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Old 03-25-2010, 12:34 PM
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Default Bufford Pusser's .41 Magnum?

I have always been intrigued about the life of Bufford Pusser ever since I watched "Walking Tall" when I was a kid. I heard he carried a .41 Magnum and used it to kill a couple of people, and wondered about any other details about the gun and if it was a M57 or M58. Recently I found a Yahoo Group called "Crime Myths" and it has some good info and photos about his life and a list of his guns(he had some pretty nice guns for a small town sheriff) and on the list are serial numbers. Listed is a Smith & Wesson .41 Magnum, nickle plated with serial number 29482. There is no letter in the serial number but it should be around 1965-1966, and can anyone tell if this is a M-57 or M-58? The gun is owned by someone in Tennessee who's name is kept very confidential for some strange reason.
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Old 03-25-2010, 12:45 PM
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BP Home

http://www.bufordpussermuseum.com/index.html

Check out the History area and you'll see mention of his guns.

The article about the day he was shot and his wife was killed mentions this:

Buford decided that it was time to change his artillery from a 12 gauge shotgun to an M-16 carbine. He also changed his .41 caliber magnum to a .357 magnum and started driving a new Oldsmobile Toronado. From that day on, Buford vowed to find the men that took a piece of his life away.

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Old 03-25-2010, 05:44 PM
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Pusser was an interesting character. If you are ever in Pigeon Forge, TN, Carbo's Police Museum has a lot of articles that belonged to him. Apparently, he has a real fondness for Colt Python revolvers. They also have what is left of the Corvette that he was killed in.
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Old 03-25-2010, 05:56 PM
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Last I heard, the Corvette wreckage was moved to the Buford Pusser Museum (his home) in Adamsville.

EDIT: Yep, thats where it is now.

http://www.bufordpussermuseum.com/photos.html

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Old 03-25-2010, 11:11 PM
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Hi:
My understanding is that toward the end Sheriff Pusser began carrying a Charter Arms Bulldog .44spl.
Jimmy
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Old 03-25-2010, 11:48 PM
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I though he carried a big ole hickory stick!
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Old 03-26-2010, 07:07 AM
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Default Colt 357

A friend of mine has a Colt Python 4 inch nickel plated special salute to Bufford Pusser from the Colt Factory..wonder how much it would be worth today..and the Corvette he was killed in was given to him by a car dealer in Florence, Alabama for the work he did for her..he would be at the dealership signing books and autographs several times a year..I am sure it helped keep his legend alive for a lot longer than it would have normally been..due to the damage of the shooting in which his wife was killed and he was injured when he would smile only one side of his face would show emotion..the facial muscles on one side would not respond..gave him a weird look when he smiled..all5x
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Old 03-26-2010, 10:11 AM
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The car was given to him by the now defunct Gene Crump Chevrolet in Tuscumbia, Alabama in return for the many personal appearances he made at the dealership. Pusser and Crump were friends; in fact, Crump was a pallbearer at Pusser's funeral. The Corvette's remains do now indeed sit at the Pusser home and museum in Adamsville, Tennessee. As far as that .41 goes, it's a mystery to me as well. I live fairly close to McNairy County, and have a customer of mine who is the official Pusser historian for the county, and he can't give me a definitive answer on the gun. I think he knows who has it now, but has never volunteered the information to me.
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Old 03-27-2010, 12:47 PM
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So can someone with an S&W catalogue tell if that partial serial number is a M-57 or M58?
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Old 04-13-2011, 05:47 PM
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Default Pusser's .41 magnum S&W

Hello to all, I have extensively studied the life of Sheriff Buford Pusser for several years. I have been in law enforcement for close to 28 years.

Buford's .41 magnum was a S&W Mdl. 58 4" Nickel with an "S" prefix serial number. I was told by a close friend of Pusser's that the .41 magnum was stolen from his house during a burglary and was never recovered.

Pusser started out carrying the Model 58 in 1964 which was the first year of production for the model. He later carried several different Model 19 S&W revolvers and was known to carry a 2" S&W or Colt .38 spl as a backup.

