While some of the nation’s oldest uniformed police departments trace their roots back to the mid-1800s, it wasn’t until the early 20th Century that the majority of American police sidearms moved from tunic pockets to openly-carried duty holsters. The earliest rigs were generally substandard in materials and design, and it wasn’t long before the search for the perfect police duty holster occupied the minds of uniformed lawmen from coast to coast.
When the double action, swing-out cylinder revolver began to take shape in the late 1800s, it seemed like the designers had already used up all their energy by the time they got to the back end. The grip frames on these guns were universally small, and the grips (or “stocks,” in S&W parlance) almost looked like they were afterthoughts.
Back when the revolver was King, wheelgun shooters and manufacturers paid attention to details that are sometimes overlooked today. A great example of this, is the host of trigger and hammer options that were available back when sixguns still filled most of the duty holsters and won most of the matches.
In the beginning, there was the percussion revolver, and it was good. But reloading those things took half a day, a picnic table, a pouch full of tools, and way too much patience, so we made sure to keep a good saber, knife, or hatchet nearby too. These also came in handy when we returned home to an angry wife, who was tired of cleaning the grease and blackpowder soot from our shirt and pants after a busy day on the battlefield. Continue reading “A Not-So-Serious Look at Reloading The Wheelgun”
Any RevolverGuy who grew up like I did, watching a steady diet of the 1970s police drama Adam-12, will certainly remember those Blue Knights, Malloy and Reed, each drawing a Combat Masterpiece revolver from a clamshell holster that sprung open like magic every time our heroes needed to draw down on some counterculture scumbag. The image of those great sixguns being drawn from the trick holsters was pure TV magic! Continue reading “Fighting Leather: The Clamshell Holster”
The sands of time fall slowly through the neck of the hourglass at the border, and sometimes they stop entirely. Despite the progress made in other parts of the nation by the early part of the 20th Century, the border Southwest of the 1920s to 1940s looked virtually unchanged from the days before the Mexican-American War, almost a hundred years earlier (1846-48). The endless revolutions, bandit wars, cross-border raids, smuggling, looting, livestock theft, lynchings, military invasions, murder, and “normal” border violence disproved any notion that the days of the “Wild West” were over. Continue reading “Fighting Leather: The Jordan Holster”