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For Fun: Wyatt Earp's Semiautomatic

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by StewRacing, Jul 10, 2011.

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  1. StewRacing

    StewRacing Member

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    If Wyatt Earp was alive today, what do you think he would carry? I kinda think he would be a 1911 man. For all we know he could have handled one, he died in 1929.

    On the other side, he was a law enforcement officer and they carry a lot of Glock's!

    In his time he most likely carried a Smith and Wesson .44 Schofield. So the M&P could be an option.

    I am just curious to what others think.

    I am voting 1911 in 10mm!
     
  2. Nushif

    Nushif Member

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    Did he not carry the standard gun of the time for LE types?
    Glock 17 it is.

    Sorry to bust the romantic notion. 8)
     
  3. Vonderek

    Vonderek Member

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    He liked to club miscreants on the head with the barrel of his revolver. I'm guessing he would want something with some length and weight at the front end. Maybe something w/4-6" barrel with full length underlug like a S&W 686.
     
  4. Lawdawg45

    Lawdawg45 Member

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    An interesting and fun question. He was known to carry a Schofield break top, but he also had a Colt Buntline (10 inch) at the OK corral, so his emphasis was more on accuracy than a fast draw. He was also known for not wearing a gun belt, often carrying his pistol in his rear waistband or overcoat pocket. As was stated, he opted for non lethal force many times as he clubbed suspects over the head, and he was never known to fight alone, he always had back up.

    If he were alive today, he'd probably be the Chief of a department, so I would put him in a suit coat with a S&W Scandium frame .357 ( 6 or 8 inch) carried in a shoulder holster. He'd also have a non lethal option of an ASP baton or Taser.:cool:

    LD45
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2011
  5. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    The Earp Buntline Special was very likely a myth perpetrated by Stuart lake, and also as likely abetted by Wyatt himself by telling Lake what he obviously wanted to hear. No documentation exists of Earp ever carrying a Buntline during the execution of his duties in Tombstone or anywhere else, and there isn't really a clear record of his ever having owned one, though he probably did.

    Why would he tote a sixgun that would be hard to manage in both carrying and in quick presentation in a time when men could lose their lives in fractions of seconds? I imagine that a 10 or 12-inch revolver would be a real drag to carry.

    Here's an excerpt from William Shillenberg's article:

    "The Myth of Wyatt Earp's Buntline Special."

    lthough Wyatt supposedly told Stuart Lake, "Mine was my favorite over any other gun." If the Buntlines "caused a lot of talk in Dodge" it certainly didn't impress Wyatt Earp enough to note the incident. John Flood admitted being confused after reading Lake's Buntline Special story in The Saturday Evening Post. Flood later remarked to John Gilchriese that he and Mr. Earp discussed weapons in detail many times but no mention was ever made of such a gun. [82] Also, the late Raymond Thorp told a story about Wyatt Earp showing him a revolver in the late fall of 1914. At that time, he said, Wyatt carried a Colt S.A.A. with a 5-1/2-inch barrel. Thorp claimed Earp told him, "I don't like a gun with a longer barrel. Sometimes an inch or two makes a difference when you want to jerk it quickly."
     
  6. Sig88

    Sig88 Member

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    I'd second the 1911 in 10mm.
     
  7. DWFan

    DWFan Member

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    If Wyatt Earp was alive today, he'd be Dirty Harry...
    a S&W .44 but more likely a 6" barrel
    Kurt Russell had a 10" barrel SAA at OK Corral, Wyatt Earp didn't
     
  8. Joe Demko

    Joe Demko Member

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    What I've read about Earp didn't really paint him as a gun enthusiast in the sense of a typical THR member. I got more of the impression of him regarding them as tools of the trade. If we want to go with the version of Earp that paints him as a lawman of sterling character, I guess he'd probably be carrying one or another of the typical cop guns of the present day. A Glock, an M&P, or a Sig are all great possibilities. If we want to go with the version of Earp that has him as a member of a gang at war with another gang, I guess he'd probably do like many criminals today and not have "a" gun. He'd buy something off the black market, complete his "business," and then ditch that gun.
     
  9. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    I also think that Wyatt and his contemporaries would opt for a big-bore revolver. There was a general mistrust of the "Newfangled Automatics" among the frontier pistoleros...which is often alluded to by Elmer Keith.

    Earp would certainly show an interest...but if he had to pick up a sidearm for serious purpose...he'd doubtless stick with his old reliable sixgun.
     
  10. Elm Creek Smith

    Elm Creek Smith Member

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    Smith & Wesson 681 .357 Magnum.

    Oh, wait! That's my duty gun!

    ECS
     
  11. easyg

    easyg Member

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    As much as I like rvolvers....no way would Wyatt carry one today.

    He would pobably carry a Glock 21.
     
  12. BossHogg

    BossHogg Member

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    ;) If he was alive today he'd be over 160 years old, so I'd say something lightweight.
     
  13. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    I think not, easyg. I betcha that if ol' Wyatt would wake up from his slumber, he'd go pick up a New Vaquero in .45 Colt. He'd really like that transfer bar and the ability to carry it with all six holes loaded.
     
  14. IlikeSA

    IlikeSA Member

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    If Earp were alive today, I can see a fancy engraved 1911 in his holster. I can also see him very disappointed with the shall issue laws, and would support the Brady center.
     
