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Remington Shotshell (courtesy The Truth About Guns)

Aside from his brothers, the Holocaust wiped out my father’s side of the family. He arrived in New York City with a suitcase and . . . that’s it. Over the next six decades he owned one firearm: a Winchester side-by-side shotgun. It was stolen during a burglary and never replaced. Mom was a South African immigrant and as anti-gun as you wanna be (or not). So the only gun-related family relic I own is shown above: a box of Remington shotgun shells. Which means that the most important gun in my collection is the one I wear on my hip. But I bet some of you have family heirlooms that you treasure, or a firearm you purchased that has enormous sentimental value. Spill. What’s the most important – in terms of sentimentality – gun in your collection?

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  1. Well I only own the one. 🙂 And no heirloms to speak of gunwise. I got some cool lighters from my Grandpa though. Vietnam war stuff. Pretty awesome.

      • Yeah, low-hanging fruit is never the sweetest, but it’s always what I reach for first.

        Jokes aside, my most treasured heirloom piece is a ’68 FN Browning A-5 in 20ga. I’ve shot a lot of newer and more expensive shotguns, but nothing better by any real measure.

        • Awesome, those A-5’s in 20ga are incredibly smooth. I have my Grandpa’s 1939 A-5 (12Ga) that I will never, ever part with.

        • No, that Nina is a good kid though, she has middle management written all over her, she’s going places.

        • For redacted Release:

          Nina redacted is now redacted redacted at redacted until redacted redacted redacted. Please redacted redacted redacted 2 pm redacted redacted redacted banana.

        • Not that stupid banana thing again…

          Phil still has bruises from the last time, I never was able to get the smell out of my jacket, and I don’t think that cat is ever going to be the same…

    • They doing great, thanks for asking! BTW, just a friendly reminder: your anniversary is coming up next week and I don’t think your wife wants the pink roses again. She commented last week to her friend Mary on Skype that she thought fire-and-ice roses looked nice. Try some of those. Oh, your son’s grades in algebra aren’t that great, so don’t be surprised when he brings home the report card. I don’t think another grounding will help. Maybe some afterschool tutoring? Just a suggestion….

        • Frank’s doing fine. We gotta do something about that Executive Order mandating all FTE hired must be named Frank. Obama’s taking the EO’s a little too far… again.

        • at least there’s no more personal responsibility like my last job, i just say frank did it

      • It still itches a little, but what are you gonna do, right?

        BTW, I got some note on my desk that I think was for you, it says,” Dr. Henderson called, the penile implants have come in and are ready for installation.”

        Congrats man, that Obamacare is really something, huh?

        • jwm, thanks ill look into it obamacares paying for it and since im in government i have no deductible

        • I was going to get the hydraulic ones, but the wife kept saying, “I’m a woman, not a Kawasaki…”

          So, what are you going to do? But, I ended up with the TY987s, you know the natural gas operated ones… I love it, but I can taste apricot jelly every time I stand up now, it’s the strangest thing.

        • the TY987s were the first ones i looked at, the apricot taste is a side effect but i think it would be a plus

    • Same here. I have my grandfather’s .410 single shot Mossberg and Sons. Insurance company valued it at $80 but it is priceless in my family.

      • There are three prices attached to any firearm.
        1.) The price the insurance company is willing to pay for it when you’re in a bind and have to bend over and take it. (The sell it to a pawn shop and take the fiscal hit value)
        2.) The price someone else is willing to pay for it. (fair market value)
        3.) The price that would persuade you to part with it.

    • My dad’s gone that’s the exact same way for him.
      For me, its probably my M1 carbine. I can’t help but feel close to whatever poor grunt humped that thing across the pacific/Europe, before getting red-banded and put in the home guard somewhere.

  2. An old Western Field Bolt Action that has been passed down for two generations on my dad’s side of the family. I really look forward to the day I can pass it on to my son.

    • That definitely wouldn’t be a first year A5, but the mid 50s guns were arguably some of the best A5s FN produced.

    • Oh man talking about M1911s make my heart flutter. That old mule leg is pretty sweet too.

      I own somewhere around 60 guns, but should the house catch fire the only ones I’d walk through fire for would be:

      1. My great x3 grandfather’s 1st generation colt SAA artillery model, that he used as a Texas Ranger (D company, frontier battalion), in the indian wars in 1870-71, and pacifying the county in which I reside now (San saba county, Texas). I would also grab the sword he used as a captain of K Co., 9th Texas volunteer infantry, C.S.A. That sword was made in a yankee armory during the war, and somehow made its way into my ancestor’s hands, and eventually into my safe today.

      2. My dad’s custom Ruger M77 .270. Old Black has killed more deer that most people will even lay eyes on, and is one of the fastest and most accurate rifles to ever grace human hands.

      3. My Great grandfather’s and my first rifle, a Remington improved model 6 takedown.

      And if I have the spare hands, my AR-15 and my M1A, because the hordes won’t fight themselves.

  3. I am sorry I am not sentimental about guns (they are tools with a value), and I’m not going to “spill”. For gosh sakes grow a pair… HA HA. However my dad had collected guns that were stolen, never got the ones he still had because of divorce and remarrying. BUT I do enjoy my Glock 26 Gen4, my Ruger MkIII 22 pistol and for deep conceal carry Kahr CM9….

  4. I received a few firearms from my father. My parents were of the type that flipped full retard when they had kids though so I didnt even know my father had these guns until I came home from college one weekend and they were sitting neglected on a table with a bunch of junk being cleaned out of the garage.

    I took them home and repaired what I could and what I couldnt repair sort of became decorative. Try as I might I cannot connect any sentiment to them or even connect them with my father or any of that typical “quality time” stuff so often associated with a father a son and the outdoors, hunting, shooting, etc… They just take up room in my safe and if it werent for a standing order of mine to never sell a firearm they would already be sold.

    So the lesson here is a gun is a terrible thing to waste. I just get annoyed when I think of all the times growing up I expressed an interest in shooting and was berated with the typical onslaught of “dangerous!” and “no child of mine!” all the while the answer to getting the kid to bond with the dad was rusting away up in the leaky garage.

