Calls from the Wilds



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 "A gun is like a parachute.  If you need one, and don't have one. You'll probably never need one again."


A tough old cowboy from Montana counseled his granddaughter that if she wanted to live a long life, the secret was to sprinkle a pinch of gun powder on her oatmeal every morning. The granddaughter did this religiously until the age of 103, when she died. She left behind 14 children, 30 grandchildren, 45 great-grandchildren, 25 great-great-grandchildren, and a 40-foot hole where the crematorium used to be.

Thanks to John Campbell

Civil War Pictures


This is a poignant collection of photos, most of which I've not seen before. The format is a Power Point presentation so you need to have that Office program on your computer to view the file. It is also 10mb so you would want a fairly quick internet connection. Civil War Pictures (Power Point File- 10 megs). By the way, the file is available with dozens of other free downloads from our "FREE Downloads" link on the left, middle at our website.

Thanks to John Campbell

Air Pano


AirPano is a not-for-profit project focused on high-resolution spherical panorama shots from a bird’s eye view. Being the largest resource for 360° aerial panoramas in the world – by geographical coverage, number of aerial photographs, and artistic and technical quality of the images, AirPano has already photographed over two hundred most interesting locations on our planet. There are nearly two thousand 360° panoramas on their website now. (Link to the website is the title Air Pano above and the link to the bears and other winners of the Epson contest are the picture)

Thanks to Chris Jones and others

Photoshop or Extravagant Pluck?

Thanks to John Campbell

We saw a nifty snowman in Fenton, MI last month so our friend Mimsy sent a few more:

here are a couple of leftovers from last month:

...had enough snow yet?

Canada's next-generation military smart gun unveiled... right out of Robocop!

Thanks to John Campbell

We used to complain about the 7:02 from Stamford...



Arms Heritage Magazine

Winans Steam Gun

Of all the bizarre weapons of the Civil War, the Winans Steam Gun may have been the weirdest.

Winans Steam GunRoss Winans was a wealthy builder of locomotives and an avowed secessionist. His steam-powered gun was intended to be a weapon against the Yankees in the event they decided to enter Baltimore. The weapon was placed on display in Baltimore where it attracted a great deal of attention. Shortly thereafter, he intended to move it to Harpers Ferry and turn it over to the Confederate forces. It never made it there. The Federal forces captured it en route and were apparently mystified as to its workings. Either parts were intentionally missing or the mechanism was totally impractical as there is no record of it having been tested.

Although the device bears Winans' name, it was actually designed and built in Ohio by William Joslin and Charles Dickinson.

The concept of steam-powered weapons was hardly new, numerous ideas and patents had been developed and patented in both Britain and the United States in the years preceding the Civil War. Most of these ideas utilized centrifugal force, generated by propelling a projectile around a "raceway" to gain momentum before it was ejected toward a target. The first U.S. patent dates back to 1838, issued to Robert McCarty for a centrifugal steam-powered weapon advertised to throw "480 rounds".

William Joslin took out a patent on a centrifugal "machine gun" in 1859, under his own name, for a device developed by he and Dickinson jointly. The omission of Dickinson's name from the patent angered him and the partnership was abandoned. Dickinson then developed his own patent, the one that would become the basis for the Winans device.

Numerous accounts of exactly how the gun worked were published in various organs of the press. One described it thus--"The writer was present when the gun was tested and reported that its projectiles perforated a one-inch thick plank. The person demonstrating it (with a hand crank) indicated that with steam power it would send bullet after bullet with so nice an accuracy that (the enemy) would disappear in one spot". Another indicated that "it was proved at the exhibition that it would throw to a distance of one mile with precision and effect from 400 to 500 two-ounce balls per minute, with a horizontal sweep of 120 degrees".

The complete story of the Steam Gun will be told in a future issue of Arms Heritage Magazine as a part of an ongoing series on technical innovations of the Civil War. Subscriptions permit total access to all previous issues, now numbering 25. Just go to ARMS HERITAGE online and subscribe for only $19 per year.

