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  #51  
Old 09-12-2017, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Hoosier45 View Post
Yes, couldn't agree more about Mr Stewart. He's one of my favorites and an American hero. I'd love to have one of his firearms.
Well, Cooper and Gable both dated Grace Kelly and other screen women, but I'd like some of their guns, too, ha!

Actually, I think it's sort of cool that Cooper was friendly with Grace off the set of, "High Noon" as well as marrying her in the movie.

Clark Gable appeared with her in, "Mogambo", and after, they went on a private safari, raising eyebrows at the time. I wonder which animals Gable or Kelly shot on the real safari? Photos show Grace with a .275 Rigby that I think belonged either to her or to Gable. I don't think it was in the film. A Model 70 Winchester .270 of Gable's supposedly did appear.

A pic of Grace looks as if she wore the Russell's Birdshooter boots espoused by Robert C. Ruark in his famous novels set in colonial Kenya. (Yes, I am able to look at Grace Kelly and notice her boots.)

About three years later, she married Prince Ranier and became Her Serene Highness, Princess Grace of Monaco. I believe she was thereafter loyal to her husband but Hitchcock supposedly said that prior to this, she got around a lot.

Robert Stack was another famous actor into guns. He wrote a shotgun column for, "Gun World" and was a skeet champion. I wouldn't be surprised if he knew Stewart, Gable, and Cooper and maybe shot with all three.

It's such a shame that leading actors now have to avoid openly liking guns.

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Old 09-12-2017, 11:56 AM
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BTW, when did Cooper die? I can look it up, but if someone knows and posts, I'm sure it'd interest those reading this thread.

And who made the replacement grips for his .357 RM? They resemble Roper products, but may not be. They look a little short at the butt.

Kerr's gun shop must have been a good place to see stars. I only met one celeb in a gun store, apart from famous shooters.

That was Mel Torme, a singer who collected Colt arms. He seemed very knowledgeable about SAA's and was informal and friendly.

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Old 09-12-2017, 12:58 PM
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"Well, Cooper and Gable both dated Grace Kelly..."
Or maybe it was the other way around. Grace had a way of falling for her leading men and about anyone else handy so long as they were rich and/or famous. Hers was a very long list including Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Marlon Brando, Paul Newman, JFK, and many others, before Prince Ranier. She had an interesting life.
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Old 09-12-2017, 01:09 PM
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"Well, Cooper and Gable both dated Grace Kelly..."
Or maybe it was the other way around. Grace had a way of falling for her leading men and about anyone else handy so long as they were rich and/or famous. Hers was a very long list including Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Marlon Brando, Paul Newman, JFK, and many others, before Prince Ranier. She had an interesting life.

She may well have had an affair with Sinatra, but he was also involved with Ava Gardner and visited her on the set of, Mogambo. Because his interest was in Gardner, apparently he and Clark Gable didn't cross swords over Gable's involvement with Grace at that time.

BTW, I just read the Wikipedia article on Cooper and was fascinated. I never knew of his interest in art.

He lived from 1901 to 1961, dying at 60, due to prostate cancer.

Born Frank Cooper, he changed his name to Gary as there was another Frank Cooper in Hollywood as he was trying to break into films.
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Old 09-12-2017, 01:57 PM
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Here's another little bit of history, I'll toss in here, although the connection to Gary Cooper's Reg. Mag. is not that direct. Wyo posted above about his grandmother's connection to Yellowstone Park, etc. and the Gary Cooper connection to the Jitney busses that transported passengers to the sonic locations in Yellowstone. In my last post above was about the antique gun store that John Beckwith & I operated and the many movie people that visited it, etc. John Beckwith's father had a Hall automobile dealership in Los Angeles in the early 1900s and when Yellowstone Park changed it's rules to permit motor vehicles in the park in 1915, The Hall agency got the contract to provide jitney busses. John was a teen ager then and he went to Yellowstone with the vehicles as a lot boy, mechanic, tire changer, etc. On his off days he visited Custer battlefield and dug up rusty relic Colt SAAs, Trap door carbines, S&W Americans, etc. which started his famous collection of Rusty Relics & Dug Ups. When John passed away he left me the 75+ yr. collection of over 250 guns, all with their history of where they were found. About 10 yrs.ago the Smithsonian museum borrowed 36 of the guns for a years display. They told me later that the public feedback from that display was beyond anything they expected, as everyone seemed enthralled with that bit of old west history, as those relics seemed to be guns that could talk ! Twice I have displayed the two dozen rusty relic S&Ws from that collection, at our annual Symposium, once at Las Vegas and the last time at Spokane. Ed.