    So maybe there is some sentiment attached to them. Bitter, resentful sentiment.

    • Forgive Shire-man. For you.
      He loved you enough to protect you from what he thought most dangerous.
      Even if he was wrong about the guns.

      • It’s been a long time and all is forgiven. Just sucks to think about what could have been sometimes. Especially when it was there all along right under my nose.

    • As a father in the middle of a divorce battle trying to not lose my ability to father my children your post really touched me. So many people do not know what is really important.

    • Shire-man,

      My Dad went full retard after a career in the Army. Mine was a childhood sans guns. As an adult, I purchased a CMP M1 Garand which Dad loves. I pretend it is his gift to me. Really the gun just reminds me of all the stories he’s told me. Plus I have the added benefit of watching him drill with it. Right Shoulder!

  5. My first lever-action – a Winchester 94 Trapper in .357 Magnum. Horrible sights? Check. Horrible trigger? Yup. But I can shoot that rifle better than just about anything else in the collection. It just fits me right.

    • I feel the same way about the Winchester 190 that I bought from money earned by mowing yards when I was 9. I shoot that rifle better than any other I own. Not sure which was more dangerous – a 9 year old with a rifle or a 9 year old mowing lawns without any glasses hearing protection and with a 70’s vintage mower. Those were the days.

  6. Single shot 12 gauge. Dad fired one round through it on New Year’s eve 1971. I talked him into giving it to me. I got it all cleaned up so he could put the second round through it exactly 40 years later.

    BTW, if you’re going to let a gun sit in a closet for forty years, at least clean the damn cosmoline out of it, thanks….

  7. The family heirloom we have is a 1937 Krieghoff Luger that belong to my Grandmothers’ father. He was a Stuka pilot in the Luftwaffe but was shot down over the Russian front and was listed MIA / KIA. We have the full matching dress uniform to go with it, along with so much other priceless Nazi memorabilia and stamps and what have you. I’m probably going to be submitting most of it for archiving however, as I dont really have the means to store it long term and I wont have children to give it to.

    • That’s a really nice pistol. My Grandfather (Mother’s side) brought back a P08 from the war, it was unfortunately stolen from my uncle during a move. I’m very jealous. Nice history too. My wife is German and both of her grandfathers served, the only thing she inherited was a Totenkopf ring with her grandfather’s name inscribed in it. She hates it, I had to convince her of it’s value so she didn’t throw it away.

      • Alot of people tossed away alot of that memorabilia but, as it is, you can’t really blame them.

        As far as I know, coming back to the pistol, the Krieghoff’s are some of the most rare of the Lugers it seems lol. My Grandfather met my grandmother in Germany (He was a Linguist at the time) and things just kinda went from there. He liked the pistol and brought it back with him somewhere in the 50’s and just held onto it since and took good care of it. Was always fascinated with everything German made lol. It’s been given to me already since I’m sort of the expert on firearms in the family, but I wont really have a future generation to pass it on to so I’m going to have to start thinking what I wanna do with it in the next 10-15 years.

        • A Krieghof Luger in excellent condition will easily fetch between $8-20k at auction. You’ve got a treasure there man. Keep it secret, keep it safe!

    • Please don’t give it to a museum.

      Sell or auction to a collector. His history will have a better chance of living on in the hands of a private collector, than as a catalog number in a museum.

      • Luger isn’t going anywhere. Some of the stamps I have and some of the other knickknacks and propaganda books and such can go there though. They’ll be able to better preserve fabrics and things like that than I ever could.

  8. Hard to pick a favorite… They are all so cool. I would have to say it’s the 1918 DWM P08 (commonly referred to as a Luger). I wanted to own one since I was a kid, and finally found one in good condition that I could afford. The workmanship is amazing. Every part fits perfectly with the next. It’s more like a fine watch than a firearm.

  9. My grandfather’s 1946 L.C. Smith 20 ga shotgun. Still use it from time to time to take dove. It was my grandfather’s everyday field gun and probably has over 100,000 shells through it. Great gun.

  10. I own three guns with sentimental value.

    1. A Savage .410 single shot I got for Christmas when I was 13.
    2. A Remington 870 20 guage I got for Christmas when I was 16.
    (Mom and Dad are gone so my only firearm link to them)
    3. A Korean War vintage M1 Garand I got from CMP.
    (I am honored to own a weapon use in the defense of our Nation).

    I have NEVER sold any of my guns but those three will be mine until I die.

    • Agreed, why would you sell a gun if you still had a dollar in you pocket.

      Don’t say “to buy a different one”, because if you made a mistake buying the one you want to sell, you are just as likely to make two more mistakes. When it comes to to gun mistakes, they are the easiest mistakes to live with.

  11. The guns I learned to shoot with my dads single six and a BLR .22lr. My dad passed away when I was 7. great times learning to shoot whit him. He was a true cowboy.

  12. I would have to say the Mossy 500 12ga pump. Great for home defense and my wife and kids know how to use it when I’m away. Great home defense gun, easy to use and I don’t know of anyone that hears that distint sound that would want to challenge the business end of a 12ga.

    • you took the right approach to answering this question. most people answered with their most sentimental gun, you said the one that will benefit you the most… thus most important.

  13. A late 1800s LC Smith SxS damascus barrel shotgun which belonged to my great grandpa. He shot many a pheasant and duck with it back on our old family farmland, which is now all gone. Apparently my grandpa continued using it for years with modern smokeless shells – personally I don’t intend to chance that. I’ve never shot it, but it’s kept clean and oiled. Maybe some day I’ll get some black powder shells for it, but no hurry.

    My dad’s BSA CF2 .270 is my main hunting rifle now. When he’s gone, that’s how I can always take a part of him hunting with me.

    • you can get inserts that will let you shoot modern 20 ga shells safely in it. they are about as effective as the old BP 12’s were anyway.

