Titan ReloadingLoad DataLee PrecisionWideners
MidSouth Shooters SupplyReloading EverythingRepackboxRotoMetals2
PBcastco Inline Fabrication
Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 12
Results 21 to 38 of 38

Thread: "Hell I was there" by Elmer Keith

  1. #21
    Boolit Grand Master
    rintinglen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Orange, VA NOW
    Posts
    6,295
    Phil Sharpe and Col D.B. Wesson are responsible for the .357. Keith had only slightly more impact on it than I, and I was born 18 years later.
    _________________________________________________It's not that I can't spell: it is that I can't type.

  2. #22
    Boolit Master
    JoeJames's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Arkansas Delta
    Posts
    1,458
    It took me about 30 years to get past the mental picture I had of a little bitty feller in a great big Stetson, and all that implied. But I took a chance on "Hell I was there", and I was pleasantly surprised. He knew what he was talking about, and I pushed all my pre-conceptions aside and enjoyed it. Same for Sixguns.
    Britons shall never be slaves.

  3. #23
    Boolit Master Murphy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Idabel, Oklahoma
    Posts
    1,312
    A friend and I were discussing Elmer Keith a few weeks back. His book "Hell I was there" is a great read. I never read much of his writings in my formative years as a hand gunner. Then something dawned on me. Given the time period Elmer lived and grew up in, maybe there were a lot of Elmer's? We just never heard of them and the powers that be in the gun rag world decided he was as good as any? Who knows? Just some food for thought.

    Murphy
    If I should depart this life while defending those who cannot defend themselves, then I have died the most honorable of deaths. Marc R. Murphy '2006'.

  4. #24
    Boolit Master
    JoeJames's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Arkansas Delta
    Posts
    1,458
    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    A friend and I were discussing Elmer Keith a few weeks back. His book "Hell I was there" is a great read. I never read much of his writings in my formative years as a hand gunner. Then something dawned on me. Given the time period Elmer lived and grew up in, maybe there were a lot of Elmer's? We just never heard of them and the powers that be in the gun rag world decided he was as good as any? Who knows? Just some food for thought.

    Murphy
    Speaking of good writers - one was Roy Dunlap. I accidentally ran across his book: "Ordnance went up front". His time as a US Army armorer in WW2, extremely interesting - discusses Allied and enemy firearms, and goes into detail over the M1, M1 Carbine, and BAR.
    Britons shall never be slaves.

  5. #25
    Boolit Master
    JSnover's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Sicklerville NJ
    Posts
    4,338
    "A Rifleman Went to War" (Mc Bride) is another good one. He had a lot to say about allied small arms used in the trenches in WW1.
    Warning: I know Judo. If you force me to prove it I'll shoot you.

  6. #26
    Boolit Master
    Bent Ramrod's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Southern Arizona
    Posts
    4,222
    That is the issue. You can have all the ďexperienceĒ in the world, but if you donít leave a record of it, itís gone as if it never was.

    Elmer was disciplined. He set himself the goal of writing 5000 words per day, IIRC. That was after a full day of guiding, ranching, hunting or whatever. Some Internet authorities donít do that much in a year, even including the flame wars they get into with other Internet authorities.

    And he was modest enough to admit that whatever position he enjoyed in the world of shooting was partly due to the fact that the Chauncey Thomases, the Capt. Crossmans, the Major Askins, the Col. Whelens, the Gen. Hatchers, and all the other leading lights of his own youth had by then left the range.

    Dave Brennan, who ramrodded the late, lamented Precision Shooting and Accurate Rifle magazines, was somehow able to get a lot of accuracy gunsmiths and benchrest champions, most of whom likely never wrote down anything more elaborate than a match entry form or a Brownellís order form, to write lengthy articles on their techniques, processes and their discoveries along the way. There were also a few stalwart souls who cleaned up Elmerís typing, spelling and grammar and turned it into writing for the ages.

    Those were the combinations that left us with the stuff we nitpick over. Nowadays, Iím finding more and more magazine articles, and even some books, seem to be written by ad-men and edited by computer checking algorithms. That, plus the dearth of any really revolutionary arms developments, makes a lot of the modern stuff a thin, pastel version of the old writings.

  7. #27
    Boolit Grand Master Bazoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Cecilia, Kentucky
    Posts
    6,292

  8. #28
    Boolit Bub
    Join Date
    Sep 2020
    Location
    lockhart, texas
    Posts
    32
    A BIG hand! I read Sharpes handloading opus, and he gives a pretty good account
    of developing the 357 Magnum, with help from Douglas Wesson* I never cared much for
    Elmer Keith! Thought he was full of bull, and he wasn't one to hide his lamp under a bushel
    basket! Saw a pic of him in an old issue of Guns & Ammo, shooting a huge African double rifle,
    and both his eyes were CLOSED in recoil! Elmer did his best shooting with his typewriter!

