 02:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corrado26
Just a note of the LONDON GAZETTE Decembre 4th 1894

"NOTICE TO CREDITORS AND DEBTORS.
The Subscriber Norman William Dougall hereby
gives notice that he has of this date disposed of
the business of Gun, Fishing Rod, and Tackle Maker,
carried on by him at No. 23 Gordon-street, Glasgow,
under the firm of J. D. Dougall and Sons, to Mr. Charles
I. Annan and Mr. John Retson.
Mr. Dougall will pay all debts due by said firm to the
date of transference, and the said Charles I. Annan and
John Retson are authorized to receive payment on behali
of Mr. Dougall of all debts due to the said firm.
J. D. DOUGALL and SONS.
N. W. DOUGALL.
Signed in presence of—
Robert Brown, Writer, 156 St. Vincentstreet,
Glasgow.
Robt. Carswell, Writer, 203 Hopestreeb,
Glasgow.
Glasgow, 28th November 1894."

corrado26


Thanks for adding to my information on the Dongalls corrado26.

I've found a few ads and box labels.
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Old 9th March 2016, 02:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook
Very nice pistols Dana.

Very nice indeed. Nice twist barrels, nice fences, Nice engraving and lovely locks!
The bores are not unusually large. We do see bores of pistols of musket size quite often.
2 thoughts come to mind, or two possible uses;

1, Pistols carried by a British officer (And I hate that term, as it is used far too much!) But being the bore they are, they would take the standard musket ball, which would reduce the supply problem.

2, Possibly to be carried in the hunting field or in a Howdah as suggested by Fernando.
This last suggestion has my nod as the most likely, as pistols carried on military excursions were often fitted with a lanyard ring.
Also the high quality suggests sporting use, though many officer arms were also of V. high quality.
Could you show us the lock-work?

I wish we could go back and look at the photos whilst replying, but I would say these pistols are from the 1840's, with the flat sided cocks (hammers) as by the 1850's we see more cocks of rounded form. (of course this isn't cast in stone!)

Congrats on a lovely set!!

Richard.


Thanks for your comments Richard.

To me the barrels look like they have a faux damascus finish.

I have had a chance to own and see "a few" percussion pistols from the mid 19th century. Most have bores sizes around 1/2 (.5) inch, and a few were a little larger, but I've never personally seen one with a bore that is almost 3/4 (.75) inches. I've been looking on-line to see if I could find some. Can you point me at some examples?

I should note that J. D. Dougall & Sons seems to have been making shotguns with this bore size during the time these pistols were made.

I know that officers of the period often purchased pistols like these for their own use. I have a distant relative who was an officer in the United States Marines during the first half of the 19th century. He owned a nice pair not unlike these in some ways. https://plus.google.com/+DanaWilliams/posts/6nwERRQVJfE

The best way to look at the photos while replying is to open another browser window and then view the original post in that window simultaneously. It is helpful.

I agree with you about dating by style, but the information I have shows that J. D. Dougall didn't open a London office until the 1860s.

I'll consider photographing the lock internals for you.

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Old 10th March 2016, 03:30 AM   #8
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Dana,

The style of the cocks on these pistols appears to me more in line with the 40's rather than '60's but that's all I can say!

Dougall was famous for his Lockfast action, and is a very well known maker.

The barrels of your pistols are a stub iron twist, Nothing 'faux' about them.

I'm surprised you have had a hard time finding pistols of this calibre. They were never as common as say 16 or 14 bore, but do show up quite often.
I'd suggest looking at auction sales, or sale archives at places like Holts.

For a back-up in the hunting field or howdah, pistols of 12 to 10 bore are the norm rather than the exception.
My own pistols from this period are smaller bore than these, (16 bore, 20-bore or .62 calibre, and about 22 bore.) Apart from pocket pistols I think bores of half an inch are the exception rather than the rule.

"The Great Guns" by Harold L Peterson, has a chapter on howdah pistols.