With the help of Cornell Publications all three “Annual Compendiums”, each containing all bi-monthly magazines for the year are now available in beautifully bound sets. We have removed all commercial advertising and redundant material and the volumes are now pure articles on arms and related topics. Our fourth year, hard copy annual will be available in April. Annuals for years 1, 2 and 3 can now be purchased at Cornell Publication at $39.95 each plus shipping.

Cornell Publications years one through three

Check in at Arms Heritage Magazine online!

New Books and Special Thanks

You can always see the reprints added during the last six months by clicking on the Recent Additions link to my website. Special thanks to Erin Scalar and Dennis La Varénne, for letting us borrow their wonderful old catalogs and manuals to copy.

Auto-Ordnance c1995 - Thompson 6th Edition

Ben Pearson 1964 Golden Sovereign Catalog

Browning FN c1954 Model A & B Automatic Rifles

Charter Arms 1982 Handgun & AR-7 Flyers (3)

Charter Arms c1966 Handgun and AR-7 Catalog

Colt 1875 Gun Flyer

Colt 1931, February Gun Catalog and Price Sheet

Colt- Wells Fargo 1849- Numis Gallery Replica

Dan Wesson 1976 Catalog & Price Sheet

Halcon c1955 Fabrica de Armes Halcom S.A.I., Argentina

Jonathon Arthur Ciener 1981 Suppressed Firearms w/prices

Llama & Luger c1965 Firearms by Stoeger

Mauser c1939 Luger Auto Pistol Parabellum Manual

Miroku c1980 Handgun Flyer

Puma-Solingen c1960s Hunting and Clasp Knife Catalog

Remington 1876 Handgun and Rifle Flyer

Remington Gun Museum 1966 150th Anniversary

Rifle Ammunition 1859 Notes on The Manufacture (UK)

Rifles and Ammunition and Rifle Shooting 1915 (UK)

Sauer, JP 1981 Shotguns imported by Weatherby w/prices

Sears - JC Higgins 1949 Bolt Action Shotgun Manual

Smith & Wesson 1957 Handgun Flyer

Sterling Arms 1976 Handgun Catalog w/prices, Gasport, NY

Steyr 1983 SWAT Arms for Police w/prices

Steyr-Mannlicher Schoenauer Repeating Sporting Rifles c1985 (in German-Catalog)

The Modern Rifle 1917 -Practical Exterior Ballistics for Hunters and Marksmen

The Pistol and Revolver 1908 (NY)

West Point in the Early (Eighteen) Sixties With Incidents of War - 1902

* 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

Dear cornellpubs, Hi! I'm trying to find a picture or any information about a flobert rolling bar 22 that was my great grandfathers and was wondering if this book will help me identify it? Thanks!! Neh - mistymeadows54 (Ebay)

Dear Neh, I really don't know. Many Flobert guns were rolling “block” and others used different actions. Not knowing more about the gun it is impossible to tell if your specific gun is discussed in the book. I picture doesn't really help because we don't do that sort of research. What you have is a research project where, over time you learn more and more about the weapon. Best, Rob

Dear Abby, my gun forum guys said I may be able to order a copied version of Vol 1 & 2 of the Handbook for Reloaders by Ackley from you. I would like to order both volumes if you would please tell me how to go about doing that. You can reach me by email. I am in Arizona. Thanks, Anita

Dear anita, Sure you can. I'll put a link to all the Ackley books we reprint below and you can select exactly what you want. Just click the "Buy it" link and follow your nose... Cheers, Rob


Dear cornellpubs, FN FAL Light Automatic Rifle Competition Model manual Is this item's context in English throughout or Belgian? princess2moons (Ebay)

Dear princess… “17 pages, about 11" x 8", glossy soft-cover in full color. New re-print restored and digitally enhanced from a nice original. Printed on high quality 20# 97 bright acid free paper. Fully Illustrated. Nice manual except the parts diagram which is a bit light. Text is in English”

