Benjamin Haviland, George P. Gunn and the “Morse” Air Pistol (1872 to c. 1881)

In this article we will follow the life and career of one of the late 19th century American airgun pioneers as well as that of his business partner. We will discover how his ingenious and unwaning passion helped to pioneer the way ahead for our airgun heritage with his earliest designs still commonly in use today. We may also discover why George Gunn’s repeating “Gem” style air rifle was, perhaps, never realised. It could be said that Haviland and Gunn’s, or perhaps just Gunn’s influence on spring airgun development could be considered so significant that they could be called the fathers of the modern spring airgun. After all, their designs are the basis of all break-barrel airguns and can still be seen in airguns that are made today. How’s that for a legacy? Continue reading “Benjamin Haviland, George P. Gunn and the “Morse” Air Pistol (1872 to c. 1881)”

Iver Johnson, Martin Bye and the “Champion” Air Pistol (1876 to c. 1893)

This article takes us on a journey through history as we follow the lives of two inspiring Norwegian entrepreneurs from the late 19th century. It’s full of new beginnings, adventure, war, the construction of an empire and its downfall, successes and failures, loss and sadness and an assassination or two…. it’s a real rollercoaster! Take your time though, it’s another epically long one…. Continue reading “Iver Johnson, Martin Bye and the “Champion” Air Pistol (1876 to c. 1893)”

Henry Marcus Quackenbush and the Quackenbush Model 1 Air Rifle (mfd. 1876 to 1938)

In this article, I am going to talk about extension ladders, nut crackers, oh, and a whole load of airguns! We’ve encountered Quackenbush in a couple of previous articles and now it is his turn to be center stage. Continue reading “Henry Marcus Quackenbush and the Quackenbush Model 1 Air Rifle (mfd. 1876 to 1938)”

The “Eureka” (1876 to c. 1893) by Augustus Bedford and George A. Walker

In this article, I will attempt to tell the story of another facet of the late 19th century American air gun industry. We shall learn about the relationship between three important pioneers of early American air guns whilst investigating Bedford and Walker’s Eureka air pistol. We will also discover the first bolt-action breech seal that is still used in today’s modern airguns. Continue reading “The “Eureka” (1876 to c. 1893) by Augustus Bedford and George A. Walker”

Albert Augustus Pope and The Pope Brothers Rifle Air Pistol (1874-1878)

In March 2016, I was asked by Danny Garvin of the Vintage Airgun Gallery, if I would write an article for Issue 3 of the Airgun Collector, an online magazine full of wonderful vintage airguns and superbly written articles. I was honoured to be included amongst such highly acclaimed authors and collectors. Danny’s introduction for the article seems a good place to start this article… Continue reading “Albert Augustus Pope and The Pope Brothers Rifle Air Pistol (1874-1878)”

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