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now thats a name i haven't heard in awhile, gene hill. i always liked him too!!!!! pat mcmanus and h g tapply were another. i know of corey ford, i think i've read him in old F&S? magazines, but i'm not sure. gary sitton (petersen's hunting) was a good one too. oh, and john wootters' "buck sense" monthly article. i always wondered about Bucky.

in the late 90s it was all about product, not the hunt. i think it was rick jamison (shooting times) was the last great gun writer that i've read for. when the gun industry & "writers" finally came out in 1999, the "gun rags" was all they were used for. craig boddington and dave petzal could have been on my list, but they got away from writing about the hunt to writing the products that they used.
 

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Considering the number of known characters of the past and their contributions to the gun enthusiast crowd? I find more'n several folks here, I hold in greater esteem. One exception, I'm a life long 'Skeeter' fan.
 

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Everybody has somebody that has taught lessons or led them in a particular path. it might be sombody that everyone knows (and has differing opinions of) or it might be the old guy down the street that helped you learn how to reload. The important thing is that we got the help we needed and give the folks that helped the respect we feel it deserved. For someone else to come along and dismiss that respect just turns himself into a piece of work that nobody wants to listen to.

If you have a writer or a neighbor that you respect because what you learned then say it proudly. If somebody says something negative just remember the nay sayers haven't taught you anything.
 

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Everybody has somebody that has taught lessons or led them in a particular path. it might be sombody that everyone knows (and has differing opinions of) or it might be the old guy down the street that helped you learn how to reload. The important thing is that we got the help we needed and give the folks that helped the respect we feel it deserved. For someone else to come along and dismiss that respect just turns himself into a piece of work that nobody wants to listen to.

If you have a writer or a neighbor that you respect because what you learned then say it proudly. If somebody says something negative just remember the nay sayers haven't taught you anything.


the "old guy" was my gunsmith(RIP) and later friend, that taught me how to reload. he also taught me some gunsmithing too. i'm a "shade tree" rifle doer;) ,not a real gunsmith. my dad taught me how shoot and hunt. i learned all on my own:unsure:, that speed is not king, but penetration is emperor of all.
 

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Elk Whisperer (Super Moderator)
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Grits Greshamh was the ultimate gun writer. Told on himself all the time and told it how it really happened. He didn't always get the biggest but he always got a "trophy" to eat.

RJ
 

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When I was young and just getting into handguns (fifty+ years ago) I heard about Elmer Keith and the stories about his incredible shooting feats. He supposedly did things with a handgun that bordered on mythical and had skills no mere mortal could ever hope to acquire. What that did to an impressionable young guy was make him want to be the best shooter he could be, even if he'd never achieve anything close to what Elmer could do. I bought his books like "****, I was there" and I think the other one was "Sixguns". They've long since been gone, given away quite a few years ago. As I grew older and shot more and more I began to have some nagging doubts about Elmer Keith's abilities. I have no doubt that in his day he was one of the best long range handgun shooters of his time. People talked about him as though he could routinely shoot deer at six hundred yards and perform all other sorts of magical shooting. Years went by and I shot with and met some of the best long range handgun shooters that existed in todays time and place. Some of them were very impressive, but not even close to what Elmer Keith was given credit for being able to do. My belief today is that Elmer got a lot of publicity and dime novel story telling. I do believe he was a great shot with a handgun, and if he were shooting today he'd be one of the best....but, his greatest contribution to handgunning was getting many young hunters and shooters into handgun hunting. It got me into it. For almost forty years I hunted deer with firearms exclusively with handguns. I've gotten past that some the last few years with when I discovered one of Elmrer's other favorite pastimes, single shot rifles. Anyway, I'll give him credit where he's factually due: Elmer Keith got thousands of shooters into handgun hunting and shooting. He was the single biggest promoter of using handguns to hunt big game and to practice until they could do it with success. He falls short a bit on ethics though, he also got a lot of people taking shots way, way beyond their ability. He's still one of the best promoters of handgun hunting up to this point in our history.
Elmer Keith hunted in the mountainous Salmon River Country, which turned back Lewis and Clark, sending them back across Lemhi Pass, on the Continental Divide. Elmer was part sharp shooter, part artilleryman, who always had a rock or bush above his target to hold his sight on! And that’s how he pot shot that 600 yd. Buck, with a four inch barreled S & W 44 Rem Mag. Those first 44 Mags. Had longish hammer falls, so Keith never flinched the tiniest bit! The Indians called these shots, “shoot today, kill tomorrow” guns. One way or another, he made his living in the Salmon River Breaks for most of his days. Plus he lived amongst elderly pioneers who had moved in from days when. Buffalo roamed the plains in nearby Wyoming.
Late in life he was a real Westerner who developed into a gun writer. But if he bragged he made a certain shot, “he Made that shot”
 

