Tag Archives: history

Cody Museum to Offer “Veteran VIP Experience”

January 17, 2019— Today, the Cody Firearms Museum (CFM) revealed a teaser for one of its new premier exhibits to be launched at its grand re-opening the weekend of July 5, 2019. Among the many exhibits to be unveiled this summer, the Military Area will incorporate first-hand accounts from U.S. veterans. The CFM seeks U.S. veterans to relay testimonials of their service and experiences at the CFM Veteran VIP Experience.

The CFM is seeking veteran organizations to partner with them in promoting and/or sponsoring the special event. The CFM Veteran VIP Experience requires an RSVP to the event and is exclusive to veterans and active military personnel. Inquires may be directed to kie@solutionnaires.com.

The CFM Veteran VIP Experience is an invitation to veterans and active military to be the very first to record personal accounts, offering museum-goers a glimpse into the complexity of their jobs and the magnitude of their bravery. “The CFM Veteran VIP Experience will capture a living history that we are proud to curate at our museum,” said Ashley Hlebinsky, Curator at the Cody Firearms Museum. “The testimonials from our veterans will provide insight for generations to come as well as create a community-centric model for our museum.”

The CFM Veteran VIP Experience will take place on July 5, the day before the CFM opens to the public. Participating veterans will have a first glance at the exhibit and are invited the following day to the public opening along with their families. “We want to offer our veterans a VIP experience while becoming the first to contribute to this recorded legacy,” continued Hlebinsky. “The interactive component is user-friendly and will be on display for our 200,000 annual visitors. We’re calling on vets and vet organizations to join us during our grand re-opening in July.”

The Cody Firearms Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West houses more than 7,000 historically significant firearms with more than 15,000 firearms-related artifacts. The Cody Firearms Museum collection spans 800 years, including recently manufactured firearms. We seek to provide every visitor – from gun aficionados, to firearms novices, to those without previous firearms experience – with a unique educational opportunity. This museum is more than just guns; firearms help inform the story of the West, the story of gun cultures, and the story of people. Visit us at the Center of the West in Cody WY, and at our website, centerofthewest.org.

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Filed under Firearms, shot show, Uncategorized

Gunsmith Writes About P.O. Ackley

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A new book from Gun Digest Media, P.O. Ackley: America’s Gunsmith by author and gunsmith Fred Zeglin; takes the most comprehensive look ever into the life and work of Parker Ackley, the eminent gunsmith, barrel maker, teacher and cartridge developer. The book is set for release the week of March 6, 2017

Ten years of extensive research highlights not just the history of cartridge and rifle development, but a never-before-seen look at a humble man who influenced nearly everything we know about shooting and ballistics today. Ackley’s ideas on reloading, rifle accuracy, safety, cartridge choice, and wildcats are just as relevant for modern “gun cranks” as they were in Ackley’s heyday.

This hardcover, 256-page study of P.O. Ackley’s work is the first in Gun Digest Media’s Heritage Series celebrating the iconic guns, designers and manufacturers who shaped today’s firearms landscape. The book is illustrated with never-before-seen photos from personal archives of Ackley’s friends, family, and associates. From the dusty, oil rag-covered machine shops of Ackley’s early years, to stunning modern-day firearms chambered in Ackley’s timeless wildcats.  A full-color center section brings the story to life.

From the Foreword of the Book

“It is a difficult task to write a book that is equal parts technical manual and biography, yet Fred Zeglin has done just that. Within the covers of this book you’ll find the history of P.O. Ackley, and a glimpse into the man’s life, as well as a comprehensive understanding of the cartridges that he left behind. And, as a wonderful bonus to those of us who still tinker with copper, lead and brass, there is a wealth of handloading recipes for the Ackley cartridges, using modern powders and projectiles, to allow today’s shooter to connect with the wildcatter of yesteryear.” Phillip Massaro

About the Author

Fred Zeglin has been building custom hunting rifles for over thirty years. Zeglin has taught classes for the NRA Short Term Gunsmithing program at three separate colleges and is the Coordinator/Instructor for the Firearms Technology Program at Flathead Valley Community College. He has published two books; Hawk Cartridges Manual and Wildcat Cartridges, Reloader’s Handbook of Wildcat Cartridge Design he has also contributed to numerous publications.  Fred has worked with American Gunsmithing Institute to produce two instructional DVDs, Taming Wildcats and Reloading A to Z.

Comments on the book from others:

“The book is great, I am very happy with it. I’ve told every one who would be interested in it to get it. Thanks so much for honoring Grandpa with such a great book.” Ron Pearson, P.O. Ackley’s Grandson.

“P.O. Ackley, America’s Gunsmith” is so extensive and so well done, I am at a loss to adequately describe it!”  Dennis “Mike” Bellm, the last guy to buy out P.O. Ackley’s shop.

P.O. Ackley: America’s Gunsmith by Fred Zeglin, Gun Digest Media, ISBN-13: 978-1-4402-4759-0

Buy this book here.

Also available as an Ebook, click here

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Filed under Books, Gunsmithing, reloading, wildcat

Elmer Keith, a Lifetime of Memories

Imagine you reach the end of your life and you have saved a few mementos of your favorite memories.  You were an avid hunter all your life, and you saved the recovered bullets from each trophy you took.  From your first mule deer when you were just a lad, to the bullet that stopped a cougar from munching on you.

Now with  sense of history, you decide to pass this material along to a friend, another gun writer who will perhaps use the material for future articles.  But, more important, he appreciates the lifetime of experience represented by your little collection.

Fast forward, Elmer Keith has long since left the hunting fields, his writer buddy who I was unable to discover by name, passes away too.  His family decides to donate all his reloading gear to the gunsmith program at Murray State College in Oklahoma.  In the box is discovered the collection of Elmer Keith hunting bullets.  For unknown reasons the bullets were not immediately donated to a museum.  A decision that the current director of the program regrets.

The entire collection disappeared a couple of weeks after these pictures were taken.  I feel lucky to have seen these items and to have been able to photograph them.  It is my sincere hope that the person who has this bit of history will realize how wrong it is to keep it locked away from gun lovers everywhere.  There is an Elmer Keith Museum in the Cabela’s in Boise, ID that is the natural resting place for these items, along side many other items from the Keith collection.

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Filed under bullets', hunting, Pistol, Rifles

Gunsmith Archeology

Little piece of history found in the Z-Hat Custom shop.You never know what you might find inside an old gun.  This license was inside a gun stock I was given as a stock pattern for a shotgun.  It’s my practice to notify the client when I find such things and see if they want it returned to the hiding place or if they want it held out for them.  In this case there is no client but its a cool little piece of history.

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Filed under Firearms, Gunsmithing, Stocks

Gunsmith or Firearms Industry Hall of Fame!

Years ago a privately owned “Hall of Fame” for gunsmiths was started. Naturally it did not survive the business that started it. It would be nice to see a true Hall of Fame for gunsmiths, barrel makers, engravers, etc. housed in a permanent location.

P.O. Ackley and Harry Pope were the first inducties into the now defunct Hall of Fame, I would suggest that they should be in the first class inducted into any new and permanant Hall of Fame. In order to make this happen we would need a Museum of good reputation and longevity to take on the task of maintaining a collection in relation to the Hall of Fame. The NRA has a National Firearms Museum, and another natural choice would be the Cody Firearms Museum.

There are numerous people who have toiled their entire life in the gun industry and they should be remembered for thier contributions to the trade. Let me know what you think of the idea.

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Filed under Firearms, Uncategorized