You will also find that dragoon pistols, though severely plain are also of the same bore as yours, or just a little larger...roughly .76 calibre to take the standard musket ball.

Best Regards,
Richard.
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Old 10th March 2016, 03:58 AM   #9
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Dana,

Just did a real quick search; "Percussion Manstopper".

Found the following on one page at Google;

Rock Island sold a pair of W/Richards in .65" cal.

Pair at Lewis Drake by W'm and Jno Rigby, Dublin, .69 cal.

On GunStar, (UK) a Harcourt 4" barreled man -stopper in .72 cal.

Guns international, Pair of Westley Richards in .65 cal.

Jno Denner ...Wilson (Dublin) .78 cal.

at 1894 & B4,..w/Richards man stopper in .72 cal

Vintage live auctions,...Bingham man stopper in .76 cal.

All the best,
Richard.
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Old 10th March 2016, 11:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook
Dana,

The style of the cocks on these pistols appears to me more in line with the 40's rather than '60's but that's all I can say!

Richard.


They sure do, put they are marked London, and Dougall doesn't seem to have been in London during that period. Should I put a date on them that I know is likely to be wrong?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook

Dougall was famous for his Lockfast action, and is a very well known maker.

Richard.


True. This information was in my first post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook

The barrels of your pistols are a stub iron twist, Nothing 'faux' about them.

Richard.


They just don't look right to me. I think they may be 'faux', but I don't know.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook

I'm surprised you have had a hard time finding pistols of this calibre. They were never as common as say 16 or 14 bore, but do show up quite often.
I'd suggest looking at auction sales, or sale archives at places like Holts.

For a back-up in the hunting field or howdah, pistols of 12 to 10 bore are the norm rather than the exception.
My own pistols from this period are smaller bore than these, (16 bore, 20-bore or .62 calibre, and about 22 bore.) Apart from pocket pistols I think bores of half an inch are the exception rather than the rule.

"The Great Guns" by Harold L Peterson, has a chapter on howdah pistols.

You will also find that dragoon pistols, though severely plain are also of the same bore as yours, or just a little larger...roughly .76 calibre to take the standard musket ball.

Best Regards,
Richard.


I'll check Peterson's book. I've certainly seen small calibers, and a few large caliber muzzleloading pistols. Just never seen anything this large from this period and with this style, but I am willing to learn. And that is why I asked the question here.

Thanks again.

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Old 10th March 2016, 11:32 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook
Dana,

Just did a real quick search; "Percussion Manstopper".



Wow! Thanks for providing the terms "Percussion Manstopper", and "Howdah Pistol" Richard (AKA Pukka Bundook). Information like that is exactly what I was looking for.

These photos are from a long ended auction at 1898andb-4.com Item 3648

http://www.1898andb-4.com/products....e+HOWDAH+Pistol
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Old 10th March 2016, 12:01 PM   #12
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Good morning Dana,

Re. dating your pistols, I in no way meant to suggest you date them 'wrong' because of the type of hammers! I was merely saying that if it were not for the London address, I would have put them 10 or 15 years earlier than we 'know" they are, that's all.
It is this sort of thing that gives pause to many little points we may take for granted.
Have you dismounted the barrels? If so, the browning should show much better on the underside.
I am still certain that Dougall would never use any faux twist barrels. I have never even heard of such from this time period amongst better quality British gunmakers, and Dougall was right up there with the best.

To me, I see no reason to believe that these tubes are anything but good quality stub -iron twist barrels.
On the bottom flat, it is not uncommon to see stamped "Twisted stubs" or something similar denoting their make -up.

Pleased the Man-stopper search helped!
In this time period, when the Colt Navy and such were becoming popular, quite a few British officers were casting a jaundiced eye at the latter, as a protagonist could be filled with holes from such small calibre pistols, and Still chop the said officer down.
The solutions were large bore single or double pistols, that had at that time a name we can't use these days, but "man-stopper" holds the same meaning!

All the best,
Richard.
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Old 10th March 2016, 12:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook
Have you dismounted the barrels? If so, the browning should show much better on the underside.

