tv American Artifacts National Firearms Museum CSPAN August 11, 2021 8:12pm-9:05pm EDT
takeaway, you have a conversation about it. there's things for everybody's perspective -- it's not just about taking away your perspective that you like but there are different perspectives as well. >> patrick charles, joining us from new york, we thank you for being with us. >> thank you steve. now, american artifacts a visit to the national arms museum in fairfax virginia.
. when about the role farms of played in the course of american history. >> welcome to the nra national fire arms museum. i'm the museums director. we're going to go through the museum. take a look at the history of americans and their fire arms. we will start with the earliest precolonial days. go up to a current time. we will look at the role that firearms played in terms of the settlement, expansion of america, the role firearms played in the military and sporting and personal shooting roles. we'll see the guns of champions. the guns of presidents and heroes. we will see some great piece of art. fire arm engraving on a steel canvas. the national firearms museum is that and are a headquarters in fairfax, virginia. the museum has existed itself for nearly eight
years and we have been in this location for nearly 15. we are custodians of about 7000 firearms that have been donated to us relent to over the past 35 years. we have about 3000 on display here. and about 1000 more at the nra sporting arms museum in springfield, missouri. what i want people to come away from the museum with beyond the wow that's a lot of cool guns. it's an understanding of that unique relationship between americans and their firearms. the very integral role that farms have played in the history of america. >> we have phil schrier, senior curator here at the national firearms museum. and we are starting in the robert e. peterson gallery. mr. peterson was a magazine publisher and had one of the finest if not the finest firearms collection in the country. now what you see is the petersen gallery which has been called the
finest single room of firearms in the country. out of the 2000 and 100 firearms petersen left -- perhaps one of the finest that he donated was the ground royal when chester model, it's considered the finest when chester shotgun side by side ever manufactured. it was made by -- which owned windchester at the time. it's the finest 21 in existence. it commemorates the retriever, king, buck so it is just wonderful. >> in contrast to the
traditional engraving is a relatively new style of engraving. it's called -- engraving. it's only become widely known over the last 30, 40 years. when i say widely known i mean that there are the people that have mastered it. this kind of engraving is actually done by hand pressing literally hundreds of thousands or even millions of tiny individual dots into the steele. very in-depth angle and pressure. creating incredible scenes that you see on these shotguns for example. this gargoyle scene off of the reverse side of this little ronny shotgun. it's all done with hand pressed dots. any ugly can be considered to be the first american female superstar. she was an entertainer. she was discovered when frank butler, exhibition shooter was traveling town to
town. he challenged the best shooters at the town that he went to to a shooting contest. they brought out this 15-year-old girl and she shot side by side and actually beat him. he came back a year later. married her. and from then on they traveled. and annie became the star. here we have a beautiful shotgun. it has a inlaid plaque on the side of it. it's as to annie oakley. little missy from -- of course that's buffalo bill. from the date and location of this london, 1890, we can guess what's the date of the presentation might have been because at that time, and he was touring with the wild west show in europe, she had ran out of powder for her -- it was a different type and blew her shotgun. this may have been and i am i am sorry i love your shotgun gift.
