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Anybody remember Colonel Larson, "The Marlin Man"

Does any one here remember the "Marlin Man" Colonel Larson from way back yonder? I recall he did some amazing things and we had him at the store where I worked to do an exhibition that was cancelled at the last minute by PD. That was in the mid 1960's. We set up a back stop at the back of the store in a little hallway. He was going to do a drawing with his rifle on a piece of aluminum plate.
 

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Re: Anybody remember Colonel Larson, "The Marlin Man"

No.

But I remember a gunshow with a guy selling a sheet of tin, that had been shot up with the holes forming an American Indian in a war bonnet head dress. He wasn't selling it...just showing it off.

Jon
 
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Re: Anybody remember Colonel Larson, "The Marlin Man"

I use to be into Marlin shotguns a while back and believe it or not I bought a Grade C 16 ga Marlin shotgun reputed to have belonged to Col. Larson. It was sweet. Fancy wood and engraving. I kept it a while and sold it. Couldn't prove it was his but it was a nice Marlin none the less. Seeing as how he was a Wisconsinite and you don't see many Grade C Marlins in Wisconsin it seemed plausible at the time I bought it and sold it.
 

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Re: Anybody remember Colonel Larson, "The Marlin Man"

Yes, I remember him. And his first name actually is Colonel. That's not a rank, or he wasn't an auctioneer. I always found that interesting.
 

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Re: Anybody remember Colonel Larson, "The Marlin Man"

From - Marlin Firearms: a history of the guns and the company that made them. By William S. Brophy

Colonel Larson (his real name) was an All Star athlete in 5 sports, graduated in Chemistry and Physics at Wisconsin State University. Became a high school teacher and high school football coach. While standing on the football practice field he experienced muscle pains in his neck and later found out he had polio. In those days almost no one survived polio and it was reported he had died. However, they say that due to his great athletic strength he was able to beat that illness and lived a full and successful life. His marksmanship with a Marlin .22 came as a result of incessant training of his muscles with hand exercises and rope tricks and shooting his Marlin rifle to beat the polio disease. He was able to beat the disease and became a well known marksman and spokesman for Marlin rifles.



GB45
 

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Re: Anybody remember Colonel Larson, "The Marlin Man"

Wow!

It seems I am constantly amazed by those who receive a death sentence from doctors, who then refuse to believe the doctors!

This is the first time I've heard of such a story with polio.

Jon
 

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Re: Anybody remember Colonel Larson, "The Marlin Man"

A bit more information I dug up from a man who said he lived next door to "THE COLONEL" :

"Remarkably, he was an athlete, and later a coach, and was suddenly stricken with polio. At one point the papers reported his obituary. Turns out he was still alive and though his family was told he would be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life he fought back and started doing rope tricks and started shooting a Marlin .22 (to exercise his good muscles. In a few years he was walking again. He continued training and performed in various affairs and entertained many folks. I grew up next door to the man. You can't imagine how big that is in a small town to a 8 year old kid. I never remember a time that Colonel wouldn't drop whatever he was doing, throwing boomerangs, carving a Totum pole, or shooting a handgun in his backyard, (in the city) and spend time with us "pesky" kids. He and his wife would take us in to their home like one of there own... life was great back then. I remember seeing his guns on display in the local tavern/bowling alley, and photos of his wife being shot at with a piece of chalk in her mouth, the white particles flying everywhere. Anyway, thought I'd share that story. I guess this may reflect a bit on myself... any wonder I have interests in Guns? Here are the records that are printed on the back of an old photo I have in my stuff...

1. Hit 3,600 asprins without a miss, at 50-60-90 Feet.
2. Split 125 Playing Cards consecutively at 50 feet.
3. Shot 750 asprins at 50 feet over the shoulder while sighting them through a mirror.
4. Hit 1,100 eight inch targets in 4 1/2 hours without a miss.
5. Leveled a gun and hit 17 blocks of wood dead center in 18 seconds.
6. Discharged over 1,000,000 rounds through the Marlin Mountie 39, his World Championship Record Setting Rifle.

He also set a Live Ammo Record of 12 hundredths of a second in 5 draws and 5 hits with no reaction time."