  15. Lawdawg45

    Lawdawg45 Member

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    "I also think that Wyatt and his contemporaries would opt for a big-bore revolver. There was a general mistrust of the "Newfangled Automatics" among the frontier pistoleros...which is often alluded to by Elmer Keith."

    I agree completely, especially since the 1911 was mainly designed as a military weapon to be carried in condition 3 until battle required it's use. I really could see him carrying a .357/.44/.45 Colt under a jacket coat. Is there any credible record of what he carried towards the end of his life (if anything)?

    LD45
     
  16. Joe Demko

    Joe Demko Member

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    If he was like a lot of folks during the early 20th century, he might have been carrying something we'd consider rather anemic, especially as he grew elderly and farther removed from the life of a lawman/wiseguy. Judging by the numbers of them that are still around, smallish revolvers in .32 and .38 seem to have sold very well during that time, as did .25, .32, and .38 autos.
     
  17. wheelgunslinger

    wheelgunslinger Member

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    Yeah, probably.

    But, it depends on what the question is. If the question is "If Wyatt were a lawman today..." then I'd have to say Glock.
     
  18. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

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    Last edited: Jul 11, 2011
  19. MICHAEL T

    MICHAEL T Member

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    If Earp was alive he be working for the Brady bunch trying to ban carry. they seem to be anti guns in the towns they worked 2nd didn't matter to them They wanted gun control. Sort of like those mayors .
     
  20. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    Quote:

    >If Earp was alive he be working for the Brady bunch trying to ban carry. they seem to be anti guns in the towns they worked 2nd didn't matter to them They wanted gun control. <

    The Earps weren't against guns and they had no anti-gun agenda. They were trying to keep a handle on cow towns where liquor flowed like water, and men settled their differences with guns about as often as not. The last thing you want in a saloon is an armed drunk who's just lost a month's wages at the Faro table. Gunfights on the street corners and in the saloons were generally bad for business...which is why they resorted to banging heads early on in a confrontation, before gunplay became a possibility. Nothin' personal. Just business.

    Whenever Wyatt and Virgil signed a contract to act as town marshals and police officers, they agreed to enforce town law...and town law forbade the open carrying of firearms within town limits. Sometimes, the statute was only in effect for Saturday night...or whenever the drovers rolled into town.

    The statute against public drunkeness was no more than a revenue generator. They sold the liquor, and then arrested and fined the people who got drunk on it, thus doubling or even tripling their take. Neat racket, methinks.
     
  21. Mikey Idaho

    Mikey Idaho Member

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    Well, considering the whole bad-a LE type I'd vote for a glock or m&p in 10mm or 45. Picturing him using a revolver in the present is holding into the old west image too much.
     
  22. Zombiphobia

    Zombiphobia Member

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    Yeah, they did support a lot of 'no carrying in town limits' crap didn't they?

    Yup, and that counts as 'gun control', which the brady bunch is all about. Wyatt himself clubbed quite a few people just for carrying, rather they were drunk or not, so the liqour factor isn't even relevant.
     
  23. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    Zombi...They signed a contract to enforce town laws. They didn't write the laws. They may not have necessarily agreed with the laws...but they did agree to enforce them. Many modern police officers may not agree with the laws...but they do have a duty to enforce them.

    Look at it in the same way as the issuance of permits in order to exercise a fundamentally and Constitutionally protected right...or facing criminal charges if you're caught.

    Should we have to pay a fee and beg permission in order to exercise a right? Once government is involved with licenscing and saying YEA or NAY to those who apply...it's no longer a right. It's a privelege, granted at the whim of government. Yet, everybody raised their voices and rejoiced when the "Shall Issue" legislation passed.

    Can we say: "Oh! The irony!"

    Earp and Company had no anti-gun agenda. In those days, guns were pretty much an accepted reality and it was assumed that nearly everybody had one somehwere. The town government officials were interested in keeping the money flowing...and shoot'em ups were simply bad for business.

    Again...The last thing you want in a saloon/gambling house is an armed drunk. If you had a cookout at your house, and one of your guests showed up armed and drunk...would you ask him to hand over his gun...or would you just shrug and keep cookin' the ribs?
     
  24. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    He mostly seems to have gone where the money and action were, whether that was Arizona or Alaska or California. In modern times that probably puts him doing lawman's work in Las Vegas. Maybe running mobsters out of town or knocking heads for the casinos, too. I don't think he cared much about the particular firearm he carried. In photos he clearly sees himself as a stylish gent of means, not a gunman.
     
  25. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    There ya go, Cosmo. Earp was down with makin' money, and...after a lot of reading the historical accounts...he wasn't all that particular about following legal or moral codes to do it. Short of murder for hire...he'd probably do pretty much whatever it took. Among his many business ventures were prostitution and gambling, and he wasn't above rigging the gambling in his favor.

    The Earps weren't lawmen as much as they were opportunists. If acting as law enforcement officers in a given town also offered the opportunity to make a fast buck...and there usually was...then that's what they did. If there was more money in running a Faro or poker game, and leaving the law enforcement duties to somebody else...that's what they did.

    One of Doc Holliday's scams in Colorado involved gold plating lead bars and selling them as gold. And where do you suppose he got the idea for that?
     
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