>> mr. petersen's interest in addition to gorgeous funs are the gasoline gun. invented and designed by gatling back in 1861. he sought as his contribution to mankind. not only the war effort but to mankind. if he can come up with the super weapon that could kill so effectively and rapidly than people could just cease to want to go to war against anybody that was armed with such a gun. so the gatling was a series of barrels that were aligned, it allowed the use your operator to fire the gun just as fast as it could keep the handler. it was air cooled by the spinning by the mutliple barrels. mr. petersen had a question of ten of them that we had on display. right now we are certain that ten gatling
guns on public dsplay is the largest collection of gatling guns in the world on public display. as we will see very shortly a gatling literally wrote itself on the pages of history on july 1st, 1998. >> in the petersen gallery we have one of my favorite artifacts in the museum. this particular exhibit is by harington and richardson, it was made in 1886 for the philadelphia centennial exhibition. this was considered to be americas forced entry into the world's fair kind of event. countries were invited from all over the. world manufacturers were exhibiting the finest wears and it won a award at the fair to exhibit their line of rim fire, spin trade, revolvers. showing the fanciest finishes they could apply to it. this particular
piece not only has these wonderful little decorated revolvers and it. it is also the only surviving exhibit that is still intact from that 1876 philadelphia centennial exposition. we do have some fascinating oddities, curios, curiosities from the peterson collection, and they are in this glass tabletop display case. the centerpiece here is a sundial gun. now that served as a timepiece. you could load a blank powedered charge into the little can in, there and adjust the magnifying glass so the charge would, fire, you'd know it was time to go back to the house for lunch, or whatever it was time for. also i have here some of the early attempts at repeating fire alarms, there was a pepperbox revolver from the mid 1800s here. there is a four barrel flint lock that is arranged to where there are two barrels on top that can be fired, and the entire cluster
can be rotated to have two more shots. there is a harmonica style gun which was a early competitor for a revolver. instead of rotating cylinder there is a bar with successive charges. charges in it that can be slid from one round to the next as successive shots are needed. there are a number of firearms incorporating blades, including this beautiful gold plated double barreled pistol here with the ivory grips that came out of russian royalty. there is a long knife or short sword here with a flint lock pistol mounted on it. now, that was actually for war hunting. it was tradition in europe to hunt the boar with that type of gun. a couple of odd looking guns here. this one with a giant v sprain, this flint lock
over here with the circular device on it are not actually guns, they are gunpowder testers. these were made to test the power of black powder that was made in individual batches and you had to be sure that the power level of the powder was neither too much nor too little for its intended use. the museum as it opened in 1998 features 15 different galleries exhibiting over 3000 firearms. we laid the galleries out to kind of a chronological order, so that the average visitor can come through and see the whole development, the evolution of firearms and how it applied to american history in our own heritage. and in this case, we have actually one of the oldest guns on display in america. one of the oldest guns in the world, actually. it's called a hand cannon. it's just a gigantic iron tube with a hold that runs from the muzzle to the breach and then a
little perpendicular holt event where you can prime and fire the gun. this was excavated from a castle in canned burger money, and it was thought to have been left there from about years 13, 50 13 53. so it is not only one of the oldest guns in the world, it's probably one of the oldest guns in display on american it's one of the world's first guns which in effect, were actually cannons. it was from the large that we move down to the shoulder sized guns and jim has a spectacular piece that not only is smaller, but displays the we'll walk mechanism. >> well just as simple as the hand cannon was that filled it just showed you, a successor that followed soon after was complicated. when people asked me what is in the nra museum? there are always two guns that i discuss that illustrate the
span evidence that we have here. this is one of them. this is a will lock, very complicated firearm. they came over on the mayflower with pilgrim john alden. so, i explain what we haven't museum, i say we go from one of the very first fire arms on the northeastern american continent, and we go through to a revolver that was recovered from the ashes of the world trade center and everything in between. >> as we said earlier, we try to design and build a museum with display cases galleries that were evocative of the time period in which the arms were used. so here we're in our colonial house. something you might find and williamsburg attempting to tell the story of the early colonial period and the war of independence 1775 to 1781. we're looking right now at painting, which we actually
had to go to london england to find. it's called the shot heard around the world and it's one of the most beautifully rendered illustrative descriptions of the very first shots fired at lexington green on the morning of april 1975. along with the flint rifles and muskets that around the painting, this kind of tells the story of that very first encounter with the british that misty morning in april. but the question that a lot of people have, and i had as a little kid growing up, why was it that one misty morning in april, when 70 minute men answered the call of paul revere the night before saying that the british were coming and lined up on lev clinton green and captain looked at his men and said, don't fire unless fired upon. but if they mean to have a war, let it begin here. and at had 300 red coated british regulars under the charter major appeared from the road from cambridge. a shot was fired in the american revolution began. why was it that morning was any different from any of the others? the truth is, we don't