Pusser was also fond of the Colt Python revolvers. The night he died he had a 2 1/2" Nickel Python .357 that burned after the fatal crash with his Corvette.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:25 PM
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There is a Yahoo Group called "Crime Myths" that is all about the life and times of Bufford Pusser and in the pictures section it has a list of aprox. 40 of his personal guns, including Smiths, Colts, Brownings, Berettas, and Winchesters. He even has a S&W M-76 Submachinegun!
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:33 PM
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I just ordered a book written by Bufurd's daughter Dwana. I was always fascinated by Buford, and I wish that there were still more lawmen like him today. There are still alot of good men, but I am starting to see alot of politicians in some of these offices more than just cops. Some departments are starting to get more about image than integrity. They would rather make sure their officers look good and don't make trouble instead of doing good old fashioned police work.
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:46 PM
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I have that book, "Walking On" by Dwana Pusser. It is very informative, and gives a side to Sheriff Pusser not seen by his enemies or his friends. It is through the eyes of his daughter, who looked up to her Dad like any other little girl.
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Old 04-14-2011, 12:06 AM
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Any truth to the rumor of the tie-rod on the Corvette he died in being partially hacksawed almost in two; being the suspected cause of the crash?
I've heard this tale told ever since he died in the Corvette crash that fateful night.
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Old 04-14-2011, 09:15 PM
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Default Pusser crash

No, I have seen nothing to back up the tie-rod story, just speculation. In my opinion, I know of two other crashes that occurred with similar year model Corvettes. There was speculation that he may have been poisoned. Nothing ever panned out as his father "Carl" didn't want his grave disturbed for autopsy.

The big problem with those cars (Corvettes) was HORSE-POWER. The cars would out-run the bias ply tires and even the new radials out at that time had lots of problems (Remember the Firestone 500 radials from 73-74) They had major problems sheding their belts. Now, years later, we know about matching a quality tire that is speed rated to a particular car for safety reasons.

There was a witness, if memory serves me right, that lived close that thought they heard a blow-out or gunshot right before Pusser's crash. Which a blow-out, would allow for the car being out of control and producing skid and yawl marks like those left at the accident site.

Trooper Paul Erwin worked the crash. He later retired from the Tennessee Highway Patrol and was later elected Sheriff of McNairy Co.
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:36 PM
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Anybody got a clue why they never show the original movie "Walking Tall" with Joe Don Baker?
They used to show it alot, however, lately you never see it replayed anymore.
They show the one with the Rock and Johnny Knoxville...but it's not representative of the true story of Buford Pusser. IMO

Sure wish I could find it on dvd.
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Old 04-15-2011, 01:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BEARMAN View Post
Anybody got a clue why they never show the original movie "Walking Tall" with Joe Don Baker?
They used to show it alot, however, lately you never see it replayed anymore.
They show the one with the Rock and Johnny Knoxville...but it's not representative of the true story of Buford Pusser. IMO

Sure wish I could find it on dvd.
I've got all the books, and a box set DVD of all three movies put out about a year ago by Rhino, but I understand the box set is out of print, I think. I wish someone would make an ACCURATE representation film of the late Sheriff, or at least someone like the History Channel produce a good documentary. As much as I like those three films, the reality of them is that they are BASED on certain events in the life of Buford Pusser. Sip, you live in Hollywood. See what you can do!
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Old 04-15-2011, 05:38 PM
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I have the boxed set of 3 movies and the TV series with Bo Svenson all are ok. I also have the book by his daughter and that is really good and the books by Morris.

I belong to a few yahoo groups and one is specifically about him it has a lot of good information.

