Calls from the Wilds


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Drone to drop stuff directly on your house!

Jeremy Clarkson

Silly commercial for Amazon Prime Air starring Top Gear (UKs) recent host Jeremy Clarkson.

Disturbing story deserving of a second rate TV script:


New York Times November 21, 2015

What has Four Legs and Four Eyes???


thanks to RRoss Graphics, Inc


Tickets Lawyers -



P.O.BOX 2359 Huntington Beach, CA 92647

Toll Free : 855 TKT LAWS or 855 858 5297

You know that funny look Cujo, your toy poodle, has been giving you?


... at least he was named appropriately



and mama

Remember the "Palace of Versailles outside Orlando?

It was being built by the time share guy, David Seigel, who went bust during the recession. They made a movie about his family called The Queen of Versailles. The house was to be the largest single family dwelling in the country at 90,000 square feet but the project was abandoned for years. Well he sold a bunch more time shares and is back at building the place- so you missed your chance to buy it... but, I've got something almost as good for you. This one is located in Pompano Beach, Florida and, as you can see, is almost a big as Seigel's place, and even more expensive at $159 Million!


This one has a couple of drawbacks though. For example, that is the A1A highway running through your front yard and, of course being directly on the Atlantic Ocean a hurricane could wash away the dock, the 200' yacht, the go cart track, the ice rink and uh, the house. Oh, OK so you want something a little less ostentatious?

How about this townhouse in New York? It's perfect. It is gracious, big and is the gateway into High Society?"

New York

It is beautiful, isn't it? And such quality for a mere $50 million! Is it near Central Park where all the High Society people live but it isn't on Park Ave. and has a lot of stairs if you don't trust elevators. This is a view down the street and shows the Lebanese Consulate next door so it is obviously the high rent district.

Other Side

If this one isn't for you or you don't have deep pockets how about something away from all the hustle and bustle?

Sonoma, California...

Note the description says it has a "muscular" design and it is high above the Pacific so none of that trash from the Japanese tsunami will bother you as it piles up on the beach below! It has 200 acres for privacy and it is what the trade calls a cheapo at a mere $6 million!


You can see how they cleared all the vegetation away from the house so the fires shouldn't be a problem. And I bet it comes with a deuce and a half to get up the cliff road to the house included at no extra extra charge! The High Society I mentioned before? Well, I don't think they'll visit unless you get the Huey helicopter repaired to fly them in... it had a small accident and can just be seen on the west side of...

Yes, Sir, I'll keep looking.

OhioOr a Cupid...

Rob Mouat

I had planned to bother you about lending us your catalogs and manuals in this space but Abby, exhibiting the sort of conscience I expect from her, says it would be impolite for me to ask for something during the giving season, so you will have to wait until next month. I'm sorry.

Arms Heritage Magazine

Civil War Torpedoes

Arms Heritage Magazine is continuing its series on some of the unusual and innovative weapons of the Civil War. The following is an excerpt from an article that will appear in the February issue:

The concept of using subterranean devices (torpedoes) was born as C.S.A. General Gabriel Rains was withdrawing from the advancing Union troops under McClellan at Yorktown. His troops planted a number of artillery shells equipped with pressure fuses along the road to Williamsburg to slow the Union advances. Although only a few troops were actually killed by these devices, they did have the desired effect. Rains immediate commander, General Joseph Johnson opposed the practice but was over-ridden by the Confederate Secretary of War, George Randolph. Rains was assigned to adapt his idea to river or harbor defenses to deter attacking or blockading fleets.

Rains' story is an interesting one. A graduate of West Point, he served, starting in 1827, first in Indian Territory and later in the Seminole Wars in Florida. He served with Zachary Scott in Mexico and had further frontier duty at various postings. He resigned his commission in July of 1861 to tender his service to the Confederacy.

In 1840, during the Seminole War, Rains had devised a kind of explosive booby trap to alert his forces to indian incursion. Some success with this device led to later experiments with subterranean explosive devices.

infernal machines

Although Rains remained with the Army and the idea idled while he pursued other combat roles, eventually he was summoned by Robert E. Lee in June of 1862 and charged to see to river defenses at the James and Appomattox Rivers. For the next three months Rains developed and placed “submarine Mortar Batteries” in the James River. These devices used readily available materials—artillery shells, wooded barrels, glass demijohns and other containers. Detonation was mostly by contact primers –tubes of chemicals that would ignite when crushed together or sometimes by precarious rigs such as pistols with triggers hooked up to lanyards. Other designs used electrical current from galvanic cells that could be triggered from shore but insulated wire was expensive and in short supply.