  14. well, one gun own own is go-to for feeding my family, one primary go-to for protecting them. If someone tells me whether feeding or protecting them is more important, I can answer this.

    • Feeding is definitely more important. Nothing to defend if you’re starving to death. And any gun that works for hunting can also work for defense in a pinch.

  15. 1954 (I think) Belgian Browning A5 lightweight. My dad’s shotgun my mom bought him before I was born.

    Otherwise, it’s my twin Five-seveNs. :>)

    • I’ve got a mixed opinion of the Five-seveN. Everything I’ve heard about it says it’s fun and easy to shoot, and the 20 round mag doesn’t hurt matters at all… but something about a 5.7mm bullet out of a case that looks like an especially angry center-fire cousin to the .22 mag… well, I’m not sure I trust it to be more than a way to burn time and money in exchange for fun.

      then again, with the light recoil and voluminous Pelosi-panicking magazine, you can always just shoot a lot in a very shot time. But why two of them? New York Reloads?

  16. Glock 19 Gen 3. My first gun that started all for me.

    I’m the only “pro-gun” person in my family. Everyone else is neutral at best. So I received no heirloom to speak of, and I doubt I’d have a recipient for mine.

  17. My grandfathers pre ww2 High Standard .22lr. I fire a mag through it every year on his birthday. He was and still is the smartest man that I have ever met. His old buck knife is part of my EDC setup and I also have his single shot .410. The pistol is beat to hell and has very little blueing left on it. Although it is rather rare, it is by far the epitome of ”From my cold dead hands” within my collection.

  18. My father’s pre-64 Model 70, .30-06 with a Weaver 4X. It’s a tack driver, and accounted for many a mule deer, a couple of antelope and a moose or two.

    • Same! With the bayonet? Mine looks like it saw heavy service. Also has some strange roman numerals hand carved into the stock

  19. An old break open single shot that belonged to my father-in-laws father before he went to ww2, some nazi money and his letters to his wife. Priceless!! When my grandfather passed away, we came home from the funeral to find most of his stuff looted from his “family”. The 30-30 he taught me with and was supposed to go to me was gone.

  20. I have two. One is a 410 Remington 870 I got 16 years ago as a birthday(8th) present and my first gun.
    Another is a double barrel Stevens 511 I bought for 50 bucks covered in multiple layers of spray paint. After tons of hours and lots of chemicals I have reblued and restored it

  21. My PawPaw’s Savage Model 340 (bolt-action) in 30-30 Win. with Weaver 4X. (early 1950’s vintage). It has put a lot of deer on the table and continues to do so.

  22. Either the Ted Williams (yes, that one) Model 200 12 Gauge pump that is marked “Sears and Roebuck” from probably 50 years ago.


    My first AR-15 (pistol waiting on eform1 to come back) that I built from a pile of parts into a functioning rifle.

    The most important non-firearm is the daisy BB rifle my brother (RIP) gave me on my 10th birthday.

    • I also have a Ted Williams Sear & Roebuck pump shotgun. Mine is a 20 ga with the adjustable Polychoke in the muzzle. It’s not my favorite, but it’s near the top of the list. It was my second shotgun. I believe mine was actually manfactured by Winchester.

  23. A Rossi model 62. I asked for a Daisy BB gun when I was 8. Dad said the Daisy would teach me bad habits and the .22 would teach me to respect firearms.

  24. I have my great great grandfathers 1894 Winchester 30-30 which is a dream to shoot…been passed down to every son each generation and I hope to pass it to my son one day 🙂

  25. My grandfather was a paranoid prepper when they were called “children of the Depression.” He was known to have built secret compartments around his house, so after his funeral, my cousin and I (the two oldest) searched the house and found cash, stock certificates, bonds, titles and guns — lots of em — hidden around the house. His ’30-.06 that he used to hunt boar was in a hollowed out rafter. In the bedroom under the closet floor (unbeknownst to my grandma) were three handguns — a Ruger Standard, probably the .38 sp revolver he used to fire in the air on New Years Eve and one other. We also uncovered some 50 cal shells — no idea what those were for — and a mint condition M-1911 wrapped in plastic, probably a WW2 issue he “liberated” from Pearl Harbor’s armory (where he worked) in the chaotic days after the attack — or possibly the one he carried as a National Guardsman.

    While my grandfather was a hunter and shooter, he did not pass on his appreciation of guns to his three sons. My father let his youngest brother sell the lot of them for $240. (That figure comes from the $80 my uncle gave my dad, claiming it was his share. I don’t think any of my cousins read TTAG, but in the interest of family harmony, I won’t say what I think of that claim.) This was 1986, I was in high school and no one in my family knew guns or was interested in my grandfather’s impressive cache. That house, where I spent summers in Honolulu, sold last year when my uncle died. Things are things, but it feels odd to have nothing physical from that generation. One of those guns would have been nice.

  26. I only don’t have the heirloom that got away. My dad sold his 357 Python(tuned trigger, custom walnut grips, 4 & 6″ barrells) for $175. This was decades ago & I wasn’t into guns. You don’t know how I wish I had that. Randy

  27. My most “valuable” (sentimental value) is the 100-year-old Marlin No. 29 that belonged to my great-great-aunt (my maternal grandfather’s mother’s sister). Acquired it from my mother a few years ago. Shoots great – I can get 1/2″ groups at 50 feet with really crappy, low-velocity ammo. It was the first firearm my oldest son fired – after I drew what the sight picture should look like, he hit a 4″ target at 50 feet 8 times out of 9.

    The most “valuable” (actual day-to-day importance) is the Glock 27 on my hip.

  28. My Walther PPQ is one I’ll never get rid of. It was the gun I chose when I made the decision to concealed carry. My stepdad has the first gun I ever owned. A New England single shot 20 gauge. I think he’s still got it which reminds that I need to see if I can get it back.

    The one I wish I still had was my Winchester pump 12 gauge I got when I was 15. I killed my first deer with it and then I sold it when I was about 20.

