Robert E. Gardner
Copyright 198$ THE F. J. HEER PRINTING CO.
THE PRESENT HANDBOOK attempts to bring together the biographical data pertaining to the arms craftsmen of America and to bracket such data with a resume of their contributions to the nation's armament.
The advantages of separate lists of the makers of hand guns; of shoulder arms, edged weapons and artillery, were considered. Many manufacturers, however, produced a wide variety of arms. The N. P. Ames Company, for example, produced swords, bayonets, carbines, pistols, revolvers and cannon and a separate listing of this firm for each type of arm would necessitate considerable repetition. The desire for brevity has caused the single listing of all makers, regardless of the character of their products, under an alphabetical arrangement.
Only the biographer knows the many pitfalls which beset his search after knowledge. The writer has found the names of early craftsmen published in directories years after their demise. He has noted others who were taken over by more prosperous competitors during the depression of 1873 only to be revived in their own right and continue for years thereafter. All this adds confusion to a difficult task and the biographer needs proceed with extreme caution.
The kind assistance of friendly authorities has given a refreshing touch to an otherwise drab task and it is fitting that such assistance be duly acknowledged.
Captain Allen P. Westcott, the well-known Chicago authority, has given most generously of his time and valuable notes. Dr. Joseph R. Mayer. Curator of Military History, Rochester Museum of Arts and Sciences, has made available a portion of the results of his fine research.
Mr. Walter E. Height shoe. Curator of Arms, Ohio State Museum, has been an unfailing sourcc of information of the highest order. Mr. Charles D. Cook has authorized the use of extracts from his occasional papers in the Magazine Antiques.
The writer also acknowledges his indebtedness to Mr. Jack W. Rocke, of the Far West Hobby Shop; Mr. Stephen Van Rensselaer, the well-known dealer of Williamsburg, Virginia; Mr. Gustave S. Kidde, of Wilmington, Delaware, and Mr. Herschel C. Logan, of Salina, Kansas. Columbus, Ohio. March 20, 1938.
Was this article helpful?