U.S.S. Bazelon being blown up by a Confederate torpedo

Previous issues of Arms Heritage Magazine have dealt with hand grenades, calcium flood lights, signaling devices, the Winans steam gun and others.

Remember, current subscribers have access to all 30 past issues as well as to those to be published in the coming year. Hard copy versions of Annual Compendiums for years 1 thru 4 are available from Cornell Publications.

Check in at Arms Heritage Magazine

Order Printed Copies of Arms Heritage Magazine

New Books and Special Thanks

You can always see the reprints added during the last six months by clicking on the Recent Additions link on our website. Special thanks to Mike Pink who works in the New Forest which was established in 1079 by William I and where I once unsuccessfully tried to ride a wild pony, for letting us borrow his wonderful old catalogs to copy.

BSA 1951- The New BSA Air Rifles Flyer

BSA 1954 Short Action Rifle Flyer

BSA 1959 of England Hunting Rifles Flyer

BSA c1980s British Guns Of Quality Since 1861 Flyer

BSA c1980s CF2 Rifle- The Moment of Truth Flyer

BSA c1981 Center Fire Rifles Flyer

C. R. Pedersen & Son 1952-53

Marlin 1993 Sporting Firearms

Mossberg 1988 Gun Catalog

Mossberg 1989 Gun Catalog

Mossberg 1990 Gun Catalog

Mossberg 1993 Shooting Systems

Ruger 1990 Quality Firearms

Springfield Armory Jan 1986 Gun Catalog

Springfield Armory July 1986 Gun Catalog

United States Rifles and Machine Guns 1917

Winchester 1979 Parts Catalog

We are doing an experiment with PDF files to see if people can keep them or if they will just forward them to everyone they know. So, here is an experimental batch. Unfortunately the darn program charges shipping so we have to refund that when we get the order:
Winchester Model 12 Featherweight Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 12 Gunsmith Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 1200, 1300, Sears 200 & Rangers Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 1400 (1400 MkII and 1500XTR) Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 200 Series Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 37 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 42 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 50 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 61 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 63 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 69a, 72, 75 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 70 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 70 Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 75 Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 77 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 88 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION
Winchester Model 94 Complete Takedown Manual - PDF DOWNLOAD VERSION

These make great Christmas gifts and we can include a plain card from you (but we don't gift wrap). Please don't forget the ship-to name and address.

BANNERMAN - NEW YORK - ALL CATALOGS are fascinating reading for any armament buff, they contain everything you can think of. Abercrombie & Fitch Firearms & Sports 1910 Catalogs sold all things from prepared food to automobile outfitting. The 1929 Tryon catalogs sold tableware to sporting goods and Great Western Gun Works 1897- Retail Sport Goods and Guns sold to homesteaders across the country. Two of my favorites, although not really in keeping with the season, are these: Evans Gaming Co. 1909-1910 Cheating Equipment (Illinois) and Federal Gas Protection Laboratories 1934 (read what these people were suggesting to protect the banks from robbers)