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Old 09-12-2017, 02:11 PM
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Ed, your an interesting guy, and I've enjoyed reading your post.
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Old 09-12-2017, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by opoefc View Post
I got the gun before there was a S&W Historical Foundation, so I never saw the original order invoice and any paperwork between S&W & Cooper, or his dealer, so I don't know whether Cooper specified a 4.5 in barrel, or not.
Ed.
Any idea if the paperwork (and possibly the box) still exists and where it might be? Just curious.
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Old 09-12-2017, 03:41 PM
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If Chad Grip, or prior owners, followed up and got the invoice info., etc. from the SWHF, I don't know. That paperwork was not mentioned in the RIA disclosures. If Don Mundell is reading this thread, perhaps he will post any info. in the archives here. Don, where are you ? Ed.
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Old 09-12-2017, 06:39 PM
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...Clark Gable's '32 Packard...

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Old 09-12-2017, 06:42 PM
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...Gary Cooper's 1929 Packard...

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Old 09-12-2017, 08:32 PM
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It would be nice if the new owner would photograph the bottom of the grips and inside of both panels. Not sure I see the notch near the thumb latch but it's present on some original Ropers. Mathias Gagne worked from stripped frames for the most part, it's easy to make that curve a little full and when the grips are mounted on an assembled gun the problem shows itself. It sure is a beautiful gun.
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Old 09-14-2017, 01:05 PM
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Sal, you're right, of course. I didn't dig deep enough into all the Cooper photos and info that's available.
Duesenbergs are my favorite automobile of all time. If I were a younger man I would open a shop solely for Cord, Auburn and Duesenberg ... and perhaps a nice old Packard once in awhile if business got slow.

I just never had enough loose cash to purchase one although I had performed a restorative refinish on one and repaired one other, mechanically, in my lifetime. Packards were always around back then but Duesenbergs were always scarce. Family story of an uncle who purchased a Dusenberg in 1942 for $500.00. (put it in proper time value etc). His older brother scolding him that especially during the war there would be no way to get enough gas to run it, was convinced (forced) to sell / junk it. He lamented till his dying day he should have kept it. I would not be surprised if many other Duesenbergs and classic gas burners suffered the same fate as they were just very old and expensive to fix. Hopefully the reprocessed steel was dropped on our enemies to make it party worth while.

Back in the late 1980s there was a Duesenberg auction at the Breakers Hotel in Palm Beach, by invitation ONLY. One of my customers "acquired" an invitation for me. It was one of the main thrills of my lifetime. Those few that were in BAD shape, still brought $1 million and over, knowing a full restoration would be required.

the correct slang for Duesenberg is NOT a DOOZIE, it is a "Duesey" ! Thus, I acquired Duesey.com, net and org many years back. Could not get Duesenberg.com (as it belongs to a museum) but got Duesenberg.net. I have had those domains so long they still role into an old antiquated website of mine.

Also have many books, some vintage prints, on Duesenberg. Robert Neal had published a book named "Packards at Speed" which I have one of the few copies, signed to me by Robert Neal. He had fully restored Packard engines on engine stands in his private room at his house. Although I had been invited to come see the collection, I just never had the time to take a week off to do so.
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Old 09-14-2017, 01:48 PM
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Don't forget Jimmy Stewart's military service. He stayed in the Air Force Reserve after WW II and retired as a Brigadier General.
Probably would have been issued a General Officers Pistol ? Wonder who owns that ?
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  #64  
Old 09-14-2017, 04:25 PM
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Group, I little more background for this thread on Cooper:
Several years after Ray Cheely bought the gun from me, he asked me to write him my recollection of the gun's history and connection to Gary Cooper, etc. Here's a condensation of what I wrote Ray: ( Aug. 11,2007 )

