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CHRISTMAS STUFF — 26 Comments

  1. Christmas of 1958 found us back in the U.S. after my Army father’s tour in Germany. We were in Barstow, California, before the left coast went really crazy. There was a Marlin No. 1, with MicroGroove rifling under the tree, and a brick of .22LR. My first firearm, it replaced a Red Ryder lever action.

    My father had introduced me to shooting with the BB gun, and I got to where I could “make diamonds.” (Shoot a BB down the neck of a Coke bottle and hit the center of the base, which popped out a glass “diamond.”) But there were more lessons before I mastered the Marlin, a single-shot bolt-action.

    I still have it, though it’s small for me to shoot. But when I have a small student it’s my go-to teaching starter rifle.

    Merry Christmas, and may all your students be bright.

  2. Two Christmas gun memories, and they are similar to others’. First was a Daisy Red Ryder when I was about 6 or 7, and another was a Mossberg single shot .410 when I was about 12 or 13 that ‘graduated’ me from being just a ‘bird dog’ for my mom and dad when they were dove hunting to being a hunter myself. Oh yeah, one more – I was always antsy on Christmas Eve, so to settle me down, dad would often take me out to the Trinity River in Dallas to plink a while with an old Stevens .22 that had been my mom’s. Still have the gun and have a photo of her as a teenager shooting it off a bridge in North Dallas around 1930.
    Merry Christmas to all, and have a safe and happy holiday!

  3. I unfortunately have no specific Christmas story to share, which is amazing considering my hunting and firearms history. I would like to pass along wishes for you, Mas, and all those that read herein. I’m hoping to sign up for MAG 80 at some point as a present to myself. Best wishes for a safe and prosperous new year to all!

  4. Being able to gift a firearm for Christmas is always a cherished memory. Wish I could do it all the time.

    Merry Christmas to you and yours Mas. Hope this finds you well.

    All the best,

    Mike Palermo
    N.H.

  5. No memorable Christmas gun stories, but I will take the opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a peaceful & prosperous 2018.

  6. 50 years ago, I’d just turned 13 and my Christmas present from my grandparents was a used, 20 gauge, single shot, shotgun made by Iver Johnson. I’m not much of a hunter but I shot a few clay birds an two rattlesnakes with the shotgun. I still have it. It only comes out of the safe to be wiped down and oiled, now, but I’m sure it will still work. I have to say it was a very special gift because I remember getting it and I still have it. I can’t say that about any other gifts from my childhood.

  7. Christmas 1964. I was just 12. I got my first real gun. A single shot Ithaca .22 lever rifle. My best friend’s parents were very much against firearms, especially kids with firearm, so Rick was destined to wait until he was older to own a firearm. A few years later, Rick at 17, his soon to be wife of 15, his and her immediate families, and me the “best (hardly) a man” were standing in front of a JP (Justice of the Peace). For a wedding present I gave Rick my .22 rifle. Years passed and we drifted apart, both wrapped up in our own lives. Fast forward to the summer of 2014, my mother passed away and Rick came to the funeral where we re-connected. He was still into shooting and since I have a nice firing range on my property I invited him out to shoot with a group of friends unofficially known as the Third Road Gun and Grub Club. This shoot landed on my 62nd birthday, a week after we buried mom. When Rick showed up, he took out a little Ithaca .22 rifle and gave it to me for my birthday. It was the same rifle I had given him for a wedding present. The same rifle my folks had given me for Christmas 50 years earlier. New friends are good, but old friends are the best. That .22 still shoots great and will be lovingly handed down to one of my grandkids. (When I’m done with it.)

  8. Christmas present ? Daisy 1894 “spitting image” lever action BB gun. I think I was 11 years old. It was in brass trim.

  9. Okay, my first firearm was a Model 1873 Colt SA, that I traded some sort of edged weapon for. As received, this .45 LC SA’s barrel had no visible rifling, was just a rusted out sewer pipe of a barrel.

    I soon acquired a chromed .44-40 Barrel, and Cylinder, and changed them out, however, Afterwards, the .44-40 Bullets shaved lead, as I didn’t have the proper tools to install the barrel, and “Twitched” the frame slightly in the process?

    Later, after I drove an old, Oil Burning, 1941 Ford 2DR, from Texas, to Florida, and was staying with my divorced Father, We suffered a “Home Invasion” of his Coral Gables house, during which the .44-40 was stolen, and the Insurance paid for a Brand New Model 1911 Colt, .38 Super, which was a far better weapon, and much more powerful Cartridge as well!

    Paul

  10. Right around 1952, my Grandfather (don’t ever try to call him anything else) bought me a Daisy model 25 “pump” BB gun. It had a 50 bb, spring loaded magazine that I was not allowed to use (it was California after all). I had to pretend it was a muzzle loader…one bb through the muzzle at a time. It was fine for shooting those pesky sparrows that pecked away at Grandfather’s fruit and nut trees but worthless for any targets below parallel to the ground as the bbs would roll out of the barrel. It took all I had to cock the silly thing with both hands on the fore-grip and the butt on the ground. Grandfather had to solder on an extension to the front sight to bring POI to POA. I so wish I still had it to pass down but it disappeared while I was overseas on my government paid vacation to exotic South East Asia. I miss it nearly as much as the man I could never call “Gramps”.