1904-1941 catalogs available. A&F was an elite sporting goods dealer offering a wide range of European and domestic firearms and the fines accessories. The 1910 is huge and the 1935 has a nice selection of British shotguns.
1926-1970 catalogs available. Stoeger was a preeminent seller of Foreign and Domestic Arms and Accessories, known as “The Only Exclusive Gun House in America”. Stoeger is the got to source for the most weapons made in the U.S. and for many foreign firearms. They were over 300 pages by 1936 and over 500 by 1939. A wonderful resource.
1888-1966 catalogs available. Bannerman was an international arms dealer and one of the first companies to sell war surplus to the public. The catalogs were treasure chests of war materials for collectors for over a century, good reading too. My favorites are the 1903, 1927 and 1955 (a lot of pages were repeated from decade to decade)'
1888-1907 catalogs available. The Godfrey company sold a wide selection of rifles, shotguns and handguns at low prices but they also sold top names like Parker, Greener and LeFever.
1883-1893 catalogs available. Meacham sold a wide selection of rifles, shotguns and handguns at low prices. My favorites are the pure gun catalogs from 1883 and 1884 with beautiful renderings of handguns that "won the west". By 1893 they were so civilized they sold Hendley lawn mowers and tennis goods!
EC MEACHAM - ALL CATALOGS (St. Louis, Missouri)
1883-1958 catalogs available.  Tryon was a large mercantile business selling roughly in competition with Sear Roebuck
1950-1970 catalogs available. FIE sold high end imported Rifles and Shotguns and Handguns. FIE started out with Mauser, Sako, Star, Astra and AYA in 1950 but 20 years later they sold many imported weapons, knives and ammunition.
1884-1941 catalogs available. The Folsom history goes back to 1849 and was associated with some of the biggest gun makers of its era. Read the history at the Folsom page. In 1884 they sold every gun from Pieper and Parker to Flobert and Eureka, knives, pistols, fret saws and the Eclipse parer and corer. 50 years later in 1941 on the eve of WWII they still sold all sorts of sporting goods.
1871-1897 catalogs available. Great Western supplied guns and equipment to the American West during the turbulent era of the gunfighter/cowboy. I can imagine tattered copies of these catalogs in saddle bags across the continent.
1928-1993 catalogs available. The Parker company has been the pre-eminent British shooting supplier for almost a century. They sold every shooting supply you can think of as well as SMLEs and Webley revolvers and pistols.
1904-1949 catalogs available. Jeffery outfitted innumerable African and Indian safaris as well as gentlemen shooters in the UK. Shotguns, Pistols, Revolvers, reloading, air guns, Cordite, you name it.
1905-1964 catalogs available. Marbles was the leading sight, knife and accessory maker for over a half century. Everyone knows Marbles.
1931-1975 catalogs available. Pacific sold sights and reloading equipment as well as firearms by mail order the country.
1892-1930 catalogs available. SD&G had a history starting in 1865 (read the fascinating history). They sold Daly guns and imported and domestic arms and accessories.
1890-1940 catalogs available. The VL&D and VL&A brothers have a story worth reading too. They were competitors Abercrombie with stores in New York and Chicago for the high end business of selling sporting goods and firearms. 50 years of gun and sporting history.
VON LENGERKE (Detmold & Antoine) – NY and Chicago - ALL CATALOGS
Cap Pistols for different generations
Plus some orphan favorites by year- earliest first:
James Bown 1876 & Son Enterprise Gun Works & Sporting Goods
Fisher, Homer - 1880 Catalogue, NY, NY
GW Turner & Ross 1883 Fire Arms Gun Catalog, Boston
Hodgekins & Haigh c1883 Guns & Access Catalog, NY
Curry and Bro., 1884 Catalogue, San Francisco
J. A. Ross Co. 1884 Firearms Catalog, Boston, MA
EC Meacham Arms Co. 1885 Gun & Sport Goods Catalog, St. Louis
John P. Moore 1886 Catalog, NY
John P. Lovell 1887 Gun Catalog, Boston
George W. Harder 1890 Illustrated Gun Catalogue, Williamsport, PA
John P. Lovell Arms Co. 1890 Gun Catalogue, Boston
Fletcher, Jenks & Co. 1891 Guns & Sports, Detroit, MI
EC Meacham Arms Co. Gun Catalog 1893, St Louis
Ingersoll, Robert & Bros. Sporting Goods & Sundry 1894 New York
Gemmer, JP Catalog - 1898, St. Louis, Mo
Dunham-Fulton Gun Co. 1905 Catalog, Oshkosh, WI
Evans Gaming Co. 1909-1910 Cheating Equipment (Illinois)
Frank P. Hall Co. 1910 Gun Catalog, Columbus, Ohio
Greer & Lang 1914 Gun & Sporting Goods Catalog- Wheeling W. Va.
Hingston Smith Arms Co. Ltd. 1915 Catalog, Manitoba, Canada
John Pritzlaff 1915 Gun & Sport Goods, Milwaukee, WI
J & E Stevens 1924 Cap Pistols, Mechanical Banks, Toys Etc.
J. Galef Sporting 1925 Catalog, NY
Von Frantzius, P c1928 Gun and Sport Catalog, Chicago, Ill.
L. Oppelman 1930 Imported & Gun Catalog, Lynchburg, VA
Bourne & Bond Guns and Hunting Catalog 1933-34, Louisville, KY
John B. Varick Co. 1934 Gun Catalog, Manchester, NH
Elmira Arms Company 1934 Gun & Sport Catalog, Elmira NY
Federal Gas Protection Laboratories 1934
Galef, JL 1939 World's Fair Issue Gun, Fishing & Sports Catalog, NY
Howe's Greatest Bargain Book 1939-40 Catalog, Cooper's Mills, Me
I. Goldberg 1949 Gun and Surplus Goods Catalog, Phila, PA.
Arizona Highway 1958 Gunslingers of the Old West

* Download our latest flyer of old gun catalogs

This requires Adobe Reader, which is free.
Those on dial up, beware - it is a large download. (30mb)
Adobe Reader

Letters from Readers

New boy on the block... good luck to them!