find in the history books and highschooler elementary school is that general gage, comanding his army or regiment had given them written orders that morning to go from cambridge to this concord via lexington, and remove all stands of muskets, ammunition, powder shot and artillery. they were after the guns that morning. that was the line in the sand, that was the point of no return. that's what started the war for independence. and that's what led america on its path that we still are traveling down today of freedom and liberty and how firearms play that role, not only acquiring our liberty, but maintaining it ever since. when we're talking about purely american firearms, in american innovations we take a lot of
different things that can be brought to the table for conversation but one of the earliest is what we now call the american long riffle. it sometimes called the pennsylvania or kentucky, keep a truly it's an american long rifle because immigrants from europe brought from all corners of europe, brought with them rifle making skills and began to set up shops in literally every colony and then eventually every state in union that de facto guns. you can look at the long rifles we have, and just by looking at the curvature of the stock, tell exactly what county and what state these long rifles were from. there are truly works of american folk art and are very valuable, just in their own right today. perhaps one of the most historically significant guns in the collection, in my opinion, is this wonderful little air rifle right here. now, originally this gun was designed by an italian from the austrian army to be used against napoleon. how one ended
up in the hands of the core of discovery, or as we call it the lewis and clark expedition from 1803 to 1806, is a mystery, but we do know they had a gun very similar to this one right here. the reason why we place so much historical value on this particular firearm, is because in the journals of the lewis and clark expedition, lewis writes about this gun not once, but 39 separate entries. and each entry is pretty much similar to the one before. he says, something along the lines of today we met the -- at the headwaters in missouri river. i had the men parade before they were in their classic uniforms, order the uncasing and unfurling of the regimental and national colors. we walked in under fife and drum, i introduced myself and the chief of the tribe, presented the gifts of coins by the likes of president jefferson back in
washington. and two hand claps in friendship. and then i demonstrated the air rifle, to which they all found to be and wonderment and amazement. and there's the key. every single time he meets a new tribe of indians, he demonstrates the air rifle. now, you also have to read into this and never during the trip to he ever allow the indians to actually gain access to the keel bone, or know how much he had in the way of supplies and provisions. so the indians, when they saw this literally almost a repeating rifle, fired great accuracy and tremendous effect and power, almost unending the fire. they were amazed. nobody had ever seen anything like that. and so, they were very cordial, not knowing whether there was just one of these guns or 39 of them. so it, was kind of the idea of peace through the perception of superior firepower, and it's what's led the 39 members of the core discovery from st.
louis to the cascades and the pacific ocean in those three years and back without having been overwhelmed, attacked or and wiped out by any of the bands of the native americans in the western plains. this riffle was able to present such intimidation that they were happy to be hosts and to move them on to the next drive to the west. the kentucky rifle >> was the first truly american rifle. the american long rifle, and it was perfect for the woods of the eastern u.s.. but as the american west changed from kentucky tennessee and ohio to the great plains and the rocky mountains, a different type of rifle was needed and that's where we see the introduction of the plains rifle. now this time st. louis was the gateway to the west, and this is where a lot of the
trappers and pilgrims and settlers would buy their supplies to make the trip. and this was where the brothers had a rifle shot. they created the planes rifle which was a shorter barrel it was a larger caliber than the american long rifle to deal with the larger game of the american west, the vice, and the outlook, the big bears, it was a handier length to be carried easier on horseback. this represents the hawkins shop, this gentleman is rifling the barrel, cutting grooves in it to put a spin on the lead bullet that will increase its range and accuracy. he'll walk back and forth 20 miles to riffle a single barrel. >> in the early 1800s, one of
the main focuses of effort and firearms design was to try to developed an effective repeating rifle. and sam colt is the guy who really came up with the first widely adopted repeating firearm, but it was not successful at first try. it was a matter of try, try again. he created a revolver with a revolving cylinder, holding five rounds to be advanced as fast as you can caulk the hammer back and pull the trigger. he was looking for financial backing for his new invention, demonstrating it to his father to try and get the financial backing, but it's said that revolver blew up while he was demonstrating it, which discouraged the financial backing. now, it said that colt went back to doing a number of things to harness a living. there's a report that he would tour county fairs, dressed in a turban billing himself as doctor colt of kolkata, demonstrating nitrous oxide to the crowds. but eventually, he got back into the manufacturing business, in patterson, new jersey, and came up with these water not called cold and patterson revolvers. they look