  29. Right now, my CZ75 as it’s the only gun I own.

    Eventually though, my dad’s Remington 700 rifle…though I’m in no hurry to collect it.

  30. My father’s Winchester Model 22 side by side that he got when he was 12, and gave me when I was in my 20s. Still his gun in my heart. It’s well trained and rarely misses, except for those supersonic doves.

  31. I don’t have any family heirlooms, and have been reworking (upgrading) my lineup of carry guns so my favorites are actually quite new (Glock 20 and Glock 42). However, I do have some emotion regarding my Mosin-Nagant. Not because of anything I’ve done with it, or how long I’ve had it, or even because it’s a particularly good gun. In fact, it could easily be replaced with one of the millions of other Mosins out there and I wouldn’t be bothered.

    That gun matters to me because of what it represents. It was made in ’44, and has the hammer and sickle on it. My ancestors fled from men carrying these when they crushed Hungary in 1956. Those guns were among the weapons of a totalitarian ideology that promised that it would rule the world. Today, they can be bought cheaply by the boxful. The country my family took refuge in, with its culture and system of government, triumphed.

    • I adore my Nagant’s. Bought from Bud’s what ended up being a completely matched numbers (buttplate, bolt, receiver!) hex model from 1923 that shoots awesome. Bought a Boyd stock for it at the same time but it was just too perfect to mess with so I bought a (totally trashed stock but pristine bore) T53 Nagant that I wouldn’t feel bad modding. An FDE duracoat and a free floated Boyd stock later its my best shooting gun. Cheep to shoot, I just love working the bolt, and the iron sights are spot on. I shoot my AR’s out of obligation, but I love shooting my Nagant.

  32. I have two. First is my Mossberg 142-A bolt .22LR bolt action. It was my grandfather’s in the fifties and then given to my dad in the 90s. We never shot it together but after I joined the military my dad gave it to me because he thought I might get some use from it and appreciate it more than anyone else in the family. Second is my 686. My ex and I purchased one and she took it in the divorce. I loved that gun so I had to replace it and now no one will ever take it from me. I believe I might even be buried with it.

  33. A Winchester bolt action .22 bought new by my great grandfather. Helped keep his stew pot full during the Great Depression, and the first firearm shot by generations of my family (including my daughters).

  34. I inherited about 9 when my father died. Of those, the two that mean the most are the Colt 1911 and Colt 1903, both of which my grandfather carried with him through the second world war, including the battle of the buldge.

  35. For sure the .22 WRF Winchester 1890 from my grandpa. My favorite part is that it’s been passed to the oldest son for the last 90 years or so, but Gramps skipped his kids and gave it straight to me as he thought his eldest would get rid of it.

  36. After many years living in Illinois and going through the FOID card bs and gross lack of convenient shooting ranges, my dad celebrated moving to a 2a-friendly state by purchasing a kimber CDP. I lusted over that pistol for years. My parents surprised me with an identical model as a college graduation gift, engraved with my name across the slide. 2yrs later, my fathers pistol was stolen. He was piiiissed. The while family chipped in and got him a replacement for Christmas, this time with his name across the slide. We both treasure those pistols far above all other guns in the family. Neither of us are marksmen, but boy do we shoot those pistols well.

  37. Most treasured firearm(s) for me come down to:
    1939 Remington Model 32 Tournament Grade 12 gauge O/U Trap shotgun that was my grandfather’s
    A pre-69 pre-letter serial number Colt Python that my grandfather gave to my mother on her 30th birthday
    Series 70 Colt Government Model – the very first 1911 and the first pistol that I purchased

  38. I have a double barrel, breach loading, double trigger/hammer 12 gauge with a manufacturing date of 1870(-ish).. It was my maternal great grandfathers, and then my grandfathers, and then my father (shortly after he married my mom) took it and smacked it against a tree as he had missed a shot (not the greatest anger management in the world)… My mom and him divorced when I was 3 and the gun disappeared for years until my maternal grandmother handed it to me… It is in horrible shape (the breach is loose, the stock is cracked, etc) so I’ve never shot it (and probably never will) but it is my most valuable gun, even if to most it would be junk….

    As an aside, anyone know how I could identify the manufacturer, or anything else about the gun?

    • Google any markings on it, get creative with your descriptions. Post pictures in a forum frequented by double barrel and antique lovers. Or have it repaired by a gunsmith who specializes on old firearms who might recognize it. Or perhaps have it appraised by someone who specializes in antique firearms a-la Antiques Roadshow.

  39. My most important gun is one I no longer own.

    It is my wife’s, and the gun that got her into the shooting sports. And, coincidentally, the reason I have to hide the .45ACP…

  40. That is just too tough to say I have guns that belonged to both parents (and heavily used by both), all four grand parents(ditto), 6 of my 8 great grandparents, and one gun that belonged to a great great great grandfather in the 1700s.

    They range from that flintlock right up to a pistol my dad bought the year before he died and never got to shoot. A colt .45 SAA his dad bought from Bannermans in about 1906 that was sold to the US Army in 1876, etcetera etcetera more than 30 of my guns have family history. Like my Mother’s 20ga Winchester model 21 upland bird hunting shotgun bought the year I was born 1948…
    How do you select a favorite out of a collection as varied as this?

  41. A .32 Colt revolver from my grandpa. Issued to him during WWII where he patrolled the US’s Southern border, it’s in great shape all in all.

  42. there’s a couple – unfortunately i haven’t been able to shoot all of them yet.

    my dad recently gave me my grandpa’s M1 Carbine, i still have to clean it and take it to the range.

    the two drillings i have – beautiful firearms and one’s black powder 🙂

    the Steyr M95 from 1903 – that’s my hunting rifle right now

  43. A Springfield Armory USGI 1911 my dad gifted me when I was 18. It’s not super rare or anything but it’s one I’ll always keep and never sell.

    First gun I ever owned.

    I returned the favor just recently by gifting him a S&W Model 10. It’s the first gun he’s ever owned.

  44. I have gotten a lot of guns from relatives over the years but my most cherished is a Smith and Wesson registered .357 magnum from the 1930’s that I inherited from my grandfather. It was the first revolver that I ever shot.