Dear cornellpubs, The case should have been closed right? I received the refund. I don't know, my actions show nothing besides the usual and "hide order" but it never goes away. Twilight zone type thing, ground hog day. - newshoes1718 (Ebay)

Dear newsh… I don't know what Ebay has in mind and tel calls to them might solve it. I can't do that from my end but you could try. I know it is difficult but why it is way over my pay grade! Main thing is you got your money back. Rob Mouat

Dear Abby and Rob, In answer to Serge Brisebois question in your newsletter, the March/April 2015 issue of Shooting Sportsman has an article on J.P. Clabrough on page 54 and information on a new book by Larry Shelton: J.P. Clabrough--Birmingham Gunmaker that can be purchased by contacting the author directly.

Dear cornellpubs, hello, I have noticed your reprints of catalogues for the Ross Rifle....... I believe that I have an original Ross Rifle catalogue; however, the cover says "catalogue No. 5" and does not indicate a year of publication........ can you tell me the year of publication for this catalogue? thank you.. TRD Claremont, NH – lorensgrampie (Ebay)

Dear TRD, Not offhand. What you have is interesting though and I would love to have a copy of it to add to the preserved catalogs we have already processed. If you would like to lend it to me (that is how we have built the collection of digitized manuals and catalogs to over 5000- people lend them to us), I'll make a scan of it and compare it to the other ones we have to see if we can figure out the date for yours. If this is satisfactory please send it to Abby Mouat, PO Box 214, Brighton, MI 48116. Please insure is for some amount to help keep the post office vigilant and I'll promptly return it the same way. Thanks so much, Abby (sadly we got no response)

Dear cornellpubs, do you have any more gambling supply catalogues? I am interested in purchasing some from different companies in this time period. Or can you put me in contact with others that might have some. Thanks jeff – jeffseiver (Ebay)

Jeff, No other gaming catalogs by themselves, I just thought that one was interesting. Rob

Rob, is the catalogue that I purchased an original or is it a reprint??? - jeffseiver

Jeff, All 3500 catalogs we offer on Ebay are reprints, including this one- see the description: "64 pages, about 6" x 8", glossy soft-cover in full color. New re-print restored and digitally enhanced from a nice original. Printed on high quality 20# 97 bright acid free paper. Fully Illustrated." Rob

Dear Rob, Winchester Model 12 Catalog Pages? I collect Winchester Model 12's. Do you reprint just the pages for Winchester Model 12 shotguns from Winchester Catalogs? If so, I would be interested, I don't need the whole catalog. Please quote a price per page. Thank you, Mike Cheney

Dear Mike, Because of the time it would take to do that it would cost you more than the catalogs, a huge job. Cheers, Rob

Dear cornellpubs, hi, does this catalog show the single barrel trap gun in Monogram grade? thanks! Gary – gscherbert (Ebay)

Dear Gary, No, only the double Monogram is shown. The single is listed on the price sheet. Rob

thanks Rob! just out of curiosity, what was the price of the single? – gscherbert

Dear Rob, I purchased three Hubley Sales Catalog Re-prints. 1971, 1973, 1975. Total $47.35 on 02/05/15. All the descriptions indicated the catalogs were “full” color. The 1971 catalog is in B&W with the exception of the cover and back page. My understanding is all Hubley sales catalogs are in full color. Is it possible this 1971 is a copy of a copy made in B&W? I am doing a research project of original Hubley vehicles produced after 1965 when Hubley was acquired by Gabriel Industries. Hubley legacy toys that continued to be produced starting in 1966 went through numerous changes, mostly color and accessories offered. Having access to the full color sales catalogs post 1965 is reason I acquired these reprints from you. Although knowing what vehicles were discontinued from a previous year, not seeing the color renditions of those remaining toys for 1971 is not helpful in B&W. Please advise any suggestions you may have. I would prefer a full color sales catalog if you in fact have this. If not I would be willing to keep the B&W until a color catalog comes along if you issued me a discounted refund. Please advise… Bill (Ebay)