unusual to us, they have a folding trigger, it lobbed down with a hammer when it's cocked, and they also were a miserable failure. now, he had gone out of business, gave up on these but a man in the u.s. mounted rifles who has served as a texas ranger, had to use these revolvers in texas and felt they were exactly with the military needed for the wars and skirmishes with the texas mexico border. came back to colt and asked him to make 1000 of these for her sale to the government, that they needed to be bigger, heavier and more powerful. his name was sam walker and this colt became known as the walker model. as you can see, it was a big, heavy revolver pushing almost five pounds in weight and it took a very heavy powder charge. too powerful for the metallurgy at the time, and out of the 1100 of these that are made, only 10% of these survive that were made. and a number of these were found with cracked or broken cylinders. he's the
shortened the cylinder came out with this model, and from that point on, the cold firearm might be factoring factory was off to a road to success and established itself as an iconic american firearms manufacturer. >> this crazy little contraption was designed by thomas ranchers, and installed in a pranks field army in massachusetts in the early 1800s. and this is one of the first machines that started the american industrial movement, the industrial revolution. it's a stock making machine and it works just like you would copy a key at a hardware store today. this is the beginning of interchangeable and mass produced parts. and we see this in the gun industry, we don't see this in any of the other industries, burgeoning in america especially in new england during the 1800s. but it really manifest itself with this rifle right here, a hauls
breach loader, made right here in virginia, what is known unfortunately as west virginia up at the ferry. but the halls becomes not only one of the first military adopted breach loading firearms of the united states, but it also is one of the first guns to begin the use of manufacturing processes that see the development of interchange ability and parts and, yes eventually assembly line production. so that when colt got that letter jim was talking about from sam walker, the texas ranger, asking for 1000 guns, which he didn't even have a factory to make them in, he turn to the one guy in new england that could do something about it, eli whitney jr.. the son of the gentleman who invented the cotton gin. whitney had a factory north of new haven connecticut, and he was able to turn out all 1000
colt-walker pistols for the u.s. government in a six month period of time because he used every single part on this and are -- interchangeability. this mass production. not only for the book, but to meddle as well. and that is really where the industrial revolution begins in this country and spreads to the rest of the world. samuel colt takes nine single action 1851 model navy revolvers to the crystal palace in london in 1851, and displays them before prince albert. the rest of the attending audience was absolutely aghast and shocked to really see nine guns being torn apart and re-assembled without any care that the previously came from. everything up to this time had been hand fitted and filed. now you can have something roll off a machine, make dozens of them per hour and have quite a stop at the end of the day. in the past, these things would take weeks if not months to manufacture from scratch. so in
december of 1940, during a fireside chat, franklin roosevelt tells the nation that the dark so clause that have darkened over europe, are going to soon darken our shores. >> all of our efforts are not enough. we must have more ships, more guns, more planes, more of everything! we must be the great arsenal of democracy. for us, this is an emergency has serious as war itself. >> now america must become the arsenal of democracy, he says. a year before pearl harbor. not only do we make 5 million and one grants, 5 million and one carbines, four and a half
million colt 19 11 and one revolvers, and that's just a firearms. we make enough to arm and equip the 16 million men and women we put in uniform and millions of our allies to defeat fascism in europe in 1945 and in the south pacific as well. so, it was this industrial revolution that gives us the capability to, almost a century later, maintain the freedom that americans have so hard-fought for in the intervening years. >> now, on american artifacts, the second part of our visit to the nra's national firearms museum in fairfax virginia. we joined museum director james topeka in the civil war gallery. >> we're entering the civil war galleries of the national firearms museum, on my left represents the union and on my right the confederacy. this first exhibit case we've seen numerous examples of the carving's of the union was using, this was a time of rapid advance in firearms design
going from the traditional muzzle loaders to the breach loaders, eventually to repeating rifles. one of the most interesting and historic firearms of this case has this little carbine. it's slippery charts, and it's one of the actual sharps carbines that john brown used in his raid on harpers ferry, one of the events that initiated the civil war. this exhibit illustrates the manufacturing might of the north, that can turn out thousands and hundreds of thousands of well fitted, well manufactured firearms that were ready to go to work. in the back, you see a barrel riffling - from the civil war, clear up to the time of world war ii. and this manufacturing capability was certainly one of the north's strengths in the civil war. >> the south on the other hand,