Support collector firearms publications- there are far too few of them.

CAJ Image

The Classic Arms Journal is a departure from the usual firearms publications. The mix of content and contributors is unique with features and commentary on fine firearms you simply won't find anywhere else. Within the CAJ realm is also the Classic Arms Report which features an introduction and tells a bit about the magazine and participants. It is our hope to post new material weekly at the CAR, including new-product notices, book reviews, commentary and anything else deemed pertinent and newsworthy.

Letters from readers:

Hi, I have a number of S&W Catalogs-Circulars from 1956-1958 that on the back, instead of saying at the bottom S&W Printed in the U.S.A say instead C.P. Printed in the U.S.A. Does the C.P. stand for Cornell Publications? In other words, how does one know if this might be one of yours. They are in fantastic condition for their age. Thank you. – purplelizval (Ebay)

Dear purplelizval, Not one of ours. Could have been the printer at the time. Rob


Here is an example of a complicated email scam setup using “freight forwarders”:

Am Micheal Doskia. I will like to place an order from you and i am registered with a shipping company whom i have used severally without any delay nor problems with my goods. Before i place these order, i will like to know if i am able to place the order and most important:

1) If i can make payment with my credit cards Visa/Mc because that is the only way i am set for payment for now without no delay.

2) I don't place online orders, can i e-mail or Fax my order then you can give me a quote here and make charges to my cards manually on your end( Credit Card Terminal) Pls Clarify.

And before we continue with this order, i will like it to come to your notice that, I will send you my order and you will get back to me with the total cost of my order. I will send you my credit card to be charged for the total cost of my order and I want you to help me Charge another extra fee from my card for the freight forwarder who will be coming to pick up my ordered items from you. After all the charges have been made, you will help me Wire the shipment fee to the freight forwarder and i will let them know when to come for the pickup as soon as i have the go ahead from you.

Please note: I would have given the freight forwarder my credit card for him to deduct the pickup funds but was told that he doesn't have the facility to charge or debit credit cards for now, which is why I bring my vote of confidence

in you and i wouldn't want you to betray my trust. So I want you to transfer the funds to him ONLY after you have made the charges on my credit card. Let me know if this can be done and i will get back to you with my Needed items.Looking forward to your swift response then we can proceed further as soon as possible.. Warmest Regards, Micheal Doskia.

Sir, We are an online business and only accept online purchases. Every time you use your credit card it goes "online" - there is no such thing as a "manual" charge. RM

Hello, Thanks for the mail, i will like you to know that i can only make the order offline(Email or Fax) and not online due to past experience and also to also know that am dealing directly with someone. Regards

Sir, If you want to send us your credit card information by email that is fine but it is very dangerous because emails are not secure. Alternately you may send us an order by mail with a check (we will give you the amount once we have your address). When the check clears your bank and we have the cash we will ship the order. We do not deal with "freight forwarders" or any other way of doing business. You may also, depending on where you live, buy our products on Ebay although given Ebay fees we would prefer you buy from our website. Rob


Dear Abby, Thank you so much for sending out my order so quickly. Appreciated. Regretfully, there are an issue with the order. The version that I received has the date "1936" printed above the pistol (which is listed as Modele 1910). Why is it on this version but not on the one pictured on eBay? I really do not want it if it has the date 1936. But, I do want one that looks like what you have listed? I really would like to have 2 copies as are pictured on eBay. I am hoping to have the covers plaque-mounted for Christmas gifts. I look forward to hearing back from you. Thank you so much Abby. Appreciated, JFW

Dear Jeffrey, Thanks for writing. The “1936” is a case of trying to please some of the people some of the time. Someone thought it was misleading of us to print the cover implying the manual for was printed in 1910 for the model 1910, not that it was printed in 1936 for the older model, hence the 1936. I'll take it out again for you. Abby


Probably another phishing email (“freight” is the giveaway):

(Dear Rob) Kindly let me know if you freight oversea and take cc? Dennis J preska

Dear Dennis, We ship to certain countries. We take CCs at our website for items bought there. Rob Mouat


(Dear Abby) I just received my order. It appears to be lacking. Should the purchase item be two copies on one sheet of paper or is there more to the brochure/take down instructions? Emery Brawley (Ebay)

Dear Emery, It looks as if you bought this manual which is, indeed, two pages. If we made a mistake or if you wanted a different one, please let us know and we can fix it:

Bernardelli Model USA Owner's Manual

2 pages, about 11" x 8". New color re-print restored and digitally enhanced from a nice original. Printed on high quality 20# 97 bright acid free paper. Fully Illustrated. Text in English.