But I do wish the History Channel or discovery would do something on him that would be something to watch.
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Old 04-16-2011, 12:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Farmer17 View Post
....on the list are serial numbers. Listed is a Smith & Wesson .41 Magnum, nickle plated with serial number 29482. There is no letter in the serial number but it should be around 1965-1966, ......
An N-Frame with that serial number (it probably is an assembly number) would have to come sometime in 1972 and would be an N prefix. It is not possible to determine specific model number from a serial number as all N-Frames regardless of model were numbered in the same series. It could just as well be a 27, 28, 29, etc as either a 57 or 58.
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Old 08-09-2011, 12:33 AM
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The gunwriter, Frank James wrote a book some years back and it makes mention of the gun Sheriff Pusser used was a 4 inch nickel plated model 57 Smith & Wesson. I have not read or spoke to anyone that has said anything else though I did email his daughter and inquire about that particular handgun, but she was unable to provide me any additional information.
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Old 08-09-2011, 05:48 PM
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i thought it was a 58 and i think i say pictures of it somewhere, anyone got those?
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Old 08-09-2011, 06:04 PM
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I thought that the M-58 was designed as a service revolver and was only offered in the S&W mat blued finish. If Pusser had a nickel plated .41 magnum it must have been an M-57 unless he had an M-58 refinished.
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Old 08-09-2011, 06:13 PM
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The 58 was also made in nickel.
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Old 08-09-2011, 07:06 PM
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Thing I've always wondered, is why did he retire the .41 in favor of a .357 after the ambush that wounded him and killed his wife? I would have got the .357 as a backup, and kept carrying that big .41 if it was me. The thing is, his weapons that were with him during the ambush weren't even a factor. He never had a chance to use the revolver, or the shotgun he had with him either.
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Old 08-09-2011, 07:09 PM
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didnt he get a m16 after that shoot out that he lost his wife in?
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Old 08-10-2011, 12:27 AM
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didnt he get a m16 after that shoot out that he lost his wife in?
He replaced his 12 gauge automatic shotgun with an M16. I think it was a Colt, and it's hanging on the wall in the basement of his home in Adamsville, which is now a museum. Any of you get a chance to go, check it out. I really enjoy it; great part of the country too. My girlfriend grew up in his hometown, so I get to go more often now.
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Old 08-10-2011, 12:29 AM
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Default Buford Pusser

Robertson Trading Post in Henderson, Tn, has records of where Buford purchased guns from Mr. Fred Robertson.

Mr. Robertson started keeping firearms records before the 1968 gun control act.
I looked thru some of the A&D books and found where Buford purchased his guns. I didn't make any copies or anything because that's not what I was looking for.

Mr. Fred Robertson is the one who cleaned Bufords revolver after his wife was ambushed.
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Old 08-30-2011, 11:12 PM
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Groo here
As I recall ,, The ammo for the 41mag was custom loaded by one
J.D. Jones who had been at Supervel and later started S.S.K.
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Old 08-31-2011, 12:59 AM
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The original movie was shot here in Hardeman County and in Madison Co.
The bar that the *bad guys* ran in the movie and that was shown burning at the end is still there, btw. My b-i-l was a bouncer there for several years. That particular bar, The Pine Ridge Club, was never one of THE problem bars in this part of TN - Sheriff Pusser wouldn't have dealt with them anyway since it's in Madison Co.

Back when I was working I was a factory rep and spent a LOT of time on the road. I loved it when Walking Tall came on the TV - Those are the back roads that I ride my bike on.

I also know a few of the extras in the flick (one lives 3 houses down from me) and it's really cool seeing them as they were in 1972-73. Hard to believe that was almost 40 years ago We were just kids in our 20s.....
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Last edited by DeadAye; 08-31-2011 at 01:17 AM. Reason: Wrong bar - Not The Boat Dock - Senior moment - Duh
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Old 08-31-2011, 06:25 AM
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Quote:
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Thing I've always wondered, is why did he retire the .41 in favor of a .357 after the ambush that wounded him and killed his wife? I would have got the .357 as a backup, and kept carrying that big .41 if it was me.
I have stopped using certain rifles due to the ammo is not carried in most stores. While I own a handgun in .41, I have only fired it a few times but even the store where it was purchased does not carry .41 ammo.

We all carry spare ammo in our vehicles. With the late Sheriff, he likely carried more than most. Yet if I were seriously carrying as he should have, the local availibility of ammo in my caliber would be a consideration in what I carried.
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:03 AM
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The original movie was shot here in Hardeman County and in Madison Co.
The bar that the *bad guys* ran in the movie and that was shown burning at the end is still there, btw. My b-i-l was a bouncer there for several years. That particular bar, The Pine Ridge Club, was never one of THE problem bars in this part of TN - Sheriff Pusser wouldn't have dealt with them anyway since it's in Madison Co.

Back when I was working I was a factory rep and spent a LOT of time on the road. I loved it when Walking Tall came on the TV - Those are the back roads that I ride my bike on.