Ray & Sheryl, This is what I can recall about Gary Cooper's .357 Registered Magnum, serial number 53692, Registered number 2960. John Beckwith and I operated an antique gun store in Encinitas, CA. from the 60s to 1985., called " John Beckwith's Guns & Relics." Dr. Ken Craig, a friend of John's and mine and fellow S&W collector, was John's dentist. John was well known in the gun fraternity and had been connected to the movie business in the 1930s and knew most of the Hollywood crowd. The store was just north of the Del Mar Race Track ("Where the Turf Meets the Surf") and quite a few famous actors and Hollywood luminaries visited the store when at the track or on their trips to TiJuana. It was a watering hole and mecca for after hours get togethers by the Rich & Famous of the Hollywood scene. I recall times when Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, John Wayne, Jimmy Durante, Leo Carillo ( who lived nearby), Buddy Hackett, Howard Hawks, Bing Crosby, etc., who were all gun collectors, happened by while I was there. (Cooper had already passed away by the time we opened the store )
At that time, Kerrs' Gun store in Hollywood was the place where all the Hollywood crowd bought their guns & gear. You could spend a few hours there and see any number of movie people. The manager there was a friend of ours named Gerry Knight. About early 1962, Gerry told us that the store was going to buy all the Gary Cooper gun collection of 26 guns from Cooper's widow Rocky Cooper. In the collection were two S&Ws, a K 22 and the Reg. Mag. My gun fund was rather low at the time, being a Civil Servant with wife and 4 kids, so Ken Craig bought the Reg. Mag. from Kerrs. Included with the purchase, was a holster I marked "Cooper" made by Arvo Ojala. Arvo was a friend of mine and I recognized the holster as coming from his shop, and I showed the holster to Arvo several years later and he verified it as one made for Cooper. I later learned that Warren F " Andy" Anderson, an employee of Ojalas and also a friend of mine, actually made the holster for Cooper sometime in the mid 1950s. There was some conflict between Andy and Arvo as to who really invented the steel lined quick draw holster that Arvo patented. Andy left Arvo's shop and opened his own shop in Hollywood in 1957, called " The Gunfighter" and became a mecca for the Hollywood actors, including Gary Cooper, who were appearing in the western movies & TV series popular at the time. ( The opening scene in "Gunsmoke" shows Matt Dillon (James Arness) in a shoot out with a gunslinger. That gunslinger is Arvo Ojala.) They all learned their quick draw skills from Arvo or Andy. Gary's Reg. Mag. stayed in Ken Craigs collection until I made arrangements to buy part of his collection and broker the rest. I had the gun for awhile until you bought it from me at the S&WCA meeting in Scottsdale. As you know the gun was shipped to W.H.Hoegee & Co., Los Angeles, CA., the S&W distributor, on Sept. 20, 1937. Quite a few west coast shipped Reg. Mags., including Jimmy Stewart's R.M. # 100, went through Hoegees or Calif. Hardware Co. as they were the two major S&W distributors . Kerr's and other gun shops got their inventory from those two wholesalers. I was never able to get any evidence that Gary Cooper ordered the gun from S&W. My assumption is that he bought it from Kerr's inventory, as he did many of his guns. That's all I can recall now from my notes and files regarding Gary Cooper's Reg. Mag. I never could find a photo of him with the gun, although I gave you some photos of Gary in his gun room with other guns. I never met Gary Cooper, however I think we would have hit it off, so to speak, both being western raised on ranches, he in Montana and myself in AZ. and got our start as Western movie extras. He went a little farther in that business than I did! Good Luck, Ed.

Hope this adds a little more color to the thread on Gary Cooper's Registered Magnum!
Ed.
Dear Ed, With the fondest regard ... and ... the highest respect, I have only one sentiment to relate here:


PS: Owning a gun shop consulting and catering to the golden era Hollywood rich and famous is just about as cool as it gets. Being able to relate these experiences so many years later with such deadly accuracy is beyond cool. Thank you for enriching all our collective (and collecting) lifestyles.

With gratitude, Sal Raimondi, Sr.
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Old 09-14-2017, 07:16 PM
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Dear Ed, With the fondest regard ... and ... the highest respect, I have only one sentiment to relate here:

The Jungle Book - I wanna be like you w/lyrics - YouTube

PS: Owning a gun shop consulting and catering to the golden era Hollywood rich and famous is just about as cool as it gets. Being able to relate these experiences so many years later with such deadly accuracy is beyond cool. Thank you for enriching all our collective (and collecting) lifestyles.

With gratitude, Sal Raimondi, Sr.
I was a frequent visitor to Mr. Beckwiths store in Encinitas Ca. I bought many guns from that gentleman. Big Larry
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Old 09-14-2017, 07:29 PM
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Great thread! I love to read about the history behind the registered magnums and those that owned them. Thanks for sharing gentlemen.
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Old 09-14-2017, 07:31 PM
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This thread is beyond the looking glass! Thanks to all who contributed and furthered my education.
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Old 09-14-2017, 07:57 PM
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What a great post, and so informative. Thanks so much.