Dear Bill, I have some answers for you. First the 1971. That original catalog was printed in B&W (see the image that shows an inside page in B&W), also '69-70 were recession years and that might have contributed to the Hubley decision. The color reference you mention refers to the cover which was (and our copy has) in color. If the insides are in color, the image accompanying the ad shows that and later in the description we state the catalog is printed in color. Also, the price is also lower for catalogs with the insides in B&W. For example, this is the description of the 1972 Hubley: “Hubley 1972 Toy and Cap Gun Catalog. 51 pages, about 11" x 8", glossy soft-cover in full color. New COLOR re-print restored and digitally enhanced from a nice original. Printed on high quality 20# 97 bright acid free paper. Fully Illustrated.” Sorry if this is confusing, Best wishes, Rob

Hi Abby, Just received my order today and took a flip through the three books I purchased. Basically, they're awesome. They offer superb instructions and diagrams on the breakdown of the guns they mention, which is exactly what I was looking for. For all guns I buy in the future, I'll definitely be buying the manuals and catalogs from you to match. Thanks! –Bryce

Dear Rob, In your list of (free-ed)pdfs for Arms and the Man, 03-18-1918 is a broken link. Also all of the 1918s listed all point the same pdf for 12-21-1918. Thought you might like to know. Paul Murphy

Thanks Paul, Fixed it. Rob

Dear cornellpubs, Hall, Frank P. Co. 1910 Gun Catalog (Ohio) just wondering if there is an ad in this book for the Eclipse Minnow made by Omer Immel under the lure section. I am interested in a few books if there is. Can you please send me a pic of the page that has it so I can verify that it is the correct lure before I order? Thanks, Brian in WI – backsplashlures (Ebay)

Dear Brian, I don’t think so. Rob

Dear Cornellpubs, I could not find an approximate original print date for #2695 on the website or on the pamphlet I bought. Do you have circa date for "Mauser Pistole Luger 9mm paraellum manuel"? Thank you either way! David Tague

David, I'm sorry, it is undated if I don't list a date and if there is no circa then I have no idea. Cheers, Rob

Dear cornellpubs, When are you going to ship this item? it was paid for a few days ago and should be sent soon. - bc_archer (Ebay)

Dear bc... I'm sorry, it takes us several days to record, print, bind, pack and ship each time we sell because with so many titles we have no inventory, we print to order. You see we reprint over 5000 different publications and it takes that long (we do state that in our Ebay advertisement). You ordered Friday, your book was printed on Saturday and will ship today (we were at a gunshow Sunday and yesterday). Cheers, Rob

Abby, Thank you for my first instalment of your Newsletter once again your rants and raves have left me bewildered and in hysterics at the ineptitude of some people. Octavian

Hi Folks, Just want to express my thanks & appreciation for your newsletters. I look forward to receiving them & spend vast blocks of time reading through them...over & over !! At present, it is almost 3:00 in the morning. Thanks for keeping me company. All the very best, Dave Hardy

AyA Aguirre y Aranzabal Gun Catalog. My Shotgun Model: 106, Sn: 444312, I want to suppress this model's original catalog. Can you help? Best regards. oguz filiz

Dear Oguz, All our catalog reprints list the contents of the catalog. If the catalog has a model 106 listed it is in the catalog. Cheers, Rob

Dear Abby, I always look forward to these news letters,I have a few of your manuals and have inquired about others, thank you on this cold -35 Feb day for the great read and old historical pictures. Bruce

Rob and Abby, I just wanted to say a colleague of mine gets your newsletter and passes it over to me each time and I have never been so interested in an e-mail. You manage to link good information with amusing anecdotes and videos that really help the time fly. I love your rants and raves as they certainly highlight the sort of numpties we all deal with in life and yet you somehow manage to make them all seem trivial and farcical with your brilliant slant on the topics. I especially loved this week’s edition in regards to the missing book, it was so well put that no recourse is available but for the person involved to sit in a corner with a conical hat on. Please keep up the excellent work. You guys rock, Regards, James McKenna