Best wishes, Rob Mouat


Dear cornellpubs, I'm interested in several of your Shooter's Bible reproductions but would like to make sure that they will "look right" alongside my originals. Do yours have a similar soft cover and binding? Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving! - it—figures (Ebay)

Dear it-… No, I'm sorry. It is impossible to offer the 5000 different old gun catalogs, books and manuals printed to order and still print each with the original binding and cover. Besides, we would then be accused of making forgeries of originals and the ephemera collectors would be up in arms. So, our copies have the front cover (back to if there was one on the donor) of the book printed on cover stock and we bind the whole thing with fabric hot-adhesive tape. Larger books and authored books are usually embossed on the spine. That said, I have originals of most of the post war Stoegers but I don't sell originals on Ebay at this time (too busy with the Christmas season). Cheers, Rob Mouat


Dear cornellpubs, Ideals Catalogs: Are these books bound? Thank you – straycatcdr (EBay)

Dear Stray... All but a few of the thinner, early Ideals are bound and trimmed. The others are folded, stapled and trimmed. If you are asking about a different publication, (we reprint over 5000 old books, mannuals and catalogs) in the event the description does not tell you if it is bound please ask about that item. Cheers, Rob Mouat


Hi, Dreyse Pistolet Model 1907 Gun Manual is this gun manual all printed in French or is there English sections in it as well? Many thanks, Alistair. – luggybrown (Ebay)

Alister, The manual is in French. Rob

Hi Rob, thanks for the reply. As I cant read French I guess I would only be looking at the pictures then, I don't think that would be what I want but as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. I will have a think about it. Thanks again, Alistair.

Alistair, Well, this might help. Go to the Google translator. You could type in the French and then it would put it into English for you (I could even make a pdf version that I run through a recognition program allowing you, on your computer to highlight the French text and copy and paste it to the Google translator, that way you would not have to type it). It would be time consuming but would work. Rob

Rob, I never thought of using Google translate which I think is an excellent idea. You know what, I think I will buy one of your manuals and anything im not sure about I can type it into Google translate. Many thanks, Alistair.


Hi Abby, My name is Taylor and I’m writing to you on behalf of my boy scout troop. I just wanted to say thank you for making your page (of links) www.cornellpubs.com/links.php

The boys are currently working on their Rifle Shooting merit badge and they are learning a lot! I have added an additional assignment while they study for their badges, which is to find a resource about safety so that others can learn about rifle safety as well. One of the troop members, William, found this page and wanted to share it with you: Airsoft Safety Information for Boy Scouts

Would you please incorporate his suggestion onto your web links page by adding his link for a short time? I would like to show him that his efforts have reached others outside of the immediate community. This presents to the whole troop that other people have an interest in, and care about the same things that they are earning badges for. William, and the rest of us will be very excited and appreciative if you'd add his resource and I sincerely hope that you will. Please let me know if you'd be willing so I can share it with the troop! Thank you in advance! Taylor Alexander

Hi Taylor, Please tell William we are pleased to share his good find with our readers. I'll mention his work in our next (December) newsletter too. Cornell Links Best wishes, Abby


Hi Abby, I received the German catalog reprint. Thank you, its great. I was looking at this Gopher Gun Supply catalog reprint you all have, and do you know if it has Normark'Rapala Knives shown and mentioned in it? Thank you, Erin

Dear Erin, Gopher Shows Normark knives which should be Rapala (they made Rapala) and a dozen other makers. Also: Normark 1969 Catalog with Rapala Lures Cheers, Rob


(Dear Abby) I'm in search of a thick catalog bout and inch thick or more. I had a friend that had one . And it's a catalog with old gun parts thanks, michael slade

Dear Mike, I need more of a hint. We print over 5000 catalogs, books and manuals about old guns and parts. You could be talking about a Stoeger catalog (every year since the 1920s), Dixie Gun works, Numrich or hundreds of other works. Abby


Dear Abby, I hope that you are well and wonder if you might remember that you helped me a great deal back in 2009 with the identification of an old .410 shotgun. The gun has since been fully restored and looks really beautiful. It is of the old two inch style. Since then I have continued to collect antiques and recently purchased two pistols. One is a Spanish Miquelet Style, circa 1750 & the other is from B.Pistor of Germany from around 1795. I noticed that you have two firearms appraisers listed on your newsletter but just wanted to check with you first to see if either of them might specialise in weapons of this style at all? Or perhaps there is someone else with this particular expertise. I will not ask for any preliminary appraisal and would be more than happy to pay up-front and to send some photos to whoever you might suggest. The Spanish Pistol seems to be more of a “Government” style piece but does have gold filled cartouches on the barrel and the lock maker’s initials engraved there. The German piece would be more of a private style contract and has quite elaborate brass foliate inlays & gargoyles engraved. If you have the time I would be delighted to hear from you again. Kind regards, David Rasko. {Sydney,Australia}

Hi David, I have no idea if either of the fellows knows anything about the weapons you describe, you could ask them or you could send me clear pictures including the proof marks and I'll put it in the newsletter for you. Best, Abby - Readers??