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We wouldn't recognize the current state of shooting, hunting and firearms technology without the machinations of Mr. Keith. This is particularly true of handgun hunting, silhouette shooting (with "hand" guns) and big game hunting. Except for the Honorable Col. Jeff Cooper, I know of no other firearms authority who left so indelible a mark on firearms technology and firearms sports.
We'll not soon see their like, again.
 

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Too bad all the people that really knew Elmer (PTOOEY) are dead.

He wasn't afraid to take credit for someone elses idea and I don't think he ever really had an original one of his own.

There's a whole lot more better pistol shooters than him.

RJ
 

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Elk Whisperer (Super Moderator)
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No, S&W got tired of him blowing up their 21's. So many they refused to keep fixing them so Charlie O'Neill (the "O" of OKH) got the job. Do in cahoots with Remington along came the 44 Magnum.

My Dad had a "refurbished" 21 that Charlie put together from parts, vented rib, adjustable sights, extended grip but alas Charlie passed away before it was finished. My nephew has it now.

RJ
 

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.......Don't forget ........ Pat McManus....
Some of the best outdoor humor there is. I think I bought and read all of his books over the years. Perhaps the best short story ever was "MY FIRST DEER; AND WELCOME TO IT". The story of going hunting on his bicycle.🤣🤣🤣
 

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Without Elmer and the interest he inspired to shoot handguns with good sights in the field, we wouldn't have had the Blackhawks, Freedom Arms, TC Contenders and so many more 'hunting handguns'. He put target guns outdoors but needed more 'power' to make them effective.
Thanks, Elmer and thanks to the editors that made him readable.
 
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Without Elmer and the interest he inspired to shoot handguns with good sights in the field, we wouldn't have had the Blackhawks, Freedom Arms, TC Contenders and so many more 'hunting handguns'. He put target guns outdoors but needed more 'power' to make them effective.
Thanks, Elmer and thanks to the editors that made him readable.
Keep in mind, if Elmer wasn't spilling ink on large bore handguns, Phil Sharpe, John Lachuck, and Doug Wesson would have gotten us there.

Elmer wasn't the only one pursuing by a long shot; he was just the one who got the most attention to "the cause".
 

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Some of the best outdoor humor there is. I think I bought and read all of his books over the years. Perhaps the best short story ever was "MY FIRST DEER; AND WELCOME TO IT". The story of going hunting on his bicycle.🤣🤣🤣
I was also a huge fan of Patrick F. :D Our childhoods mimicked each other enough that it was almost spooky!! His writing on black powder firearms is still one of my favorites. He went from horribly built crude prototypes to poorly built crude prototypes! :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO:

One thing not talked about much is the research done by a lot of the Writers for magazines and especially newspapers. Most of those guys have three or four projects going on at once and many times need help with testing, reloads, gun reviews, etc. My best friend from College has a brother that was working as a Gunsmith while putting himself through College and Law School and he did a ton of testing for a number of the Texas newspaper writers and even a few magazine guys back in the late 60's through the 70's. He still works on things for family and makes some custom guns, but is mostly retired and travels between Texas and Montana now. The kind of life I wished I had.

