Monday, June 16, 2008

Want to "Letter" a Gun?

For A. H. Fox:
John T. Callahan
53 Old Quarry Rd.
Westfield, MA 01085

If a model number is not known, please include a photo, the ser. no., gauge, barrel length and style, stock and forearm style, markings, patent dates, inspector stamps, etc. The charge for this service is $30.00 for the Sterlingworth Model, and $40.00 for graded models A-F and single barrel trap guns. Please allow 6 weeks for an adequate response.

For Colt:
Office of the Historian
Mrs. Kathleen J. Hoyt, Historian
P.O. Box 1868
Hartford, CT
06144-1868 U.S.A.
Tel: 1-800-962-COLT
Fax: (860) 244-1449

For Smith and Wesson:
Request the history of your S&W handgun
Due to a high number of requests, the current turnaround time for a history letter is 8 - 12 weeks.

Prior to requesting the history of your handgun, first determine that you have an authentic Smith & Wesson handgun. If the barrel is not stamped Smith & Wesson, Springfield, Massachusetts or Smith & Wesson, Houlton, ME your handgun is not a Smith & Wesson. Many handguns are stamped with the caliber, i.e., .38 S&W. This indicates the caliber and does not necessarily mean that it is a Smith & Wesson manufactured handgun.

Letter of Authenticity (See sample)

If you desire an in-depth response we can provide a formal letter of authenticity. There is a fee of $30.00 to cover our research, administrative and postage costs.

To order the history of your Smith & Wesson, print this form (requires Adobe Acrobat), fill it out and return it along with a photograph or sketch of your handgun and your check or money order.

If you decide to obtain a history letter, please provide a complete description of the firearm that includes all markings, barrel length, finish, single or double action, exposed or concealed hammer and a photograph or outline sketch. If you do not know the exact caliber of the revolver please measure the length of the cylinder and include that with the description. This will aid in the identification of the handgun. If your revolver is marked with the Model Number it is not necessary to include an outline sketch or photograph.

For L.C. Smith: See Winchester
For Marlin: See Winchester
For Parker Brothers guns:
The PGCA Research Letter program is available to all owners and collectors through mail inquiry. We have completed indexing for all serial numbers in the existing Parker records. The cost for each search will be $40 for PGCA members and $60 for non members. An individual check, payable to PGCA, should be included for each gun to be searched. The check will be returned if no record is available for the specified gun. It will take about 30 days to process a request, and the reply will be in letter format.

For Savage:
Mr. John Callahan
53 Old Quarry Rd.
Westfield, MA 01085

The charge for this service is $15.00 per gun - please allow 2-4 weeks for an adequate response.

For Winchester:
The Cody Firearm Museum Records Service has rare access to the select serial number records of the following companies:

Winchester Marlin L.C. Smith

Cody Firearms Museum Records Service provides Cody Firearms Museum members with information from original factory records based on the make and serial number of the firearm.

What is a Factory Letter?
What is a Serial Number Search?

Factory letters may contain the following information on your Winchester, Marlin or L.C. Smith firearm:

Warehouse Date Type of Firearm Caliber
Barrel Length & Type Trigger Stock
Sights Magazine Butt
Shipped Date Additional Remarks Checkering

It takes approximately four (4) weeks to process a factory letter request.

The Cody Firearms Museum Factory Letter Pricelist

Effective January 1, 2008

Winchester Lever Action and Marlin Letters - $60 (Firearms Members $35)
Model 21 and L.C. Smith Letters - $75 (Firearms Members $50)
Model 21 Letter with Build Sheet Information - $100 (Firearms Members $75)
Firearms Member 5-Letter Package - $150
Firearms Member 10-Letter Package - $250
Additional Research - $50 per hour (one hour minimum)

Members of the Cody Firearms Museum are part of a unique group, and receive free or discounted factory letters and serial numbers searches. These are special benefits that are not included in other Buffalo Bill Historical Center membership categories.

The Cody Firearms Museum Records Office is open on the following Saturdays during these 2008 shows:

March 15, 2008 - Baltimore Antique Arms Show, Baltimore, Md.
April 5, 2008 - Wanenmacher's Tulsa Arms Show, Tulsa, Okla.
May 17, 2008 - Colorado Gun Collector's Assoc. Annual Gun Show, Denver, Colo.
June 14, 2008 - Winchester Club of America, Cody, Wyo.
June 21, 2008 - The Winchester Arms Collectors Association (WACA), Cody, Wyo.
July 26, 2008 - Missouri Valley Arms Collector's Association Annual Show, Kansas City, Mo.
Sept. 20, 2008 - Dallas Arms Collectors, Dallas, Texas
October 4, 2008 - WACA Annual Eastern Show, Springfield, Mass.
November 15, 2008 - WACA Annual West Coast Show, Reno, Nev.
Anyone calling from these shows receives free serial number searches and $25 discounts on memberships (new or renewal).

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