As lovers of the .45-70, we surely fall into the Elmer side of the Elmer Keith vs. Jack O"Connor/Roy Weatherby controversy. I recently came across my copy of Rifle #96, where on p. 20 Neal Knox wrote a memoriam about Elmer. Here are a few quotes:
He was probably the most sworn-by and sworn-at figure in the gun fraternity--a clan that triggers a lot of swearing."
I learned that when that old man said something about guns, you'd better listen. Like he said in his last book, he had been there.
Elmer was muttering loudly about how he wished he had. . .Lubaloy 3s. No. 3 shot hadn't been available for a generation. . .Some years later I learned of a mathematical analysis. . .best compromise for pass-shooting geese was No. 3. Elmer had known it long before, not because of some computer printout, but on the basis of years of experience.
Late one summer evening. . .[I was] with a writer known for his advocacy of light bullets and high velocities. . . the elk bolted through a clearing, showing only his rump and the rear of his heavy rack. The writer mumbled, "Don't ever tell anyone I said so, but in this kind of hunting, Elmer is right."
Elmer once said of another writer-with whom he had hunted many times, "he's gone high velocity." He said it sorrowfully, with a shake of the head. . .
Elmer couldn't fathom the concept of being "over-gunned." He would say: "What's that? Are you afraid he'll be over-dead?"
Thanks for your post! I enjoyed it!
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I still enjoy reading the writings of Elmer Keith
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My favorite chapter in "Hell I Was There" is where they gave him a .243win to go down to Texas to "shoot a little deer." I won't spoil it for those who haven't read the book, but Keith was not impressed, and thought the .243 was way too small for deer, but might be okay for varmints. While I don't agree completely with his thoughts on the .243win, The man was a walking book of knowledge on all things gun related, and a great American.
If anyone has not read "Hell I Was There," or has never heard of Elmer Keith, you should pick up a copy on Amazon. You will enjoy the read, and likely learn something, too.
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wow! $150+ for a book?
And worth every penny.
"I never gave anybody hell. I just told the truth and they thought it was hell." Harry S. Truman
please don't take my remark the wrong way, i am sure it is a very fine book. i think it was just a shock to see that price, i was expecting $40-$60 i guess... i dunno, i will have to save up, i would love to read more about the bigger calibers, especially the 45-70
The thing to remember about Elmer is that he also favored high velocity rounds, generally as long as they had large bores...so there really is no conflict between Elmer, Jack, and Roy...Elmer just liked big bullets....
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nice -- how about a scan of the memorium ??
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