I also know a few of the extras in the flick (one lives 3 houses down from me) and it's really cool seeing them as they were in 1972-73. Hard to believe that was almost 40 years ago We were just kids in our 20s.....
Where in Madison County and Hardeman are these locales? My girlfriend is from Leapwood and Adamsville, and used to hang out as a kid in Henderson, so I've seen the courthouse where courtroom scenes were filmed, but neither of us have any idea where the other locations are.
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:09 AM
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The first movie was filmed here in Henderson, Tn ( Chester County ). Most people here at the time knew Buford. Some where friends with him.
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Old 09-12-2011, 02:04 AM
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I spoke to the historian for the museum and he was kind enough to give me the serial number and model of the gun. It was a nickle plated 4 inch model 57. According to Smith and Wesson the serial number dates the manufacture date late in 1963. My understanding is that this gun was given to a family friend after the Louise Hatchcock shooting. Out of respect for those that own this weapon I did not inquire as to whom they were or where they resided.
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Old 09-12-2011, 08:46 AM
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Now this has been a fascinating bit of history
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Old 09-12-2011, 09:45 AM
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In the first movie the Lucky Spot bar is played by The Pine Ridge Club, which is located on TN-18, north of Bolivar (Hardeman Co.) and is just into Madison Co. Here's the Google Map of the area - The white box at 18 & Swink Rd is the bar.
If you ride east on Swink and zoom about some of the roads shooting off of it you'll see some sights that may be familiar to you. They shot the movie on a lot of roads here about including south of the bar location in Hardeman County. They are mostly very nicely paved now as opposed to what you see in the movie
As Smith41Mag points out they also shot in Henderson (great gun store in Henderson, btw) in Chester Co. There are roads in the movie that I'm not familiar with which may well be near and around Henderson. Henderson is at the junction of US-45 and TN-100.

A really nice motorcycle ride to Henderson from the bar is to just follow Swink (it keeps changing names) south/ south/east to TN-100 and turn left on 100.
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Old 01-18-2012, 11:35 PM
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Default PUSSER'S 41 MAG.

S&W brought out the Model 58 in July of 1964. The beginning serial numbers started for the first production year (S-prefix) #S-258032 to S-260632 first production run started started July 10 1964. Months later the guns would have started appearing on gun shop shelves. (Fact: Pusser was carrying a .41 mag Smith in 1964 the first year of his first term as Sheriff of McNairy Co.) This info on the production dates is in S&W's Factory Book by S&W historian Roy Jinks. The Serial number listed here in this blog is NOT correct.

Deputy Petie Plunk , Buford's deputy for several years, told me that Pusser's nickel .41mag had fixed sights consistant with the model 58. Plunk also confirmed Pusser's Nickel .41 magnum was stolen from his home during a burglary and was never recovered. Maybe thats why (IF, someone does possess Pusser's 41mag.)they do not wish to be identified.

I always try to get facts straight before I speak. There have been numerous curators at the museum thru the years passing out less than accurate information. I have lost track at how many (curators) have come and gone. The Moffett girls were usually on top of the facts when they were there. Their father Jim, served under Pusser as a Deputy.

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Old 01-19-2012, 01:30 PM
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I though he carried a big ole hickory stick!
Like this?



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Old 11-27-2012, 10:28 PM
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Default The question is who murdered Buford Pusser

The truth will come out...
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Old 11-28-2012, 07:47 PM
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Really cool thread; it's been going two years. I'd like to learn more about the whereabouts of that .41, and other interesting facts about Pusser. I actually emailed A&E, and told them I'd like to see a true Buford Pusser documentary. No response, but hopefully, someone will read it, and give it a try.
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Old 11-29-2012, 02:04 AM
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i too have his daughters book....good stuff...i worked with a LEO in the 70's that knew him well...
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Old 02-20-2013, 09:11 PM
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I never saw this thread and thought I'd bring it back. I really enjoyed it and hope others do too.
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Old 02-20-2013, 09:47 PM
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I was just talking about Buford Pusser a couple of days ago and wanting to find the movies. You can still get them on Amazon. I have not seen any of the three movies on TV for quite a long time.
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Old 02-21-2013, 09:48 AM
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I have Bufford Pussers gun list but for some reason I cannot upload it to photo bucket. If someone wants me to email it to them maybe they can it get it posted on this forum.
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jframe View Post
wish someone would make an ACCURATE representation film of the late Sheriff, or at least someone like the History Channel produce a good documentary. As much as I like those three films, the reality of them is that they are BASED on certain events in the life of Buford Pusser.
Seeing this thread brought back up makes me chuckle. There is so much supposedly accurate information about Pusser's life and death it boggles the mind.