  45. My grandad’s Colt 1903 Hammerless. He bought it new when he was 18 and its one of the finest shooting pistols I’ve ever shot. I will never get rid of it.

    • I, too, have my grandfather’s 1903 Colt. He bought it shortly after returning home from France after serving during WWI. I still shoot it occasionally. Lovely pistol.

  46. My Father-in-Law purchased a Golden Boy for my first son when he was born. When my second son was born, he purchased a second Golden Boy. I think I need to have more sons.

  47. A side by side Damascus barreled 12 gauge of my great grandfather. Stopped shooting it when I was 14 because I was told it was going to be dangerous, even with light loads. There are a couple nonfunctioning 10 gauges that my Great Grandfather owned. Legend has it he would prop himself against a tree to shoot things because he was such a small statured man.

  48. No heirlooms here but I have to go with my 1911 not just because I am a fanboy or because it’s the first one I owned but because it is the first handgun that I ever shot.

  49. An Ithaca single shot 20 ga (lever opening) that my ole man bought me when I was 15. I spent the best part of my mid teens to early 20’s humping that thing around the mountains of NE PA, killing untold numbers of squirrels, rabbits, grouse and a handful of game land stocked pheasants.

    He probably bought it (from a neighbor who didn’t hunt anymore) for me for Christmas for probably 100 bucks or less. He made me sign a contract that had the 4 rules on them that stated I would learn and always abide by them.

    It’s rust speckled from not being cleaned well enough, the front sight broke off when a friend bumped it over from leaning against the wall when we were about to head out for a hunt and it’s probably worth less than half of what he got it for nearly 20 yrs ago, but I’ll never sell it, and God willing, my son will shoot his first squirrel with it as well.

  50. When I was a wee lad, my father took me to the range and handed me my first gun, a Marlin Model 60 .22LR. He taught me how to shoot and how to respect a firearm with that rifle. My dad and I were never really close except for a handful of bonding moments. All through high school, college and my first decade as a family man I never had a firearm in the house. Not because of any aversion to it, but it just wasn’t a “priority” for me. I few years ago I decided to re-embrace my 2A right and have since acquired my CCW began to walk the path and take responsibility for my family’s safety. Recently I needed a .22 rifle to qualify at I local range and asked my dad to loan me his Ruger. He flatly said no, ha. Then came out of his room with my old Marlin. The moment I held it again a great forgotten moment came back to me in perfect clarity. Amazingly, an hours effort of cleaning and a little oil brought it back to nearly pristine condition. This will be the rifle my kids learn on (this spring!) and I hope to add to the legacy I almost lost.

  51. the S&W M&P 15-22. I teach at least 10 people a year how to handle firearms with that gun. My new goal this year is 3 new NRA members (or SAF)

  52. I envy you guys who have history with guns. my family doesn’t like guns so I was/am “shielded” from them. There is supposed to be a rifle in the attic of the house in the old country. It belonged to my great-grandfather who fought in WW1. I wonder what rifle it is since I have never seen it (never went into the attic of that house). He was in the Austro-Hungarian army so I wonder what rifle it is. Anyone got a clue?

        • You got me Jared, actually you are the only one I know who got that about my handle(name)on the internet. Kudos to you.

          Reason I gave a vague description is because I that’s all I have.

          I will have to check out the attic one day, won’t be easy. Psychological reasons and stuff, even worse it might not even be there. If it is there, what should I do with it? Keep it as is, or refinish the stock and reblue the metal?

        • Get it checked out by a gunsmith, first thing. It might not be safe to shoot. You might consider leaving it as is just for historical reasons depending on condition.

  53. My .45 I carry daily.
    Real Sentimental though:
    1. 1926 Stevens Crackshot Mod26 .22 I learned to shoot with around 5 or 6 yrs old.
    Given to me when Granpa passed in 1996.

    2. 1910/14 Mauser 6.35mm Pocket Pistol found in a gun shop w/original nickel played mag for $175.(all matched number/70% finish left).

    3. 1924 Moisin Nagant Sniper Rifle(hex receiver/matched #’s/original scope and mount) $200 at a pawn shop.

    4. Pre 1968 Springfield Pump 410 shotgun, all original, given to me by a neighbor 8 days before he passed away.

  54. Well, my ACR was my “white whale.” I read about the Masada when I was in Iraq and glared at my issued M16. It took a trip to Afghanistan to get it but I finally did, I rule.

    I guess they’re all special. My Kimber SIS is probably going to go to my kid when he graduates college/basic/ranger/med school or whatever significant moment he might have. I’ve had some work done to it to personalize it. In retrospect, however, I would have gone with a more basic model than the SIS model. I was new to the gun buying thing and fell for the Guns&Ammo magazine article.

  55. My Sig Sauer P226 9mm, one of two guns I used the first time I ever shot with my father. Technically the first gun I ever shot with him was an H&K USP, but the trip to the range was to fire a few guns to decide which one from his collection he would give me and the Sig won out over the H&K.

    The first gun he gave me was a Stoeger Condor 20ga, but that doesn’t have the sentimental value of the Sig.

  56. 32 Savage – was my grandfather’s and the first pistol I ever shot
    H&R single shot 410 – got at 9 yrs old as gift for getting 98% on hunter saftey test
    sporterized 30-40 Krag – my granddad’s and shot my 1st elk with it
    I doubt I could sell any of these for more than $200, but no matter, will keep them and give to my son someday

  57. Mine would probably be an old S&W Model 36 that I traded an old motorcycle for. I’m looking forward to the day I can teach my son how to shoot. Hopefully someday he will value my collection as much as, if not, more than I do now.

  58. My grandpa’s old three screw Blackhawk in .45 Colt, gramps has been gone for years but I still have his old six-shooter to remember him by

  59. My dad’s Colt Gold Cup. It’s the pistol that he used to teach me how to shoot a handgun more than 30 years ago. The bluing is worn thin, no part of it has not been modified, and it requires a steady diet of hand loaded semi-wadcutters to really fall within its sweet spot. Every time I shoot it, it feels like a reunion with an old friend.

