Just before New Year, I scored this little gem--a true blast from the past.
This rifle is not just your ordinary Winchester '94 though. I bought this one specifically for these markings
And if you think that doesn't happen today, note that the countless AR-15 rifles out there had their receivers come out of one of a small handful of plants that can actually forge them--most smaller AR-15
"manufacturers" just pay a bit extra to get their name and logo stamped onto that receiver when they buy it from the real manufacturer...just like Sears and JC Penney and Montgomery Ward all used to do back in the good old days.
But this isn't just any old Sears gun. Sears had various grades of firearms that they offered, from bargain-basement no-frills guns to their top-of-the-line models. And the best ones were marketed through an endorsement by this guy:
Ted Williams. Williams, for those too young to remember, was a serious baseball player for the Boston Red Sox, 1939-1960. He was good--so good that I think that he'd have beaten Babe Ruth out for career home runs except for tho incidents that interrupted his baseball career: World War Two and the Korean War.
Drafted first in 1942, he fought for a deferment and the American public and some of his sponsors got pretty hot about it. He finally went into the Naval Reserve in 1943. And instead of fighting for an easy slot, he signed up for training as a Naval Aviator and he was considered an exemplary pilot by those who few with him. After the war, he resumed his baseball career with the Red Sox and his playing took the nation by storm. Then in 1950, he broke his arm during an All-Star game and his 1950 and 1951 seasons pretty much sucked as he tried to rehab his arm. Then in 1952, just as he was getting back into the swing of things, the US Marines, short on pilots in Korea, tapped him on the shoulder and recalled him just six games into the season. Williams wasn't happy at all, but he was an American and a Marine so he put his ball career on hold again and went to Korea, again as a pilot who was respected by his professional flying peers.
But for his time away from baseball to fight twice, he might well have topped Babe Ruth's 714 home run record. As it was, Williams retired in 1960 with 521.