Remember that this man had already graduated from college, taught high school and sports BEFORE he contracted Polio, AND THEN he became one of the best known exhibition shooters of the 50s and 60s and "World Champion Professional Rifleman" according to other writings became a very good friend of Marlin himself. That is what the human spirit and resolve can do if you just put your mind and heart into it.



GB45
 

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Re: Anybody remember Colonel Larson, "The Marlin Man"

Golfbuddy45 said:
A bit more information I dug up from a man who said he lived next door to "THE COLONEL" :

"Remarkably, he was an athlete, and later a coach, and was suddenly stricken with polio. At one point the papers reported his obituary. Turns out he was still alive and though his family was told he would be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life he fought back and started doing rope tricks and started shooting a Marlin .22 (to exercise his good muscles. In a few years he was walking again. He continued training and performed in various affairs and entertained many folks. I grew up next door to the man. You can't imagine how big that is in a small town to a 8 year old kid. I never remember a time that Colonel wouldn't drop whatever he was doing, throwing boomerangs, carving a Totum pole, or shooting a handgun in his backyard, (in the city) and spend time with us "pesky" kids. He and his wife would take us in to their home like one of there own... life was great back then. I remember seeing his guns on display in the local tavern/bowling alley, and photos of his wife being shot at with a piece of chalk in her mouth, the white particles flying everywhere. Anyway, thought I'd share that story. I guess this may reflect a bit on myself... any wonder I have interests in Guns? Here are the records that are printed on the back of an old photo I have in my stuff...

1. Hit 3,600 asprins without a miss, at 50-60-90 Feet.
2. Split 125 Playing Cards consecutively at 50 feet.
3. Shot 750 asprins at 50 feet over the shoulder while sighting them through a mirror.
4. Hit 1,100 eight inch targets in 4 1/2 hours without a miss.
5. Leveled a gun and hit 17 blocks of wood dead center in 18 seconds.
6. Discharged over 1,000,000 rounds through the Marlin Mountie 39, his World Championship Record Setting Rifle.

He also set a Live Ammo Record of 12 hundredths of a second in 5 draws and 5 hits with no reaction time."



Remember that this man had already graduated from college, taught high school and sports BEFORE he contracted Polio, AND THEN he became one of the best known exhibition shooters of the 50s and 60s and "World Champion Professional Rifleman" according to other writings became a very good friend of Marlin himself. That is what the human spirit and resolve can do if you just put your mind and heart into it.



GB45
And people wonder why I love Malrin rifles...a good shooter can work miraculous things with one :)
 

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Colonels Granddaughter... welcome to Marlin Owners... I had not heard of your grandfather until reading some of his exploits here... sounds like an amazing man.. seeing your posts today mad reading about him again extra special...
 

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Sounds like you knew my grandfather quite well. he was amazing.i remember when he would shoot the chalk out of grandmas mouth- i think she put a stop to that when a filling came loose! he was good at many things.
He has many fans here , I am one of them ! You know that someone was gonna ask you to share storys , photos or whatever about the Colonel. It would be an Honer to have a sticky with anything you would care to share with us here at M.O.

There are many 39 ,39A, and Mountie fans here that would love to hear or see anything about OUR Hero rimfire shooter . I would like my grandsons to know more about this man too , as they will be the ones to keep the Marlin name at its rightfull place , Rite at the top of the Levergun world .

Please share with us whatever and whenever you could , it will be well received here .

Kerr
 
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I am fortunate enough to have purchased a couple of his guns, years ago. A 39 A and a High Standard Double Nine. They are both personalized by him with a snakeskin covered buttplate on the 39 and snakeskin covered staghorn grips on the Double Nine. Most of the snakeskin is gone on the pistol and the rear sight has been removed, by the Colonel, I expect. I assume he liked to shoot without it. I also have copies of many of his magazine ads and articles. Sounds like he was quite a guy.
Tom
 

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I have had this poster 0f the Colonel for a few years, I don't remember where I got it but this thread reminded me I had it now I'm going to get it framed. IMG_9034.JPG
 

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I remember Col. Larson through the Marlin ads in Boys' Life magazine in the 1960's. When you payed your Boy Scout dues in my troop, you got a subscription to Boys' Life. I remember him shooting a Marlin Mountie .22 rifle and he was also good with a bull whip.

DRSLYR
 
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