did not have the industrial might that the north had. as we talked earlier, the new england and connecticut river valley was the home of dozens of gun manufacturers. in fact, the 1861 model springfield, so many were needed by the union army at one time, that 33 different manufacturers were turning out the identical same rifle for purchase by the u.s. army. the confederates were left up on their own to procure and manufacture firearms. they had a few places, herper's ferry, virginia where they actually had possession of it. richmond had a factory down at trafficker, along the james river, and a few down in north carolina and georgia and texas. but they could hardly supply the needs of the confederacy. they got most of their guns either from captured during battle against the yankees, or imported from overseas. in fact, the finest infantry rifle in
the world in 1861, was the british infield. and the confederates bought a quarter of 1 million of them. they were by far the most favored long arm of the civil war. but at the end of the day, when the war came to a conclusion in april of 1865, general lee wrote general orders saying that after four years of arduous service, unsurpassed by courage and fortitude, the army northern virginia has been compelled to yield -- the work could have gone on for literally years and lee asked to take to the mountains and conducted guerrilla campaign. but it came to its conclusion after the rotors orders, and after the many victory parades and testimonials, a number of union officers got together and tried evaluate what exactly had happened during those four
years, because once the numbers were being crunched, which took a long time to actually evaluate, there were over 650,000 casualties in the american civil war. when you look at outright dead on the battlefield at the end of a battle, there were 75,000 dead confederates and 150,000 dead union soldiers. that's gunshot and artillery bayonnet wounds on the battlefield dead, two to one, yankees over confederates in that regard. and by 1871, a lot of officers were beginning to realize that it was a year-round thing, winning that war. the confederates had been out resourced on every single level, except for accuracy and marksmanship. and there they held a two to one advantage over the north. and so, they felt as if national emergency
ever came about again, there was a need to increase the marksmanship skills of the standing army. not only would that play dividends on the battlefield with marksmanship, but also cuts down on the amount of training and time you need to indoctrinate soldiers into marksmanship during basing. so if we had a nation of riflemen, we would stand a better chance to survive the next national emergency. and many years before samuel clemons issued his wonderful novel tom sawyer, i would talk encourages his friend to find the fun and whitewashing his friends, the gentlemen that form the national rifle association of america in 1871 felt that we could increase marksmanship by making a competition out of it. so they organized the association to promote marksmanship within the branches of the armed services, and also within civilians shooting clubs throughout this country. if we make this competition, we make
marksmanship a skill, it'll be something that a lot of people want to participate in. and by 1876, shooting competitions where the largest spectator sport in the history of the country to that time. that was the birth of the national rifle association and to this day, remains one of our primary aims and objectives to promote marksmanship throughout not only the arm forces, but the civilian populace as well. >> moving to the gallery showing the firearms of the american west, on the far side of this cabinet, we have the guns that are traditionally thought of as the guns who won the west. the winchester lever action rifles, and the colt
single action army revolvers along with other colts. but the colts and winchester's weren't the only guns in the american west. on the side of the case, we see the other manufacturers that played a significant role. the winnie kennedy and marlin rifles, the women can handguns, certainly the riminton single shot rifle, rolling block played a major role with the buffalo hunters along with the sharps. but also the smith and weston revolvers. it's not often recognized that in the period from 1870 to the turn of century, smith and weston was actually turning out even more revolvers than colts at the time. both were very popular, but there were also numerous other examples of guns used in the west. there are more wind hell bird and other manufacturers were well represented. >> our newest exhibit at the national firearms museum is a set of artifacts that we are very proud to have on loan from saginaw hill, theodore
roosevelt homeplace, it's currently undergoing a complete restoration. and while they're working on that, they land has the firearms and numerous other artifacts from roosevelt's home. we will tell you a little bit more about what we got from the national park service -- >> back when the museum was being design in the mid 90s, we wanted to take a corner of the museum and focus on the life of theodore roosevelt. our 26th chief executive was an avid outdoorsman conservationist and we felt as a life members an area as well, we ought to put a little tribute to him together here. so we decided to replicate the library from sagamore hill almost on one to one scale. now, his daughter said that the library was the heartbeat of the house. it is where the roosevelt family with theodore had barrister gathered every evening to retweeted or and they tell each cases of books against the other stories of the day. so, where theodore had barrister cases of books against the wall, we traded those in forgotten cases. his real gun cases where up in the fourth floor study in the house, but it was this room, the library, i was literally the oval office of the white house
from the 1902 to 1908. and out of the 10,000 out of facts at sagamore hill, were very fortunate to have about 115 original priceless treasures from theodore's home on display here. so this is the working guest of the president from 1902 to 1908. tracking service african safari from 19 oh 19 1910 are seen with one of the seven lions that he shot. the rhinoceros horns, this safari was interest for trophies to get decorators house, i was actually done under the auspices of the smithsonian institution museum of natural history. my favorite piece is of course the gabbling gun that you see here. the model 1895 catlin gun in 1840. this is one of four guns that actually