Dear Sir, I just found your site and hope you might have some information I am seeking. I see you list Joe Vorisek’s books and am unfamiliar with them but seeing them as sources inspired my search. I have a pair of “sash pistols” (cap & ball) made with fine details and craftsmanship They are marked ROBBINS & MARTIN , London , 1858. There is no case. My search about them and their history always came to a deadens over many years and I’d given up the chase. There was a Robbins company and several Martin gunmaker at that time but I’ve never found evidence that a combination ever occurred. If you can supply any info or point me to possible sources, I would be most grateful. If info is found I’d purchase such a book if it is available. The guns have been in my family since about 1880 and maybe earlier. I’ve been thinking of selling them now. Thanks for your help. Regards, Richard Bancroft

Dear Mr. Bancroft, Most of our research material applies to weapons made roughly after 1860 or the cartridge era so the name does not appear in our indexed items even though it may appear in one of the books not indexed that thoroughly. I have, however forwarded your letter to some people who may be able to help or at least point you to those who can. Joe Vorisek's research was primarily into Connecticut manufacturers of the latter 19th century so I don't think he could have helped. Best wishes, Rob Mouat

Dear Mr. Bancroft:

Rob Mouat of Cornell Publications has sent me a copy of your email of November 9th asking if I can help with your inquiry.

The only listing that I have in my reference files for Robbins & Martin is on pages 125-126 of Carl P. Russell’s “Guns on the Early Frontiers.”

Russell writes, “Robbins and Martin, Birmingham, is a firm not generally recognized as a manufacturer; it is possible that it was a jobbing house. But on May 16, 1842, the firm wrote to Ramsey Crooks of the American Fur Company, offering to ‘make’ North West guns at 11/6 here in Birmingham or 11/9 ‘on arrival’ in America. The tone of the letter suggests that the firm had previously engaged in the manufacture of trade guns. E.C. Robbins and Company is given as a reference with respect to the integrity of the house and the quality of the product. No gun marked by Robbins and Martin has turned up in my search for material for this book.”

The firm of E.C. Robbins & Co. is known as an importer of firearms in New York City from 1837. They were mainly a hardware jobber and gun importer up to at least 1850 and perhaps later. They are listed in many trade directories, e.g., in an 1845 directory “Wholesale dealer in Heavy and Shelf Hardware; Cutlery; Guns; Pistols; 134 Pearl St., and 100 Water St., New York.”

I have many books on the London and Birmingham gun trade, but none has a listing for Robbins and Martin.

Even though your pistols are marked “London” they may have been made in Birmingham. Many Birmingham makers marked their guns with the prestigious London name—sometimes because they had a sales office in London, and sometimes because they hoped it would help with overseas sales.

If the guns were made in England, there should be proof marks on the barrel. Sometimes the marks are on the underside of the barrel. If you could describe them or photograph them, I can tell you if they are from London or Birmingham.

I am editor of a Q&A column on guns in Arms Heritage Magazine

If you can send good photos of the guns, I could publish the photos and ask our readers for more information.

Regards, Michael F. Carrick


Dear Mr. Bancroft:

I'm a Los Angeles-based collector of British firearms, and it's always a pleasure to be asked to consult. The standard listings of British gunmakers do not include Robbins & Martin, either in London or Birmingham and other provincial cities/towns. When that approach fails, it is sometimes helpful to do a web search. In this case Robbins & Martin does not work, but Robbins & Martin, gunmakers does. Here's the link:

Searching for info on Robbins & Martin rifles

The last reply places Robbins & Martin in Birmingham and in New York, as retailers ("Hardware Dealers"), not gunmakers. It is common to see retailers' names on firearms, and also to see Birmingham-based firearms makers or sellers putting "London" on a piece, sometimes because they also had an outlet there but more often just to increase its appeal. I've also seen a number of English-based arms-related businesses with New York addresses in this period ( 1830s-1850s). One of the responders in the chain suggests to the owner of the rifle that she check for proof marks, and gives a link to a proof-mark site. You might do this out of interest; I would expect Birmingham proof and view marks.