But take "jframe"s comment above and ask yourself why the History channel or another documentary entity has not been made. There is much more about the man that has never been brought to film or book. There are many stories locally that paint a different picture. And though I have only been around the area for a few years (I live very near to his home), I have heard stories from many who actually knew/grew up with him. Some good, some not so good. I personally won't comment as I did not know the man, and can only relate what I have been told. Some stories made me sad as I too, grew up with those movies and thought of him as an American legend.

As for the .41, I had heard it was a M58
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Old 02-21-2013, 04:16 PM
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Don't know, have not talked to anybody that claimed to know but I would like to believe that Bufford would carry a 58.
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:05 PM
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Originally Posted by robertwhite View Post
Seeing this thread brought back up makes me chuckle. There is so much supposedly accurate information about Pusser's life and death it boggles the mind.

But take "jframe"s comment above and ask yourself why the History channel or another documentary entity has not been made. There is much more about the man that has never been brought to film or book. There are many stories locally that paint a different picture. And though I have only been around the area for a few years (I live very near to his home), I have heard stories from many who actually knew/grew up with him. Some good, some not so good. I personally won't comment as I did not know the man, and can only relate what I have been told. Some stories made me sad as I too, grew up with those movies and thought of him as an American legend.

As for the .41, I had heard it was a M58
I enjoy all the stories about him, good and bad. I figure the guy was human, and not entirely perfect like many others made him out to be. Legends are not always good; many are tainted, but that still doesn't make them any less interesting. I've always thought Frank Hamer, the Ranger who was behind getting Bonnie and Clyde was an interesting legend. Basically, he ambushed and killed both of them. However, things were different in the Thirties, just like they were different in the Sixties, when Pusser was sheriff. I know one thing for sure: there was a bunch of bad business at that Mississippi/Tennessee state line in McNairy and Alcorn counties all through the Forties, Fifties, Sixties, and probably most of the Seventies. Pusser may have took bribes, looked the other way, whatever. But I damn sure know that I wouldn't have wanted to be in his shoes on some of his trips down there, and I wouldn't have wanted to go through what he went through in that ambush in '67. Nope, I'm sure he may have had his own share of corruption, but I suppose that's what happens when you have to deal with snakes.
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Old 02-21-2013, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by jframe View Post
I enjoy all the stories about him, good and bad. I figure the guy was human, and not entirely perfect like many others made him out to be.

I know one thing for sure: there was a bunch of bad business at that Mississippi/Tennessee state line in McNairy and Alcorn counties all through the Forties, Fifties, Sixties, and probably most of the Seventies. Pusser may have took bribes, looked the other way, whatever. But I damn sure know that I wouldn't have wanted to be in his shoes on some of his trips down there, and I wouldn't have wanted to go through what he went through in that ambush in '67. Nope, I'm sure he may have had his own share of corruption, but I suppose that's what happens when you have to deal with snakes.
Very astute observations. From all that I have heard, there was less than legitimate dealings on all sides of the law during that time, and a whole lot of drinking and gambling, but as you said, no matter what, that ambush was just plain wrong.
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Old 03-14-2014, 12:40 PM
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But here are some more facts. My father was in the movie, his best friend was one of the deputies in the movie, best scene was when he beat one of his deputies in the front yard for being a RAT. The deputy with he dark sideburns was my fathers best friend. The House used in the movie is in the curve on HWY138 across form the CO-OP at Mercer. The reason the highways don't look familiar to some is in the movies is HWY 138 was used a lot, the Corvette wreck was filmed I believe on 138 on further down from the CO-OP. The funeral was filmed in Henderson. And yes the Pine Ridge club was used as mentioned.
All these places were used because McNairy county wanted no part of any movie being filmed there about him. I have lived here all my life, I lived right in the middle of where the movie was filmed and its neat. The old house where women could be bought (saying it nicely) still stands right past the Chester/McNairy line on hwy 45 3 stories tall and purpose built has balconies on all levels. I grew up in Madison County and I found 8 different still sites as a kid. All those big gallon glass jugs we busted on for months! whew worth some change today.
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