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Image result for winchester 1897 gif  Winchester 1897 Pump-Action Shotgun

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Winchester 1897 was the improved follow on to the 1893 pump action shotgun.  Notice the external hammer.  A popular feature of this shotgun was its "slam fire" capability.  As you can see from the top video, you can keep the trigger depressed and every time that you pump the action it will automatically fire.  This impressive rate of fire with substantial 12 gauge buck shot gave US troops in WW I trenches at least parity with the new Imperial German submachine guns. 

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British Bulldog Revolvers

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These little double action revolvers were as popular as they are reliable.  The "originals" were chambered in .442, which was an adequate round.  A cheaper ".44 Bulldog" round was made in the US since .442 was a little pricey.   Despite the substantial slug the best way to describe the little ".44 Bulldog" bullets is cute.

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Since an uncountable number of small Belgium manufacturers made British Bulldog revolvers (some restyled to resemble Colts or S&Ws) and even more knock off of knock offs were manufactured in the US and who knows where else, there is no way to say how many were made in total. 

I was lucky enough to find an "English Bulldog" (knock off of a knock off of a....) and it is a fun little 130+ year old gun.  Not a target shooter but very reliable even by modern standards and unusually loud, possibly on purpose.  I admit that I carry my 130-ish year old antique as a bear/wolf deterrent. 

Since they were double action they were popular back up guns even in the wild West.  Supposedly Billy the Kid carried a Bulldog revolver.  History

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There are still "Bulldog" revolvers being made today because reliable slug throwers do not go out of fashion.  Many are chambered in .44 Special.  The most infamous British Bulldog was used to assassinate US President Garfield. 

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Belgian Frontier Bulldog

The revolver was a copy of the Webley RIC, chambered for the British .442 Webley and .450 Revolver cartridges and American .44-40 W.C.F. It had a closed frame.

It included a cartridge ejector and a loading port on the right side of the body. It functioned in double action. The sights were fixed, and the barrel was generally rounded and sometimes had a flat top. The grips were checkered wood, embossed/molded hard rubber, or other materials, and a lanyard ring was sometimes fitted to the butt.

It was produced by the firm J.B. Rongé & Sons of Liege, and primarily sold to the United States through the mail-order Sears-Roebuck catalog and Montgomery Ward. The base price was US$3.80, compared to $12 for a Smith & Wesson .44 Double Action in the same calibre.

Image result for belgian frontier bulldog revolverImage result for belgian frontier bulldog revolverImage result for belgian frontier bulldog revolver

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Ancion Marx Bulldog

      I just remembered I have the Sears 1912 catalog in pdf.  I think this may be the same pistol, and look, right below it is the Remington Derringer.  Too bad we don't still have 1912 prices today!

        The Derringer.

      The original "Philidelphia Deringer" was introduced in 1852 by Henry Deringer.  These were single shot muzzle loading percussion cap pistols with rifled barrels, and walnut grips.  They were usually .41 caliber, and sold in pairs for $15 to $25 per pair.  Production ended in 1868.  This was the type of handgun used by John Wilkes Booth to assassinate President Abraham Lincoln in 1865.

      These guns were very popular, and copied by many different manufacturers, which led to the common misspelling of the name, and the word "derringer" being used to describe any small, concealable pistol that was not a revolver, or semiautomatic.

      The best known pistol of this type in the old west was the Remington Derringer.  Over 150,000 pistols in four models were manufactured from 1866 to 1935, all in .41 rimfire.  A round was loaded into each of the over and under barrels, and a cam on the hammer alternated between them.

       The bullet traveled at only 425 feet per second, slow enough to be seen in flight, but at short distances, such as across a card table, it could still be deadly.

      More on the "Derringer".  With little else to do, I've begun reading historical information about well known gunmen of the Old West.  Although not known for using them, James Butler "Wild Bill" Hickok is said to have owned a pair of Williamson Derringers.  These were single shot and breech loaded, with a 2.5 inch rifled barrel.  They fired the same .41 rimfire cartridge as the Remington.  They also came with a blackpowder cap and ball adapter(!).  About 40,000 of them were manufactured between 1866 and 1870.  They were available in a number of different finishes, and grip materials.  So far, I haven't run across an exact description of the type carried by Wild Bill, but it wouldn't surprise me at all to learn that his had ivory grips, like his better known Colt 1851 Navy revolvers.

Good find.  Local badman, Jefferson "Soapy" Smith liked carrying Derringers too.

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After the Bulldog and Derringer we have to keep the run going so  Iver Johnson

Iver Johnson was an immigrant who manufactured bicycles, motorcycles, and revolvers, so a pretty steamy gentleman.

This is just my personal opinion but Iver Johnson was sort of a Smith&Wesson take off in that most revolvers featured a similar top break design and even fired the same ammunition.  Iver Johnson did offer some innovative safety features making their revolvers easier to carry in a pocket like the "safety hammerless" design although this was not exclusive to Iver Johnson.

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Iver Johnson did make more than revolvers especially after the company was sold.

Image result for Iver Johnson revolver displayVery DieselPunk. 

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President McKinley's assassin used a .32 Iver Johnson revolver in 1901.  History

Image result for forgotten guns of the westWild Bill Hickock's Colt NavysImage result for forgotten guns of the westPaterson

Image result for colt walkerImage result for colt walkerColt Walker

Showing its bad habit of jamming by dropping the charging arm.  Catches were added to later cap & ball revolvers.  A Colt Single Action video. 

It is getting hard to practice these days but this article might help: 

      OK, one of the things that vexes me, to some extent, is trying to identify weapons (like revolvers, lever action rifles, &c.) in movies and television shows,  For instance, I'm watching the movie Virus right now, and saw a top-break revolver.  At first I thought:  Schofield!  But no, the latch was in the wrong place.  So then I thought, well, regular Model 3.  Nope.  So I have to conclude it's a Webley.  Indiana Jones aside, I can't help but see the Webley as an imitation of the Model 3.  Now the Webley-Fosbery is a different matter.  It's a really steampunkish gun!  Nothing like a self-cocking, and self-cycling revolver!  Why doesn't someone put one of THOSE in a movie?


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