  9. #29
    Boolit Buddy Tall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2023
    Location
    Tulsa OK
    Posts
    265
    A great and interesting book. Worth reading, I did about 45 years ago.

  10. #30
    Boolit Master huntinlever's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    S. Central Wisconsin
    Posts
    1,196
    Quote Originally Posted by Bent Ramrod View Post
    Elmer was disciplined. He set himself the goal of writing 5000 words per day, IIRC. That was after a full day of guiding, ranching, hunting or whatever. Some Internet authorities don’t do that much in a year, even including the flame wars they get into with other Internet authorities.
    If so, that's impressive. That's about 20 double-spaced pages a day. Every writer has his own way to keep at it, in spite of the drudgery that often accompanies the empty hours. Do you or anyone else have a source on his writing habits? Interesting.
    -Paul

  11. #31
    Boolit Master

    alamogunr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    4,502
    About equal amounts of honesty and prejudice in this thread.
    John
    W.TN

  12. #32
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Posts
    952
    GONRA remembers how much I enyoyed reading Roy Dunlap's "Ordnance Went Up Front" in 1960's. (?)

  13. #33
    Boolit Master Cast10's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    538
    I’ve bought, traded, reloaded, shot, hunted, carried several 44 mags, all S&W’s, in my early days. Very accurate. Very powerful. Very much hard to master. I did, boldly!
    In the early days when Elmer Keith roamed the earth, times were much different. I’m sure a fellow had to be tough to be in the crowd he mixed with. I was not amazed one bit to discover he was instructed in handgun shooting by a past gunfighter. Pompous? You bet! He had to be.
    He lead me down the path of my first 44mag via his writings in Petersen rags. I was impressionable to say the least at that early age, but I also was a good listener, and his stories and experience intrigued me greatly. Never read the book, but have always wanted to. On my list.

  14. #34
    Boolit Master
    Bent Ramrod's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Southern Arizona
    Posts
    4,222
    Quote Originally Posted by huntinlever View Post
    If so, that's impressive. That's about 20 double-spaced pages a day. Every writer has his own way to keep at it, in spite of the drudgery that often accompanies the empty hours. Do you or anyone else have a source on his writing habits? Interesting.
    I canít recall now. Thereís a book out of vignettes by a friend of Keithís (The Other Side of a Western Legend); it may be in there somewhere. Safari Press has all his Guns and Ammo columns, as well as some of his letters; it might be somewhere in there.

    Way back when, when Ken Howell was on the 24hr Campfire site, he used to write occasional reminiscences about Elmer, who was a fellow writer as well as a close friend. The observation might be somewhere in that stuff.

    I remember being impressed as well. Back then I was feeding paper to a Gummint bureaucracy, and the idea that one could do that much writing and still do real work as well seemed pretty superhuman.

    I have to say that there was never an assertion Elmer made that I was able to check myself that seemed to be utterly fantastic or impossible. Iíve bent a couple boolits trying to squeeze them through the hole in the handle of the Ideal tong tools, just as he mentioned. Iíve encountered loading dies that were, indeed, ďmade more to the standards of downspouts made by tinsmiths than those of precision diemakers,Ē just as he did. I never tried to shoot a deer with a revolver at 600 yards, but I certainly could see the possibility after a session on gongs at 300 yards. I knew (and still know) that I was nowhere near the shot he was, but I did manage to surprise myself on occasion.

  15. #35
    Boolit Buddy Rockingkj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2023
    Location
    Nebraska
    Posts
    310
    Opinions and facts- too serious , me I like Pat McManus for pure make you laugh entertainment. Who has not had a Retch Sweeney they looked up to as a kid.

  16. #36
    Boolit Grand Master uscra112's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Switzerland of Ohio
    Posts
    6,159
    Quote Originally Posted by slohunter View Post
    There was only one Elmer Keith, wished I could of met Him, ego and all!
    About 15 years ago I ran into an old guy who was selling used books at a flea market in Hailey, Idaho. When the subject came around to Elmer, he said "Hell, I knew the guy! Biggest liar west of the Mississippi." And if you read that book of his carefully, you'll find he couldn't even keep his lies straight about that hunter who got shot. He tells two different versions at different places in the same book.
    Cognitive Dissident

  17. #37
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Posts
    952
    GONRA never seems to notice olde gunwriter massiive egos.
    Just goes right past me for some reason.....
    What really drives ME nuts is when some of today's
    gun writers fumble around trying to explain how automatic
    weapons verk! !! @!*&$%

  18. #38
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Central Texas
    Posts
    536
    Elmer was bigger than life and made contributions to our hobby, but by the early 1950's he wrote about his experiences more than anything else. I think he was most likely an outstanding hunter and superb field shooter. I grew up reading his works.

Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 12

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check