Dear Rob, Has anyone ever published a book on pistol magazine identification? If so, do you have a reprint? If not, some magazine collector really needs to write one. It seems to me that there would be a good market. Sincerely, Gerald Garner

Dear Gerald, Wow, that sound like a book of 10,000 pages! Rob

Dear Abby: I of course enjoyed your latest newsletter. Regarding the fellow named rita, who needs drawings of the internals of Hopkins and Allen actions, there' are two chapters about them with those drawings in Frank deHaas' book Single Shot rifles and Actions, pp. 201 - 216. I can offer copies of them to rita if you can give me an email or snail mail address. Rudi Prusok, erstwhile ASSRA Archivist.

Dear Abby, I have recently acquired a shotgun manufactured by Jules Gervais, of Anvers (Antwerp). The piece is of very fine quality - chopper lump barrels, Poldi steel barrels, reticulated trigger, excellent wood to metal fit etc. It is a box lock. Probably 1920 - 30. I am unable to find much information on the gunmaker apart from a French heritage - three generations of Gervais were gunmakers. Any possibility that you might have any data on this manufacturer? Yours, or any of your readers' assistance would be much appreciated. Thanks for your interesting e-mails . A source of valued info. Regards. John Newton. Australia.

John, We have no information about Gervais. He appears to be one of the many Belgian gunmakers from prior to the Second War. You might learn some about the industry from our books about the trade in Belgium (I'll list them below). Also You could Google "Jules Gervais shotgun" and find there are several mentions at websites.

Cheers, Abby Readers?

Hi guys, over the years I’ve bought a few publications from you an I have always been pleased with the results. When I’m chasing old publications I always check your listings first. Congratulations on a fine enterprise, keep up the good work. Regards, Ian Sutherland

Dear Abby, Received the manual today and looks like the one I misplaced many years ago. I bought this rifle which as you know is the civilian model of the M16 after returning from Vietnam in the early 1970's, fired it a few times and put it away until of late. Anyway, now it is complete again! Have your info. On file now and maybe will be using your service again. Also, like the way you do business! Thanks Again, John Boggs-Kingston, Ohio

Dear Abby, Subject: recent order for Sig SP47/8 (model 1935A), Thank you very much for this wonderful manual. Fast shipping and great quality. Thank you for all both of you do. Mario

Dear Abby, 28 ga union arms pump shotgun. I have a very old shotgun built by "The Union Arms Co. the dates are hard to make out but it looks like Dec 28 1939 May 16 "I cant read the year" the numbers under where shells would be loaded are 230766 under that a 2 6. I would like to restore it but can not find anything on the gun. currently it is not in working order. its starting to look like a one of a kind. can you help at all? Jim Cummins

Jim, If you look up Union Firearms in our alphabetical list you will get to a page that gives you some history. We have two catalogs by the company, one with a parts diagram for the guns they were making then. I would guess the date you suggest is not correct but the real date could be earlier- see the history.

Good luck, Abby

Comments or Questions?

email Abby and Rob

Rants and Raves

Rants and Raves image

This month's winner is:

So how do I know it's a reprint? Do you or are you required to print Cornell Pubs on the reprint? Robert (Ebay)

Dear Robert... We reprint over 5000 old gun and archery catalogs but most are bound differently than originals so there will be no confusion and we do put our name on the back cover. Why do you ask? Cheers, Abby

Because I have what I thought to be an original and wanted to be sure. – Robert

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. Abby


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" or "never use their credit card on the internet". Well, every time you use your credit card at a store, bank, gas station, restaurant or anywhere else, your card goes on the internet whether you like it or not! The trick is to trust the company you are dealing with. So, just how trustworthy do you think your card was with that greasy little fellow at the restaurant yesterday?

How to pay for things on the internet while using your credit card with some safety...

First, you have to make certain the site accepting your credit card is secure. Normally a webpage URL begins with http: etc. but a secure site payment page must have a different beginning. It must start with https:. etc. The "S" means the site is using encryption software and it might be 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!


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...

Serial Numbers and Corresponding Dates:


Abby and Rob