Just made one of the forum's best threads even better.
When Ed Cornett (opoefc) speaks ... the Dos Equis guy (aka The Most Interesting Man in the World) shuts up and starts taking notes.

You heard it here, first !
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Old 09-14-2017, 08:07 PM
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Well , okay you guys. For many years I owned Clark Gables custom Orvis bamboo rods, in a special red leather case, with his initials CG embossed on the front. They were lightly used and of course beautifully made. My source for authentication was his widow.
It was among many great bamboo rods I once gathered. Alas, I now do not know where any of them are.
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Old 09-14-2017, 08:09 PM
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Now we know about Gary Cooper's registered magnum, but what ever happened to the Colt Single Action that he carried in High Noon? If that ever turns up and is sold, I'm betting on six figures.
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Old 09-14-2017, 08:11 PM
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Well , okay you guys. For many years I owned Clark Gables custom Orvis bamboo rods, in a special red leather case, with his initials CG embossed on the front. They were lightly used and of course beautifully made. My source for authentication was his widow.
It was among many great bamboo rods I once gathered. Alas, I now do not know where any of them are.
Were they in that 1981 (or 1982) Sotheby's auction ? I have a few of those auction catalogs buried SOMEWHERE in my 40 years pile of S&W paper stuff.
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Old 09-14-2017, 08:15 PM
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Pistolpal:

Not to derail this fantastic thread, but you wouldn't happen to have any photos, would you?? I only have one Orvis bamboo rod, and it didn't belong to anyone famous, and I've been offered crazy money for it... I can't imagine what yours would be worth!! I love the exquisite workmanship on these little treasures. Really interesting that Clark Gable seems to have loved the same sorts of things that many of us love: RMs, classic cars, handmade bamboo fishing rods....

Maybe this is one of the ones you owned:



Sorry for any thread drift...

Best Regards, Les
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Old 09-14-2017, 08:57 PM
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I wonder which animals Gable or Kelly shot on the real safari?
Had to be the the "elephant in his pajamas". But that may be "irrelephant". Enough said ?

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Old 09-14-2017, 10:10 PM
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"That was Mel Torme, a singer who collected Colt arms. He seemed very knowledgeable about SAA's and was informal and friendly."

Mel had family in Alabama. His cousin Marvin Torme owned a grocery store in Bessemer, Alabama. I used to see Marvin carrying his deposits to the bank, wearing a Browning Hi Power. He told me that had attended one of Jeff Cooper's Gunsite classes.
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Old 09-14-2017, 10:34 PM
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There was a lot more to Gary Cooper, by the way, than the simple cowboy or American hero he portrayed in his films.
According to historians and long list of lady friends ... yes, a lot more !
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Old 09-14-2017, 10:37 PM
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Fascinating thread. I wonder what happened to Cooper's K-22.
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Old 09-14-2017, 11:19 PM
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One of Coop's paramours in his earlier years was a considerably older American woman who had married a titled Italian Count. When she accompanied him back to America, the local wags said that "he had crossed the Atlantic on the Countess di Frasso." The Countess provided Coop an entry into the world of Hollywood's glamorous high society and stardom, as she had all the connections. And then Coop dumped her.
------------------------------------------
This prompted me to do a little research on Countess Dorothy (Taylor White) di Frasso. It is a fascinating story. She led a colorful life, consorted with all sorts of notorious and famous characters (she was definitely a member of the Hollywood in-crowd in the 1930s and 1940s), and could be considered as being equal parts adventuress, spy, con woman, underworld moll, and prominent socialite. She died in 1954 at age 66 aboard a train going from Las Vegas to LA from unexplained causes (at least the newspaper accounts of her death do not mention the causes). Her body was found with an estimated $250K worth of jewelry on it. I am surprised there has not been a movie made about her, as there is plenty of material to warrant one.

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Old 09-15-2017, 08:53 AM
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Can't...help...myself....