  60. My Smith and Wesson Model 66 4inch. It was the first handgun I bought. Sometimes it replaces my glock 22 as my duty gun. I’ll never get rid of ole Smitty.

  61. My Pop’s Colt 1911 Government Model issued to him by General Westmoreland that he took and used in Vietnam when he was a Green Beret.

  62. My most emotionally important firearm is my great-great grandfather’s breach loading single shot 12 ga, made in the late 1870’s. It was passed to his son, and then to my grandfather, then to my mom, and now to me. It’s had the stock shortened and then a piece of wood nailed to the end to lengthen it again. There is some electrical tape wrapped around it, and some other “customization”, but it fed my ancestors thru several generations. It was my grandfather’s “go to” gun for any hunting he did. Next would be my Ruger Single Six revolver, it was my first handgun. I couldn’t even guess how many thousands of rounds that has shot. Next would be the Marlin .22LR lever action my dad recently gave me. I’ve wanted one for 40 years, and he gave me his last summer.

  63. I’d like to get a glimpse at my Grandfather’s old collection, but my Uncle took it and we’re not on good terms.

    But to answer the question, my Marlin 336 30-30, nothing special about it, but Isaved up and bought it used. It’s not pretty, but it’s mine dammit.

  64. For all around, had to grab one and run, my AR 15 is it’s my workhorse, along with my Glock 17

    For sentimental value, a marlin 336 that belonged to my cousin who perished in a USAF plane collision. I also have 3 .22 rifles that belonged to my grandfathers and great uncle who stormed the beaches of Normandy. A 1970s ruger single six that belonged to my grandfather is pretty dear to my heart as well

  65. The Winchester Model 12 my daddy bought when I was 1 year old. I passed the Browning Breakdown .22 that was my great grandmother’s gun to my daughter.

  66. Grandfather’s Iver Johnson Target Sealed Eight .22, Father’s U.S. Revolver .32 Short break-top, Father-in-law’s 870 Magnum Express in 12 ga we call The Beast, my wife’s Grandfather’s Sears and Roebuck .22 pellet rifle. One I plan on passing on is my matte stainless CZ75.

  67. I wish i had my grandmas Winchester 25-35 lever action that she had that disappeared at some point as well as the M3 Grease Gun that my Grandpa tried to bring back in his footlocker, but the Army found it and took it back. The only one that I have are actually my grandpas 1941 winchester 30-30 he bought right before the war started.

  68. I have guns I am fond of, but none that are heirlooms. Like others here, I was raised in a house without guns. My father was raised in backwoods Pennsylvania, a place where everyone hunts, during the Depression; and since his father had become totally disabled in a switching yard accident, I have little doubt that he hunted with his cousins to put food on the table. But if he did, it is something he never ever spoke about. The only thing I remember him saying about guns at all was that he couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn with a .45 when he was in the Army (as a tank gunner, I suspect he was issued one.) He did give me a single shot Crosman .22 CO2 pistol (which was quite the surprise), but we never shot together.
    Of the guns I own, a personal favorite is a .36 cal ’62 Colt pocket Navy reproduction. A beautiful piece that is light weight and feels great in the hand, even if it is not nearly as smooth cycling as my ’61 tuned Navy.

  69. The most important gun I own? All of them.

    My personal favorite? My Marlin 336 .30-30. I love shooting that thing.

    As for heirloom pieces, there aren’t any to speak of.

    I come from a rural area where guns are necessary tools and everyone has at least one. My dad still has the same Glenfield bolt-action .22 he bought when he got home from Vietnam, but that’s all it ever has been — a rarely used and uncared-for tool in the back of the closet. He’s not anti by any stretch, but he doesn’t really like guns (though he won a marksmanship award in basic training). No more sentimental value in it than in his favorite hammer. Actually, less; that hammer is older than I am, it has built three of our family’s homes, and I’d consider it an honor to have it passed on to me one day.

    My guns aren’t fancy or expensive, but they’re solid pieces and I’m taking care of them with the aim of passing them all on to my son a few decades from now. I’m pretty sure he’ll appreciate them (as he does now).

  70. Winchester bolt-action single-shot .22. It’s been handed down from my paternal grandfather, who bought it in 1928, through my father and uncle to me. It’s what I learned to shoot on, then became my first firearm. It’s what I dragged through the woods during high school, sniping squirrels and crows. The ejector is broke, the rifling so worn it’s not really visible, the stock refinished innumerable times. It is my very favorite gun.

  71. I’ve got a 70 year old remington 521t .22 rifle that belonged to my grandfather and then my father before me. It’s also the firearm I first shot. And still the sweetest.

  72. Daisy BB gun given to me by my grandfather at Christmas when I was 8. My parents didn’t want me to have a BB gun. So it supprised everyone when I unrapped the present. I remember mom saying you can’t have that and my WWII hard a$$ grandfather looking her dead on and saying Oh yes you can. I loved that BB gun and spent so much time shooting it.

  73. I have a lot of very fine firearms, and my first inclination was to say ‘all of them’. There are no ‘heirlooms’ from our family and no emotin’ attachments. My duty Smith Model 66 would be second in line, but the historical heritage aspect of a fully true original M-1 Carbine stands out.

    Very lightly used, neither altered nor rehabbed, 1943 DTD and S/N Inland M-1 Carbine (w/flip peep sight and no bayonet lug of course) wearing original low stock and sling is probably the most important gun I own from an heirloom perspective. A gem of a find on consignment at a LGS sold by its heir who likely cared less about this apparent family heirloom other than how much it was worth.

    I put 20 rounds through it B4 buying to verify its cycling and my assessment. Dead on accurate and smooth as expected for near new mil. spec. with no detectable muzzle wear. Its history is a secret to me and it probably saw zero battle action, but that’s ok. It’s now in the hands of someone who appreciates such a gem, as does my son. It will likely never be fired again; I bought (and shoot) a “Mil-Spec” and a “Scout” M-1 from Fulton Armory just so I would never be tempted.

