Request[AMA Request] Sister Margaret Ann, the chainsaw-wielding nun helping clean up after Hurricane Irma
Sep 13th 2017 by tomkel5 • 32 Questions • 104 Points
Hi Reddit, we are the Cody Firearms Museum here to answer questions. We are a museum in NW Wyoming near Yellowstone and we have over 7,000 firearms and 28,000+ related artifacts in our collection. We interpret the history of firearms from the 1400s to the present. Our oldest firearm dates to at least the fifteenth century and our newest was made last year. We are the repository for the Winchester Factory Collection & Corporate Archive, the Eli Whitney Jr. Collection, the Benjamin Butler Collection, and the Edwin Pugsley Collection. We also have the archives of Schuyler, Hartley, & Graham, Marlin, L.C. Smith, and Ithaca.
We are part of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, which includes the Whitney Western Art Museum, Plains Indian Museum, Buffalo Bill Museum, Draper Natural History Museum, and McCracken Research Library. The Center is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year and we currently planning a major renovation of our museum. If you want to search our collection go here for objects, or here for archival material, or just check our post history. Our Curator, Ashley, and Assistant Curator, Danny, are here to answer your questions for the next couple of hours. Ask us about firearms history, museums, or whatever.
Update: Thanks for the questions everyone! We had fun. We have to run to meetings, but if you have more ask and we'll check back.
What is the fuddiest thing you have heard from museum patrons?
We heard a great story yesterday about how John Browning invented semi-autos by putting a spoon on the end of a barrel. We also heard a good story about how someone's Model 1886 Winchester took part in the Battle of Little Bighorn, which happened in 1876.
I got a chance to meet some of your team at the Ohio Gun Collector's Association show last weekend; they were showing me their process for looking up Winchester serials and deciphering all of the old factory records and ledgers you guys have access to. Super dense, flowery old-timey handwriting, notes sideways in the margins, strike-throughs and corrections...enough to drive somebody mad.
So aside from being forced to get really familiar with Winchester factory foremen shorthand and 130 year old abbreviations and slang, what's the most surprising/interesting thing you've unearthed about how the business was run and guns were made back in that time?
How most of John Browning's designs were modified before they made it to production. It was a combination of design genius and production know how.
Why not an actual shooting range with some less rare guns?
We have talked about starting a collection of non-accessioned firearms for the purpose of shooting, but it would be difficult, we don't really have the staff or facility to make that happen. The range in town does a really good job already giving people a chance to shoot reproductions.
Why did you find it important to mention that you are millenials in your title post?
Because it seems to not be what people expect when they hear "Arms Curator" - Danny
Because it's better than saying I'm a girl - Ashley
Haha that's like saying "You said most of your collections were Hondas. I instantly thought of my Toyota."
We've failed you, if it was Firefly or X-Files we might have been there.
Would your collection happen to include any shotguns from Japan in the late 1800s [Meiji Restoration-era]?
I know pistols and rifles were most common in that time period for Japan, but I haven't found much about shotguns.
Unfortunately not, our collection is weaker when it comes to Asian firearms.