I have to admit that I don't read much of the newer stuff written except on-line, and I really don't know who to trust as there are a bajillion guys out there trying to make a name for themselves in the business.

I do miss the old days as a kid as my Dad subscribed to all of the Outdoor Mags back then.

Oh, to be young again!
 

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Elmer was part sharp shooter, part artilleryman, who always had a rock or bush above his target to hold his sight on!
By pure coincidence, I've been reading Sixguns this last week for the first time. That's not how he describes it there. He described putting horizontal lines on the front sight to register level with the top edge of the rear sight, so the front sight post would stick up above the rear sight by the right amount to allow him to hold the top edge of the post on the target itself. He mentioned a front sight post design with multiple such horizontal lines for different ranges. I confess it intrigued me a bit because I used to shoot at paper plates and tin cans at 100 yards with my 1911, but always just estimated holding a foot over to compensate for the drop. That worked, but as you observed, there isn't always something to hold on so it's easy to start drifting left or right of the target if you don't get the shot off pretty promptly. I made a version of that kind of shot at Gunsite during the 270 class. We were in a wadi and practicing clearing around bends. Coming around one, I spotted the faint outline of the top of a popper hidden behind a mound of sagebrush somewhere between 50 and 100 yards out (hard to estimate from just the top edge of the popper), so I popped out into the wadi, quickly held about a half a head width high and let it go. Then I waited. Eventually, the "clang" came back to me. The instructor's comment was, "you weren't supposed to shoot that one yet". I think he meant I wasn't supposed to see it yet, but I still had fighter pilot eyes (20/10, uncorrected) back then, so maybe I was cheating.

A couple of things about that book, good and bad:

The editor notes at the front that he suggested Elmer tone it down or he would be subject to ridicule for telling tales but said Keith refused to do anything but "tell it like it happened" no matter how it looked. Obviously, the editor believed he was telling the truth, and his detractors don't.

Another is that the long-range shots he talks about in that book describe walking shots onto the target, and not making impossibly long first shot hits. This seems much more credible to me, given he would not have had the laser range finder the badminton shuttlecock-like trajectory of a revolver bullet at a long-range requires for first shots to make. But nothing he described in the first two-thirds of the book (where I am, now) sounds impossible to me. His technical explanations are a bit dubious at times, but he wasn't a physicist or an engineer, so I don't hold that against him.

The writing includes a lot of redundancy. I don't know if he was trying to fill space, or the editor got hurried, or what, but he repeats some things several times on the same page or consecutive pages. I find that a little hard on smooth reading. But he didn't claim to have great fluid prose. I can believe it came from an attempt by the editor to edit a stream of consciousness.

In the book, he has thus far stated that Ed McGivern is a better double-action shot than he, and is also better at aerial trick shooting, two-gun-two-handed shooting, and fanning. He says John Newman was better at slip gun shooting. So why did he credit some at some times and fail to credit others at other times? I don't know. There's stuff in the book that sounds boastful and there are some odds and ends that sound humbling and where he says what he did was foolish and not to be repeated, though there is less of that. So, I'm not sure what to make of the guy just based on his own writing. He knows some things and not others, but that pretty much describes us all. I can't condemn or deify him based solely on what I've read thus far (though I have read other things of his long ago; I just don't remember it in enough detail to count it at this point).
 
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Elk Whisperer (Super Moderator)
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Uncle Nick, you had to know him.

RJ
 

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Hat Coat Collar Suit Tie

Is the guy on the right … John Bianchi ?
We know Clint Eastwood has Elmer Keith on his other side.
 
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The Shadow (Moderator)
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The writing includes a lot of redundancy. I don't know if he was trying to fill space, or the editor got hurried, or what, but he repeats some things several times on the same page or consecutive pages.
That's carpet-bagger 101. 😉

Lots of people will believe the absolute dumbest things, as long as you repeat it a few times; and better yet, get others to repeat it too.
 
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