December 30, 2013
Gun Fight: Battle of the Wallhangers
By Phil Bourjaily
Today's gun fight is a battle of the wallhangers. It isn't about which gun you would rather shoot, but which one you'd like to have as a curio in your home.
The first is Jeff Clark's Compeer Arms double. It was actually one of many "hardware" guns made for various stores by Crescent Arms of Norwich, Connecticut. This gun was made for the Van Camp Hardware and Iron Company of Indianapolis.
Carl Huber's "miguelita" lock pistol is 100 years older than Clark's shotgun. It's a miquelet, a precursor of the true flintlock (I will leave it to one of you blackpowder experts out there to explain the difference) invented in the 16th century and remained popular, especially in the Mediterranean, until the 19th century.
Here they are:
Jeff Clark's Compeer Arms Double
My Compeer Arms 12 gauge has 28-inch barrels made of armory (fluid) steel, with individual sidelocks for each barrel. This particular one has the initials 'A.E.D.' and the date 'December 13 1915' written in pencil on the back of the buttstock. She's not a priceless piece by any means, but she has definitely earned a place on the rack over the mantel.
Carl Huber's Miquelet Pistol
My dad's house was built in 1885, and this pistol has been there as long as I remember [64 years]. I inherited it and it's been a conversation piece ever since. It has a crest from the Hapsburg Empire [I think] on the butt and a it has a miguelita Lock. The bore is approximately 72 caliber. It is steel with brass inlays. The date on the lock is 1810 and it does not shoot.
About the only thing this guns have in common is, they are guns, and they both have a bore diameter of around .72-.73 caliber. Other than that, there are more differences than similarities. Pick the one you'd like to have in your den. If you're feeling piratical, you might want the pistol. If your décor runs more to a bird hunting theme, you might like the shotgun. Vote, comment, and keep the gun pictures (and a short paragraph about your gun) coming to firstname.lastname@example.org.