Please feel free to reply with any questions, or if you learn anything more about your pistols.

Best wishes, Matthew Schneiderman


(Dear Abby) 25/36 marlin rifle: searching for load date. I am told you have it. what is the name of the manul. thanks Lou Sellman

Dear Lou, 25/36? Hmmm not 25/35 eh? We reprint dozens of old manuals and catalogs including all the old Ideal Handbooks from the 1890s to 1950s. I am not an expert on reloading but if your friend can tell you about when the cartridge you are looking for was popular I would think the Ideal of that date would have what you need.


All Reloading Books:

Best wishes, Rob - Readers???


Dear Rob and Abby, I have a pair of military pistols, one of which was owned by my Great Great Grandfather (1783 to 1854). Both pistols were made by Lacy and Co, of London, England. Both pistols carry locks which had originally been designed for flintlock use, but were fitted (from new) onto Percussion cap pistols, so they were presumably manufactured at the time of changeover. Do you have any literature on Lacy and Co. which you could send to me in Yorkshire, England? If so, What literature do you have, how much would it cost and how much would the postage cost be? Best Wishes from Adrian.



(Dear Abby) It looks like you have most years but are missing the 1937 book. I collect things from 1937(my birth year)and would love to have the 1937 edition of the STOEGER, AF catalog. Any chance you'll have one in the works now or in the near future? Thanks Jim Thomas

Readers- have you one I could borrow?


Hello, has it there in the catalog Homer Fisher Catalogue - 1880 (NY, NY) item n 274, a page on the model shotgun Colt 1878 ?.Cordialy, Philippe DAUXERRE

Dear Philippe, No, the Fisher catalog does not have the Colt shotgun. I believe the best choice for you is the Grubb & Co. Gun Catalog and Prices 1882- Phila, PA. which has 2 pages of Colt shotguns. Best wishes, Rob Mouat

Dear ROB, Thank you for your answer. The modele as attachment is it in the grubb catalog. Philippe

Dear Philippe, Dear Philipe, I think so? It says Double bolt, Top lever, Rebounding bar locks, Automatic firing pin, Patent lever bolt... And, as far as I can tell it looks like your picture. Cheers, Rob

Dear ROB, A last question there is a photo du shotgun in the catalog ? Philippe

Philippe, No, there is a drawing of the gun- not a very detailed drawing. Rob


(Dear Rob) You mention Ward's, Sears, Catalogs. Most of these from years ago ended up in the out house, and are very hard to find. The few you see in antique stores are more recent copies. And then there was Spiegel, a lesser know company based in Chicago. As a Mossberg 22 collector I am interested in these from the 1930's period. The latter usually sold Moss's with more expensive features, some of which were suggested by them. I do have copies of those gun ads from their catalogs but poor copies. I would like to see copies of all three companies gun (and related) pages, an impossible task to gather the catalogs I am sure. But maybe 1 or 2 of them at a time, as they are acquired? As for your question on Stoeger catalogs, many of these can still be purchased at gun shows cheaper then your reprint prices, tho the old ones are harder and more expensive. Lorne

Hi Lorne, You are quite right about the prices of old Sears et al catalogs and they are a pain to scan because they were printed on such cheap paper with difficult gutters in the middle. That is why we stick to only the gun pages for the ones we have done of Sears, Monkey Ward and others. You can find the in our listings.

As far as Gun Digest goes the prices on the pre-war ones continue to rise and are a lot more money than we charge for a reprint. The post-war ones we have done so far are very expensive to reprint and not surprisingly because you can buy originals fairly reasonably we sell few of them. But the point of what Abby and I are doing is not to make a killing in our retirement (which, given the small profit we make compared to the hours we put in is ridiculous) but to preserve these old catalogs for future generations before they are all gone.

I am always amused by someone who says "last year you sold me a 76 Colt Catalog for $15 and I found one at a gun show yesterday for $12. You ripped me off!" Well, the fact is the fellow bought the catalog, I didn't sell it to him and he wanted it a year ago, not yesterday, so shut up!