I am still certain that Dougall would never use any faux twist barrels. I have never even heard of such from this time period amongst better quality British gunmakers, and Dougall was right up there with the best.

To me, I see no reason to believe that these tubes are anything but good quality stub -iron twist barrels.
On the bottom flat, it is not uncommon to see stamped "Twisted stubs" or something similar denoting their make -up.



I'll take a closer look and maybe take some more photos.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook
The solutions were large bore single or double pistols, that had at that time a name we can't use these days, but "man-stopper" holds the same meaning!



Now you have to tell me the contemporary name. Please
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Old 10th March 2016, 01:48 PM   #14
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Dana,

I'll PM or email you!

Richard.
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Old 10th March 2016, 01:53 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook
Dana,

I'll PM or email you!

Richard.


I'll keep an eye out for that.
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Old 10th March 2016, 06:27 PM   #16
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I want to thank Richard (AKA Pukka Bundook) again for putting me on the right path.

I have found this article on-line from 1972's issue of Guns & Ammo Annual. It was originally posted by a user named CoyoteAndMommote at this forum: http://britishmilitariaforums.yuku.com/
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Old 10th March 2016, 07:51 PM   #17
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Dana,

I sent that article to Coyote, it seems a long time ago now!
Had more or less forgotten about it.

That forum is my main 'home' still.

I still have the annual and was going to suggest looking it up.

Cheers,
Richard.
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Old 10th March 2016, 08:49 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook
Dana,

I sent that article to Coyote, it seems a long time ago now!
Had more or less forgotten about it.

That forum is my main 'home' still.

I still have the annual and was going to suggest looking it up.

Cheers,
Richard.


It is a small world after all.

I am still looking for a copy of Peterson's "The Great Guns". I have found three Peterson books in my collection so far with "The" & "Gun" in the title, but not that one, yet.
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Old 11th March 2016, 01:28 AM   #19
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Dana,

Just checked my book. .. "The Great Guns"

By Harold L Peterson and Robert Elman.
Actually, when I look at it, the chapter is entitled "The most Dangerous Game", and covers both heavy sporting guns/rifles And howdah pistols, Not Just the pistols.
(Such is memory!)

If I can find the book for sale I'll let you know. :-)

Richard.

Edited to add that I checked on "ABE books", Dana, and they have a lot of copies of this book, all at $1,00 Yep, One Dollar US, and $4.95 US shipping from the Uk to you or me up here!

If you wind up not having this book, is shouldn't break the bank getting it!

R.
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Old 12th March 2016, 01:03 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook
Dana,

Just checked my book. .. "The Great Guns"

By Harold L Peterson and Robert Elman.
Actually, when I look at it, the chapter is entitled "The most Dangerous Game", and covers both heavy sporting guns/rifles And howdah pistols, Not Just the pistols.
(Such is memory!)

If I can find the book for sale I'll let you know. :-)

Richard.

Edited to add that I checked on "ABE books", Dana, and they have a lot of copies of this book, all at $1,00 Yep, One Dollar US, and $4.95 US shipping from the Uk to you or me up here!

If you wind up not having this book, is shouldn't break the bank getting it!

R.


I found it at used at Amazon too. Thanks!
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Old 12th March 2016, 08:32 AM   #21
corrado26
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I want to show you a small flintlockpistol of my collection made by RIGBY at Dublin. It has a smooth barrel of 18,00mm calibre and a magazin for three rounds in its butt. I believe that this is a manstopper pistol too.
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Old 12th March 2016, 12:28 PM   #22
dana_w
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That is very interesting corrado26. I especially like the built in magazine.
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Old 12th March 2016, 01:00 PM   #23
Pukka Bundook
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Very nice to see, Corrado.

I did see one sell recently very like this, with the groove down the top of the barrel, by W'm Truelock.
It too was very large calibre and would certainly be a man-stopper!
The French cock on yours says about 1810, though the pan style looks a bit earlier.

Thanks for sharing.

Richard.
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