The L.C. Smith Collectors Association
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Re: Need Help W/information from 1895 Smith Catalog
The following may add more heat than light, but I offer it for what it is worth. I have an undated Hunter Arms pocket catalog which depicts "... each of the different grades of L.C. SMITH GUNS; also a concise description of them without going into details." The catalog describes a Pigeon Gun as having "NITRO OR CROWN STEEL BARRELS." It also describes the engraving as "... having a pigeon in full flight on one lock-plate and a blue rock on the other." It is priced at $125.00, or $150.00 with automatic ejectors. Although the catalog itself is undated, the cover letter accompanying it is dated September, 1898, and the envelope is similarly postmarked. For the reasons which follow, however, I think an argument can be made that the catalog was printed earlier than 1898. The catalog depicts guns in Quality A-3 through Quality No. 0. (1) The fact that the catalog does not reference a No. 00 gun suggests that it was printed earlier than 1898. (2) The fact that the catalog does reference a No. 0 gun suggests that it could have been printed as early as 1894. (3) I understand that the "Quality" designation was dropped in the records and replaced with the simple numerical designation around 1896. The catalog uses the "Quality" designation suggesting it was printed in 1896 or earlier. I realize that this is supposition and that the print date of a catalog is not necessarily determinative of exactly when some feature actually appeared on a gun in any event. Nonetheless it does offer additional information for consideration. I will send photos to Gary and Drew for what they are worth.