We have a stack of old pre-war Spiegle catalogs I bought ten or fifteen years ago that I haven't got to. If I come across them one day, I'll process some. Cheers, Rob


(Dear Rob) Objet : patcoucou a envoyé une question sur l'objet n° 370791492945, dont la vente se termine le 22-sept.-15 13:55:58 HAE - Famars (Italian) Gun 1972 Catalog -Patcoucou

Dear -Patcoucou, Looking at the index included with the advert I see the following including the Polluce, Rob:


Armi Famars 1972 Catalogue

Brescia, Italy

In Italian

Nettuno Extra Special 260

Polluce 265

Castore E A 270

Plutone export 630, 632…

(Dear Rob) Is it your final price ?! Thanks -Patcoucou (EBay)

Dear Patcou... I have to ask a friend...


Rants and Raves

Rants and Raves image

This month's winner is:

"Reader's choice- pick one from above!" Cheers, Rob

To see pages of Rants and Raves, and my replies, go to: RAVES and RANTS

Notes for New Readers (useful info repeated each month)

Popups and Blockers

Popup Blockers on your computer may block some links in this newsletter from opening. Many people set their browsers to block popups. This popup blocker may make it impossible to see some of the links in this newsletter because the link may ask the program to open in a new window (popup). If you experience this and want to suspend the popup blocker in Firefox go to Tools/Options/Content and click the popup box. in Internet Explorer go to Tools and then Popup Blocker (about in the middle).

* Tired of SPAM? Virginia Carter (our website guru from Carolina Web Creations) says:

1. Never use your main email address when signing up for stuff online. (ie: forums, purchases, etc.) There are many free email services out there (Google, Yahoo, Juno, etc.) where you can create an email address for your online activity and help control spam.

2. Use forwards cautiously - Use BCC (look for the link to open it near your address bar). Cut and paste the addresses you want to send to into BCC and this hides them from hackers and harvesters... helps control spam!

3. Use caution when visiting websites. Just visiting a webpage can infect your computer. Not all No.1 listed sites on Google are safe!

4. If you get an email from someone you don't know, DO NOT OPEN IT. And the most important - if you get an attachment from anyone with an extension of ".exe" - DO NOT OPEN IT! (.exe is an executable program, and once you double click on it, it will run some kind of program on your computer, usually designed to hurt your computer, possibly ruin it!)

5. If you're interested in "cleaning up" your computer to remove possible spamware and malware, you can download free programs like Spybot and Ad-Aware.

At the Cornellpubs website, you will find many gunmaker "master pages" listing all the catalog reprints of one brand. To the right of each "master page" are names of catalogs by merchants who carried that brand of firearms. For example, I reprint over 60 Remington factory gun catalogs but I also reprint over 160 gun catalogs from merchants that sold Remington firearms such as Sears or Abercrombie & Fitch or Spalding. Those are the listings on the right of the page.

Using the merchant links, you can identify a catalog from just about any year that displays the Remington line and by looking at the individual page indexes you can figure out what models were made in what year without spending a dime. Of course I would be happy to sell you those catalogs too! Most major gunmakers have a "master page" and I am adding more all the time.

* You can increase the size of the text on the screen by holding down the Control key (that's the one in the lower left of the keyboard with Ctrl on it) and scrolling the wheel on top of your mouse back and forth.

copy clips image

* Whenever I scan a delicate old catalog I use my book scanner. The catalog hangs over the side of the scanner and only needs to be opened 90 degrees. This puts much less stress on the spine.

So there you have it, a tip that I hope will result in a torrent of eager collectors now willing to let me scan their old gun catalogs... but, please call or write first, don't just send them because I may already have scans of that particular item. I still have hundreds of old catalogs on file that I haven't got to yet.

* How to pay for things on the internet while using your credit card with some safety... You have to make certain the site accepting your credit card is secure. Normally the site URL begins with http: etc. but a secure site has a different beginning. It starts with https:. etc. The "S" means the site is using encryption software and it is pretty safe to send your card information to the company if you trust the company! By the way, do not send your credit card information in an email. Emails are NOT secure!

Many folks call me to give me an order over the telephone because they "don't like to use their credit cards on the internet". Well, every time you use your credit card at stores, banks, gas stations, restaurants or anywhere else, the transaction is recorded on the internet! Do you trust the company you are giving the info to?

Gun Model & Makers, Parts Suppliers and Appraisers

Maker/Model - Cross Reference Link:

House Brand, Model Number, Original Manufacturer, Original Model


email William E Sterner Bill is certified by the American Gunsmithing Institute as an appraiser. His website for Black Shepherd Firearms Appraisal


Mike Rich, owner of I HAVE THIS OLD GUN. Send Mike an email to get started. Prices for a written appraisal begins as low as $35.00.

We get hundreds of calls about parts.

Some folks selling parts for old guns...

Free Downloads

Serial Numbers and Corresponding Dates:


Abby and Rob