Q: Where Do You Keep A 7000-Gun Collection?

A: Quantico, Virginia. Ever wonder who has John Dillinger’s revolver? “Pretty Boy” Floyd’s 1911? It’s the boys at the FBI’s reference firearms collection. A storehouse of over seven thousand guns they use to help solve crimes referred to the feds. “Housed at the FBI Laboratory in Quantico, Virginia, the racks of weapons are not a musty exhibit of museum pieces, though some rare items would certainly qualify. Rather, the ever-expanding collection is a hands-on reference catalog for the Lab’s firearms examiners to study, take apart, reassemble, and test fire to support investigations. By maintaining a working library of virtually every handgun and rifle—along with a database of their unique toolmarks—examiners are able to identify and substantiate for investigators what weapons may have been used in criminal acts.”


  1. avatar Ralph says:

    Where did they get the 7000 trigger locks?

  2. avatar jwm says:

    7,000 guns, some of historic significent. Is it wrong that I just got a shiver down my spine?

  3. avatar Cameron S. says:

    Dream job.

    It might be difficult showing up to work with an erection every day though… I think I’d manage.

  4. avatar 1911A1 says:

    Ummm…My house?

    1. avatar Philthegardner says:

      NO! My House!

  5. avatar Tanner McClure says:

    In a 7000-gun safe. Preferably fire rated.

  6. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

    This is my drooly face.

  7. avatar Saul Feldstein says:

    Certainly they have plenty of room for many more when the next college punk uses a AR15 and they start going door to door to confiscate them.

  8. avatar Chas says:

    Doesn’t what he said about tool marks on shell casings and bullets kinda make micro-stamping unnecessary?

    1. avatar TTACer says:

      If either of those techniques weren’t utter bullshit it might.

  9. avatar Chris says:

    I don’t know what they did to the 1911 in that screencap, but I just threw up in my mouth a little.

    1. avatar Dark Alley Dan says:

      Yeah, looks like the Evil Welder paid a visit.

      I toured the Military Museum of Vytautas the Great in Kaunas, Lithuania a few years ago. They have a pretty decent small arms collection, and as the museum was open during the Soviet occupation, every single firearm in the place had a quarter-inch hole drilled through the chamber or barrel.

      Nickled Russian S&W’s, Model 95 Winchesters in 7.62x54R, Mausers up the wazoo, a Lithuanian High Power, even a Mondragon – all pointlessly ruined by some functionary.

      At least the Feebs generally keep them functional.

    2. avatar gloomhound says:

      I think that 1911 had been hit by return fire.

  10. avatar Ing says:

    Whew. For a minute there I thought you were asking me where I kept MY 7,000 guns. Which are all at the bottom of a lake (just give me a minute to decide which one I may or may not have gone boating on, and whose boat I borrowed and then sank with the weight of my enormous arsenal).

    Ha ha, just kidding. I only wish I had 7,000 guns. Ha ha, just kidding. I hate guns, and all the comments I’ve posted here over the last year have been an elaborate ruse. I’m collecting information on all of you! Ha ha, just kidding. Uh…guys?

    1. avatar jwm says:

      When you find yourself in a hole, Ing, stop digging. Myself, I always carry a telescoping ladder in my back pocket.

  11. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    The Buffalo Bill Museum in Cody probably has more guns as for total numbers, but not as widely varied.

    1. avatar jwm says:

      And if I ever get to Wyoming I’m going to stop in there. I really have a liking for the frontier days.

      1. avatar Backyardsniper says:

        I went there this summer, and holy crap I want to live in that museum, the stuff they have is absolutely incredible.

      2. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

        They have more than “frontier” weapons on display.

        They also have displays of the machinery used to make guns. The display on the 1903 Springfield should give people a good idea what it takes to make bolt guns in quantity.

        Pay special attention to the barrel straightening rig.

  12. avatar LAS says:

    Right next to my 2B rounds of ammo… Oh wait, that’s the DHS, never mind.

  13. avatar Chip says:

    Do they give tours?

    1. avatar You asked for it says:

      I was thinking the same thing. I am heading there in May, and it seems like a pretty cool place to see.

  14. avatar William Burke says:

    Maybe it’s ONE BIG trigger lock! Speaking of Dillinger, there was a mortuary museum in DC (it may still be there) that had (what was said to be) Dilenger’s unit, pickled in a jar.

  15. avatar Chris Dumm says:

    I took the public tour of the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building in DC 25 years ago. Back then in the Reagan years they even put on a live-fire SMG shoot for tourists at their indoor range. Part of the tour took you past rack after rack of rare and mundane firearms, all behind glass of course.

    I guess they moved the collection to Quantico. No more tours, I suppose.

    1. avatar JaxD says:

      I took the same tour as a nyc public school student in the late ’70s. I remember that rack. But seeing the Thompson demo was about as cool a thing as this 5th grader could stand. Too bad todays kids can’t even imagine a field trip like that.

  16. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

    “Where do you keep a 7000 gun collection?”

    Kinda reminds me of the old joke, “There’s a 500 lb gorilla in your living room, where does he sit?”

    1. avatar JC79 says:

      Where ever he wants! (PG Version)

  17. avatar Paul53 says:

    Mental note: call FBI, ask to borrow guns.

  18. avatar Ken says:

    Got included on a private tour of the gun vault at the Smithsonian’s Museum of American History a few years back. Racks and racks, drawers and drawers of firearms history, including some one-of-a-kind patent models from the time when working models were required for issuance of a patent. Fascinating as well as woody inducing. Countless drawers of Colt Single Action Army pistols alone.

  19. avatar gabba says:

    usually when you crib content from reddit it’s within a few days. what’s with the 2 week delay on this one?

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      Easy, tiger. This video’s been making the rounds. This is the third or fourth place I’ve seen it in the last couple weeks, and it’s not like the text underneath it is the product of original thought on reddit. It’s a quote from the story at fbi.gov.

  20. avatar g says:

    Sounds better than a museum since all the firearms are in working order!

    I bet they also keep a significant store of ammo, common and obscure, on hand too.

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