  11. It was 1964, and I’d gotten up early Christmas morning to find a marvelous rifle under the tree. It was all a 6 year old could ever hope for. It was a Daisy in the style of a Winchester 1894 and it shot cork balls. While my Dad was explaining that although a toy, it would have the same rules applied as any of the other firearms in the house. Don’t know if the 4 rules Jeff Cooper promoted were in common parlance back then, but they were sure the law in our family. At least between my Dad and I. While we were having the safety talk, my Mother picked up the rifle, loaded a round and drew a fine bead on the Christmas tree across the room. There was a loud pop. A big red ornament exploded with an enormous shower of tiny glass fragments. I thought for sure my mother could shoot like Annie Oakley. Best Christmas present ever! The gun was pretty cool too.

  12. Christmas day; me, curly headed 5 yr girl child. Older brother received a Red Rider Daisy BB gun; me, a porcelain face doll with baby bed. i raised so much hell that my Dad was first in line at the hardware store the next morning to buy my BB gun.
    We used the doll for a target.

  13. Merry Christmas uncle Mas, I’ve been reading your stuff since I was 21 (no I won’t say how long ago that was lol) and am always learning from you. Hopefully I’ll meet you in person for one of your courses down the road, but in the meantime, know that your lessons have been really instrumental in shaping me as to the shooter and CCW carrier I am today. It’s kept me and my spouse in one piece, trust me. Beers to you and the Evil Princess!

  14. Merry Christmas and a very happy and healthy New year to you and your family!
    My 1st Christmas related firearm was a Colt’s “coltalloy” liteweight Commander – still have it and carry it 50+ yrs later.

  15. I always loved checking my stocking on Christmas morning to get the tube of BB’s and later the box of .22’s and all that that included. We had a ‘family’ .22 rifle, a Browning autoloader, that had been my maternal grandfathers. Well, one Christmas there was a box of 12 gauge shells in my stocking. My brothers and I took the house apart (as our Parents tried to sleep) looking for the shotgun. We were able to locate it only after we woke our parents as they had wisely hid it in their bedroom closet. The neighbors, who the closest were about ¼ mile away, probably didn’t appreciate the blast of a shotgun at 5 am. but there my brothers and I were, outside in our pajamas, shooting into the bank beside the house. THe shotgun was a Monkey Wards 12 gauge pump, with a integral adjustable screw choke. That was one ugly gun, but it was a lot of fun to shoot and living on 40 acres, there was plenty of opportunity to enjoy it, even if the cost of a box of shells seemed like a king ransom to a 12 year old boy.

  16. Merry Christmas Massad and Family,
    When you were a kid working in your Dad’s
    Jewelry Business, Did you ever have any close calls ?

  17. If I remember correctly, it was my sixth Christmas, and I had already expressed my wish for a set of “Fanner Fifties” cap guns from Santa. About a week before Christmas Day, I began having remorse, now wanting a “BB” gun. Suspecting that Mom and Dad were really Santa, I shared my change of heart with them. They told me it was a little late to expect Santa to change the order, maybe next year. I went to bed heartbroken that Christmas Eve night. Got up early that morning, still dark, found my way to the living room chair where Santa always laid out my presents (usually new socks, underwear and one special gift). Too dark to see, I searched by touch for the cap pistols, only to find a long metallic object laying across the arms of the chair. Running my hand to the end of the object and feeling the small hole located there, well I can’t describe the joy of that Christmas morning.

    A real gun? Try telling a 6 year old that it’s not.

    • I got a Fanner Fifty for maybe my ninth Christmas. First gun I ever had that shot a bullet, even though plastic. I felt like the Lone Ranger that morning, and probably still do.

  18. I too started hunting at about 12 years old in the cornfields of southeastern Nebraska with my Grandfather. My first gun was a Remington .22 bolt action rifle and the second one was a Winchester model 12, 12 Gauge 3 inch Magnum Shotgun, a heavy Duck gun. Learned about gun safety the right way. Am passing all those early guns to my children and grandchildren. Cannot shoot shotguns anymore due to having a pacemaker in my left shoulder area but still shoot handguns very well. Merry Christmas and New Year to all on this blog and especially you Mas and your significant other.

  19. At age 16 I was a Gandy dancer on a section camp for the Western Pacific railroad in Nevada, after a few pay checks I hitched hiked to Salt Lake City, bought me a ww1 45acp S&W revolver and a box of ammo. Back to camp I set up a can for a target, tried to load my sixgun, shells way to big to go in chambers. Back to S.L to the shop, exchanged the 45 long colt ammo for 45acp. Twas not xmas time but May 1948.
    Been a pistolero ever after.
    Mucho

  20. Dear Mas:
    A quick note to say how much I appreciate the fine work you do on behalf of all of us gun owners, wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas, and a great 2018.

  21. My first gun, was a gift from my grandfather. A single shot, hinge action, 20 gauge shotgun. I will never forget my first hunt, pheasants and quail along the edge of corn fields in Eastern Nebraska. This is one of my favorite memories. I am a grandfather myself now. I have purchased two single action revolvers in .22LR for my two grandkids.(heritage arms)I am having their names and birthdates engraved in them. They are too small to get the guns yet, but when my son feels they are ready, the guns will be. I hope they love the guns as much as I still love that old 20 gauge. (I still have it!)Merry Christmas all!