Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Ladies' Gun

"Fancy women invited to English gentleman's room in sedate Windsor Hotel, in Denver, shoot at insulators in Larimer Street telegraph poles. (Drawing from American West by Lucius Beebe and Charles Clegg.)"
in The Fireside Book of Guns, Harold L. Peterson, Simon Schuster, New York, 1959.

How many rules are being violated in this drawing? Sheeze. 
The gun knew no limits. It even had its place in the world of brawling entertainment and profane love. No fancy woman of the middle 1800s would ply her trade in the dance halls, saloons, and bordellos unarmed. For her a very small weapon was desirable even if it lacked real punch. No man, in the code of the day, would shoot at a woman even though she might pot at him with her little .22. Thus the tiny single shot guns became popular "stocking" and "bosom" weapons-- the smaller the better. 
Between 1865 and 1888 over 25,000 Remington Vest Pocket .22s were made. And get this. It weighed just three and seven-eighths ounces. 

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