    For security, just as stated in the article, the weapon I’m carrying is the most important firearm I own.

  74. I have an old Winchester bolt-action .22 rifle that my grandfather carried with him on horseback while he herded cattle in Texas back when they used to do that sort of thing. It’s pretty beat up and spits at you when you fire it, but it’s the most accurate rifle I’ve had my hands on (not that I’ve had many). Something about watching my kids fire their Great-Grandpa’s rifle and hit the bulls-eye that puts a smile on my face. I know it would his, if he were still around. I know he bagged a bunch of coyotes with that thing back when they’d pay for the ears.

  75. I have 2 items one is my first gun, a 20 gauge single shot, and the K-Bar my great-uncle carried when he was in New Caledonia and the Philippines during WW2.

  76. It’s a tie between my grandfathers government model and his model 70 feather weight in 30-06. I personally have enjoyed the model 70 the most in terms of actual use, however I’d grab the government model in a house fire.

  77. My old buddy, Fred, was a gunsmith in Maine. His primary interest was in old single-shot rifles. About 15 years ago, he wrote to me, asking if he should take an “old revolver” in trade for about $800 worth of work. It turned out that the old revolver was a 1910-vintage S&W .44 Special Triple Lock Target Model in about 90% condition. I told him to do the trade immediately, before the other party got back on his meds. Several months later, Fred called and asked me if I’d be interested in buying the Triple Lock for the $800 he had in it. I couldn’t say yes fast enough. It’s a great shooter, and it saved me from an angry Russian boar on one occasion, but that’s another story. Fred has since passed away, and there’s no way I’d ever sell this gun.

  78. Never did find out what happened to Dad’s BSA .22 single shot – probably sold by my mother after he died. Most valuable gift from my grandfather – a set of encyclopedias that got me straight A’s throughout schooling, and books by Col. Jim Corbett, describing what it takes to put your life at risk to protect vulnerable Indian villagers from terrible feline predation. My Sikh friend showed me his father’s M1 Garand – he had been a senior Indian Army officer.

    My Mossberg Maverick 88 keeps me safe. Other rifles are fun but maybe not essential. Nah, I’m kidding, they’re ALL essential!

  79. Sorry, two most sentimental.. my dad’s early 22 colt woodsman pistol, and the Ithaca 20 gauge single he bought me at age 8 (with a hammer and hinged break open to reload)…. got my first partridge with the latter… my brother got his old J C Higgins 12 guage that was mail ordered in the sane days when FFLs weren’t even a sick thought in any Fellow Traveler’s mind.

  80. I would say what mine is, but in case the goobermint decides to go full retard and do nationwide confiscation, I’ll just be content knowing that it’s mine and no one else has to know about it.

  81. My wife passed away in 2001. It crushed me in a way I had not thought possible. That Christmas was going to be bad for me. My brother with the help of the whole family bought me an M1A Supermatch with the matching Milspec optics. When I look at that rifle it will always remind me of how much my family loves and cares about me.

  82. I have two. My grandpa told me as a little kid that someday the Remington 760 Gamemaster he had on his wall was going to be my hunting rifle. It was made in the early 50’s. When I turned 12, my grandpa told me to come on over and grab my rifle. I did and it has been my hunting rifle ever since. It is old as heck and even his name on the leather sling. My dad said I needed to save some money for the scope. I saved and went down to Bi-Mart and bought it myself when I was 14 or so. He came home from work and told me I wasn’t supposed to buy the scope yet because he was going to double my saved money to get a really nice scope. The scope works fine and holds zero.

    The second one is my Springfield Armory M1 Garand. I got it through the CMP two years ago. I have wanted one for a very long time and I just didn’t know enough on how to get one. It is a great rifle and I am sure it has a lot of history behind it.

  83. The 1903 Springfield, a rifle like the one my Grandfather carried in the trenches in WWI. Also, whatever I have riding in my holster at any moment. 🙂

  84. My most cherished possession……………….an antique 50 cal. round my Dad made into a letter opener when he was a gunner on the B 24’s…………………….

  85. A Ruger 10-22 takedown. If the S ever H’s the F, man – those squirrels are in for some trouble… Squirrel stew, squirrel on the barbie, squirrel gumbo, squirrel fricassee… mmmmm.

    I sold the rest of my collection to buy a couple boxes of .22LR, so no sentimental pieces to speak of 😉

  86. All my guns that my grandfather gave me. The rest of his collection is in my uncles house rusting in his attic. My uncle “split” the collection with my brother and I (I use that term loosely because all the ones he gave us had a flaw or at least he thought they did). There are several fine firearms that will one day be sold by my cousin who does not know a butt from a barrel. Sad. But, back on topic, my favorite firearms are three: my Remington 95 derringer, from my grandpa. My Remington 1858, (original), and my mossberg bolt action .410, given to me by my dad as my first gun.

  87. I have 4…and I think about to be 5.

    1. S&W Model 28 .357 6″ barrel. My dad bought it in late 70’s when he thought he was going to be assigned as defense attaché in Iran. Then the shah fell before he was sent, thankfully. He gave it to me as a gift, and many years later I had it serviced and made like new again, and have it to him as a birthday gift. He’s passed on so it’s now back in my hands and will never leave them.

    2. Ruger Mark II .22 bull barrel. My dad gave me this for Christmas my junior year of high school. Best Christmas present I’ve ever received. Will never leave my possession.

    3. A Winchester .22lr unknown model. It was my dad’s when he was young, he gave it to me for my 13th birthday. Best birthday gift ever. Again, won’t ever part with.

    4. Colt 6945 SBR. Finally approved only a month ago, but took me a lot of effort and waiting to get. It brings back good memories of friends I spent time overseas with every time I pick it up. And it has been even more fun to shoot than I expected. If I only get to actually shoot one of my firearms for the rest of my life, this is the one I’d choose.