accompanied roosevelt in the rough riders to cuba in july of 1898. and one of the most important guns in american military history is seen right behind it, lost for over 114 years, the very first machine gun ever used by the united states army in military combat. it is an 1895 browning automatic rifle, it's called the potato digger. it is in seven millimeter -- it was privately purchased, one of two given by the wealthier families of the rough riders to the regiment intake into cuba. in this case, the specific gun was donated by luis cain, the elder sisters of woodbury cain, one of roosevelt rough riders. we just happen to be the granddaughters of john jacob and so the cain sisters gave their older brother one of the first the -- first machine gun ever used in military combat by the united states army. and
this cabinet, very fortunate have on display, colonel theodore roosevelt proxy brothers tunic, his tencent hat and his 1872 cavalry saber. you know, it's interesting to note that when the united states president leaves the white house, he's referred to as mr. president for the rest of his life. accept, there are two exceptions. generalize -- requested to be called generalize and how rental is death. and then when one of the porters was gathering the roosevelt's baggage in may of 1909 as he was leaving to head back to sagamore hill, he said, we sure will miss you mister president. and theodore stopped him right there. and where everybody can here and remember, he said, no, howard taft is your president. i am now just
colonel roosevelt. and that's the way he stayed for the rest of his life. preferring to be remembered as the colonel commanding the first united states regiment of volunteers, the rough riders. so, always colonel roosevelt at the end. and it's just a wonderful opportunity for the national firearms museum to be the temporary custodians of these national treasures, literally from our nation's attic in fact, a number of firearms and that his six children enjoyed using. his elder son, theodore jr., who earned the medal of honor utah beach. second serve kermit, major in the british expedition forces during world war i and the united states in world war i and world war ii. tied at fort richardson in 1943. so number three, archie roosevelt, was given 100% disability from wounds received twice. the only soldier in american history to have earned 100 percent disability in both world war i and world war ii and of course,, the youngest and the first to past, young lieutenant quentin roosevelt, a fighter pilot shot down by the germans over friends in 1918. the firearms that they used both in the
service for recreation around sagamore hill as well as are the facts that we can reach back, touch, that is one of my favorite stories. the wind chester model 34, 30 30, if you look closely there there is a muzzle at the end of that. roosevelt's third son, and the father liked to take this got in particular out hunting out in the state early in the morning, dispatching arms with it as it credit little noise and tended not to wake up the neighbors who had names like tiffany vanderbilt. if you can imagine someone today strolling along their yard with rabbits and the like. quite a difference that 100 years could make.
>> we it's better to think of a better transitional figure in the 19th century till the 20th century. we move into the gardens with a focus on the evolution of the bold action rifle. it began in the later part of the 19th century with four prototypes that the browser fathers used to develop their action rifle. we also pay homage here to a number of other famous farm designers. certainly, the for most of them, being the greatest fire arm fighter that had ever lived and then go into a more modern designer, william ruger, founder of the ruger company.
-- this is a s.i. 99 rifle that he converted into a semi automatic rifle. when he went seeking a job at springfield armory, instead of resume, he brought this rifle and was hired on the spot. >> one of the great leaps forward in firearms evolution and sign begins to take place in the 18 eighties when we move from and transition from black patrick bespoke was powder. up to this time most of your guns have been muzzle loading. the powder down the muzzle and with the black powder. lead fouling in the barrel and especially with a rifle, after so many shots, that would tend to construct the ap which you have in the barrel, and hard to ram around the muzzle of the breach and breach loaders began to be developed in the 18 twenties. with breach loading arms,
smoke-less powder allows you to fire more rapidly because the inner workings of the gun aren't gummed up with the fouling residue of black powder. by 1840, haram maxime developed a machine gun that was one poll of the lever to cycle and work. fire, eject, and reload and fire that and abject it as long as you held the trigger in the rate of the fire on these guns from 400 moving to the calories that show the farms of the competition sports, starting with the shotguns that are used in traps, sporting plays, moving to the firearms of the olympic competitions, including a number of guns that have won gold medals for the u.s. and the olympics, and the gold medals that were won with them. we are on the fun aspects of the national firearms museum, begin with the 19 fifties girls, room it isn't what my room
looked, like but it's what i wanted it to look. like i had the cowboy bits, i desperately wanted the night light. my mother wouldn't let me have one because she was sure it would set the house on fire. we have an original coney island >> >> moving to galleries a truly farms of the competition shooting sports. starting with the shot guns that are used in trap, skate, sporting clays, moving to the firearms of the olympic competitions, including a number of guns that have won gold medals for the u.s. and the olympics, and the gold medals that were won with them.