With respect, you mean provenance, not providence.
Kevin, your writer's side is coming out!
Chuck
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Old 09-15-2017, 09:04 AM
kwill1911 kwill1911 is offline
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Kevin, your writer's side is coming out!
Chuck
Hmmm. Not sure that's a compliment but I'll plead guilty. So, as a weak attempt to contribute positively to this thread, here's a picture of Cooper during WWII visiting the Marines in the S. Pacific.
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Old 09-15-2017, 09:25 AM
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Hmmm. Not sure that's a compliment but I'll plead guilty. So, as a weak attempt to contribute positively to this thread, here's a picture of Cooper during WWII visiting the Marines in the S. Pacific.
Definitely a compliment coming from an old English teacher.
Chuck
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Old 09-15-2017, 09:36 AM
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With proper respect and credit where credit is due ... let us all remember it was Gary Garbrecht who singlehandedly created the world's first shortage of Registered Magnums and pre-war non-registered magnums, followed closely (or in parallel) by Ray Cheely.

Yes, there were (back then), and are now, many serious RM collectors other than a few key players but we're talking mega super-collectors. RIP both Gary and Ray, and thank you both.

Gary's gunroom was a sight to behold. Rows upon rows of custom made multi-level shelved display cases (behind glass sliders) that when he sat at his desk he (and a guest sitting opposite him) could view the majority of his collection. The NRA Museum had nothing on Gary Garbrecht.

I owned only a few RMs but was heavy into the Model 3s. When Gary ran out of RMs, next came the world's first shortage of upper grade Model 3s in all variations and the first major value appreciation of all time, percentage-wise, over any other prior time frame.

You just have to admire guys that take their collecting interests so seriously, aggressively and passionately.

As us old timers are dropping out for one reason or another (mostly the obvious one ... old age) I am confident by participating in this forum, that our mutual passions of S&W collecting will withstand time.

In appreciation to you "youngguns", including my son Salvatore, that keep the faith, passion and love for these fine, older, S&Ws.
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Old 09-15-2017, 04:12 PM
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Default Another salute to Gary Garbrecht

I was glad to see the salute to Gary. I was thinking of him today, as I was shooting photos of some of my RMs for an article and included the 5 1/2, 7, and 7 1/2 barreled ones i got from Gary, which i had out the safe for the first time in years. The ad he ran in SGN for years pulled in a lot of RMs before everyone was looking for them.
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Old 09-15-2017, 04:23 PM
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I was glad to see the salute to Gary. I was thinking of him today, as I was shooting photos of some of my RMs for an article and included the 5 1/2, 7, and 7 1/2 barreled ones i got from Gary, which i had out the safe for the first time in years. The ad he ran in SGN for years pulled in a lot of RMs before everyone was looking for them.
He also ran it in GunList for years. If you see one of his old GL ads you'll likely find mine for the Model 3s either on the same or next page.
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Old 09-15-2017, 10:50 PM
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Gary Coopers RM was not the only RM in that auction that sold for some serious money. Seems like there is no let up in interest and desire for owning a nice one.
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Old 09-16-2017, 12:40 AM
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Here are two pictures of the Jaguar XK120 sports cars that Cooper and Gable owned. Gable bought the first XK120 that arrived in the US. Then Cooper had to have one, too. There was a friendly car rivalry between Cooper and Gable. Gable owned a couple more. The chassis number of Gable's last XK120 is close to mine, but mine was originally Charles Hornburg's car.
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Old 09-16-2017, 01:24 PM
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This has been a great thread that I have enjoyed very much. It reminded me of an old news photo I own about Clark Gable. Although hes pictured with that other brand I thought the members here would like to see it anyway.




"HE'S A ONE-GUN GUY OFF THE SCREEN

On the screen, many a lad does feats of derring-do with pistols. Off the screen, Clark Gable has proven he can do things with pistols in scoring some high shooting records at the Hotel Del Monte, where he rested before starting work on his new picture 'Cain and Mabel'. He's shown on the Del Monte Gun Club grounds. In addition to pistol work, he's a good trapshooter and fine fisherman. 5-2-36
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Old 09-16-2017, 06:27 PM
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Looks like a Colt Officer's Model Target.
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Old 09-16-2017, 07:48 PM
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Looks like Ropers as well.
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Old 09-16-2017, 08:14 PM
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The Big Gorilla let me hold Cooper's Ojala holster once...
Regards,
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Old 09-16-2017, 09:07 PM
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I held Coopers RM at the annual symposium in Boise. It was owned by our current president.
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Old 09-16-2017, 10:21 PM
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Uncle Ed (opoefc)was in the movies. Cars, Guns, and the Ladies.....I missed my calling, I should have been a STAR!!

I did hold Cooper's RM in Boise and I have stayed at a Holiday Inn Express.
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