    5. This one should come in hopefully soon…a Colt Special Combat Government Carry model. I’ve wanted a SCG since I was a young boy, and finally have the means (sort of) to acquire one. I’ve been in love with Colt 1911’s for over 30 years so I know I’ll love this one.

  88. I thought you’d never ask. Why, its the one with the shoulder thingy that goes up, of course.

    JK, but I am fond of the S&W 39-2 my father in law gave me.

  89. 1. My great grandfather’s Remington 870 Wingmaster 20 gauge made in November 1950

    2. My grandfather’s Colt Commercial 1911 made in 1932. He got it from a police auction in the 50s. Rumored to be used in a murder by a jealous husband.

  90. My most priceless family firearm would have been an immaculate Burnside carbine carried by a distant relative in the civil war, it was unfortunately stolen by some renters (barfly scumbags) my late grandfather “trusted wholeheartedly ”

    I never forgave him for that.

  91. None of my firearms were passed down, all were purchased by me, as I am the first generation of my family to be Pro-2A. I have 2 guns that as far as I am concerned, are of the greatest import for me-my work pistol a Ruger SR-9, purchased thanks to an inheritance from my grandmother-I have nicknamed it “Flaming Rose” as Granma’s name was Rosa. The other is a Sentinel .22 nine shot revolver I got to train my daughter. The 9 keeps me safe on the job-the .22 gives me a way to introduce gun safety and utility to another generation.

  92. My late grandfather’s 1954 Savage 99E and 1948 Ithaca Model 37 and the 1972 Marlin 39M that he bought me when I turned 13.

  93. My Ruger P90 .45 My dad promised he’d buy it for me if I made all A’s all year during the 8th grade. I will make a similar deal with my son when he’s old enough.

  94. My favorite is my old, beat-up Remington Model 8 in 35-Rem, with the shotgun buttstock. I have loved the long-recoil rifles since I first set eyes on one as a clerk in a gun store in the 1970’s. Kind of like a bulldog; so ugly they’re cute. Took me thirty years, but I finally got one.

    I especially love telling the Kalashnikov-lovers I encounter that their hero stole the safety lever and the double-horned hammer off John Browning’s patent of 1900. But what the hell, the Russians stole J. Walter Cristie’s whole tank when they built their T-34, and their first long-range bomber after WWII was a knockoff of the B-29…

    • No, Christie sold the design to the Soviets when the forward thinking, genius IQ US Army High Command turned him down. So the USA had to fight with Shermans against King Tigers. Ulp!

  95. My Paternal Grandfathers 1961 870, my maternal Grandfathers 1947 Auto 5, my first gun a 1932 model 31 Remington single shot .22, my dad’s first gun, an H&R topper .410, my first shotgun, a 1986 BPS 20…. And my fathers sweet 16 and Mag 12 that he no longer shoots… All pieces of my family history to be one day given to my 3 boys.

  96. I thought about this question all day…

    How do I favor thee, let me count the ways.

    My springfield 84-c
    That my dad gave to me,

    My Smith and Wesson
    Upon learning my lesson,

    My Remington rolling block
    Built like a fine clock,

    My Benelli super 90 shotgun
    It’s really a fun one,

    My McMillan fifty bmg
    My favorite gift from me,

    My FNS-40
    Won from a film. A shorty,

    My Glock model 20
    Cause it packs a-plenty,

    My M-1 Garand
    From the European command,

    My AR-15
    For everything, in between…

  97. Passed down to me:
    S&W Model 19-2 2.5″ barrel
    FN Browning Semi-Auto 22short rifle
    Remington 870 12 Gauge Wingmaster
    JC Higgins model 30 22lr

    My Colt Combat Elite and my M1A

  98. There are 3, one for each generation: My grandfather’s 1928 Smith & Wesson M&P Hand Ejector, my father’s Remington Model 33 single shot .22 rifle that was a gift from his eldest uncle who was leaving for WWII, and the .30-30 Marlin that was the first gun I ever bought and is my wife’s deer rifle now.

  99. My AR15. I know it’s not romantic, but I’m slowly learning how to shoot well and it will the first rifle I end up taking on a hunt. Plus “they” don’t want me owning it, so there’s that.

  100. I have 3 weapons that are earmarked for the kids
    1. My dad’s old 22 mossberg s/a rifle, something he bought new after WWII, well worn (only single shot since it went to the smith after a rebluing job). the rifle us kids learned to shoot with.

    2. 1903 springfield mk1 , a dcm weapon sold to me by my neighbor as a teen. My first firearm.

    4. S&W M19 4 inch, my duty weapon for 7 yrs in my wasted youth.

  101. Every gun I grew shooting with my father was stolen by my crack addled cousin. But of those, there were two. Remington 1100, 3in chamber vented rib. We must have shot 10,000 clays together. My mother bought him that for in 1975 the month after I was born. The other was a S&W 686 with a 6 inch barrel. After I shot the gun the first time, he talked that gun up to me like it was a howitzer. Told me how great I did. Made me feel 8 feet tall. I was 10 years old and I was likely shooting .38 spl.

    I’m getting a little verklempt just thinking about it.

  102. High Standard K121 Flite King 12 gauge shotgun with the barrel cut with a pipe cutter to 18.5 inches.
    I was 19, and there was a situation where my life could have potentially been in danger. Bought the shotgun from a Family friend (legally of course) and felt terrible cutting the barrel of such an old shotgun that has been around for decades but I did what I had to do. It wasn’t worth much, i only paid 125, but at the time I didn’t have much money either. I still love the old thing. I had the front sight bead reattached to the now shorter barrel. I still have it, I can’t allow myself to sell this first gun or modify it and bring it back to it’s original condition. I bought it to protect me and mine and I love it for being there. not to mention the Action is one of the smoothest shotgun actions I have ever had the pleasure of working

  103. 1810 Springfield Arms flintlock, used in the War of 1812, and handed down generation to generation. I also have a family-owned Winchester ’73 in 38.40. It still shoots beautifully, but the ballistics are almost comical.

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