we are on the fun aspects of the national firearms museum, begin with the 19 fifties girls, room it isn't what my room looked, like but it's what i wanted it to look. like i had the cowboy bits, i desperately wanted the night light. my mother wouldn't let me have one because she was sure it would set the house on fire. we have an original coney island shooting gallery. this was established in the very early 20th century. it's gone from steam power to electric power. this is one of the most popular galleries in the national firearms museum. here we have over 120 guns from 80 years of hollywood films beginning with the very first revolver that
was used by john wayne in his first credited role, and going through modern oscar winners such as the author and old country for men. -- john wayne and state coats, dirty harry's 45 magnum revolver. when you talk about famous movie lines, famous guns in movies, go ahead, make my day, that 44 magnum is probably the most widely recognized firearm on earth. it was made extremely popular by a series of films, the guns you see in front of it are just dummies. these are the guns you see falling down the stairs,
thrown into the river. great sound editing helps to make that sound like it's actually metal and wood hitting the cobblestone. all of these guns are real firestone manufactured by waltner, colt, smith and wesson, these are great pieces. bruce willis and mel gibson both used the same am 9-99 in die hard, and in lethal weapon. we have one of the prop guns out of rubber from star wars. tom selleck's a very generous benefactor to the museum. and not only has he went from his personal collection, but guns that he used in a number of his films like quigley down under, cross fire trail, we have three of the guns that he had meet as commemorative's from his magnum
p. i. series. again, a gatling gun, this particular one was used in the 1949 carrie grant, sam jaffe film, of course next to that is a original, that was used by richard, in the movie -- with john wayne in 1960. one of my favorite westerns of all-time is the wild bunch, a wonderful western starring robert ryan, william holden, and the cast of characters goes on and on, both truly one of the real stars is this browning water cooled belt fed machine gun. tech and paul went through a quarter of 1 million 30-06 planks using this gun in the final scene of the great should out of the mexican general headquarters south of the border, and if you look at the ammo box, here you can still see some of the fake blood
splatter from warren oats and ben johnson on the mo box during that final scene. to kind of close things out with the hollywood, guns for someone that grew up in a house that wasn't fire arms-friendly as a, kid there were no guns in the, house it was through the movies and televisions that i gained my love and admiration of firearms, with the meant to american history, especially all the military and the cowboy films that i was so enamored. with this helps to kind of established connection with those stars of the silver screen that we grew up admiring. most of us before we ever had an opportunity to handle or fire a real firearm of our own. in the hunting galleries of the national of our own. in the hunting
galleries of the national firearms museum, we have our largest rifle and our largest shotgun. the rifle on the exhibit is up bore rifle that is a rifle that throws a quarter pound of lead with each shot. this particular rifle was used by stanley and expedition to find doctor livingston in africa. across from, it we have the shotgun exhibit, and on the bottom of this display case is a massive shotgun. now this was a punt gun. this is not fired from the shoulder. this was braced in a small boat, and it would be loaded with up to a pound of lead shot and it was used for market hunting. it would be used to harvest up to 100 water fell with a single shot. as america became more aware of the needs of conservation, this type of firearm was banned, but for a number of years in the 1800s this type of gun would provide
water fell for sale to markets, and to restaurants. one of the last galleries in the national firearms museum is dedicate to law enforcement. and it's here that we have the other gun that i believe brackets our firearms stories here at the museum. this is far from one of the most impressive guns to initially look at. it's very beaten. up the finish is burnt off of it. the seal is twisted. but this was a gun that was carried into the world trade center by new york police officer, walter weaver, on september 11th, 2001. officer weaver never came out, but the revolver was recovered from the ashes. officer weaver had been a very strong supporter of the nra, an enthusiastic member. his family wanted us to have it and we display it here with great pride in a place of honor as a reminder of those who put their lives on the line to serve and protect. >> this is the story of americans and their guns, and
we want you to leave here with a newfound appreciation and understanding of the rule that far arms have played throughout our nation's history. it was firearms that led the industrial growth of this country. it was our ability to create farms and a mass production type scale that allowed us to manufacture anything at all in world war ii, and to help stop fascism in its tracks. farms played a huge role in the development of the nation. i was just teaching men and women, children how to shoot and defend themselves, americans and their guns is a significant and some middle part of our american history.
next on history bookshelf. author adam winkler talks put his book gunfight. the battle over the right to bear arms in america. he examines gun laws in u.s. history getting back to the second amendment. this was recorded in 2011 at the texas book festival in austin. it's about 40 minutes. good afternoon everyone and welcome to the texas book festival. i'm