Wednesday, August 07, 2013

"the wholesale purchase of guns will deter the midnight attempts on private property and person"



Various Devices Adopted a Safeguards
From Automatic Carbines to Crowingcocks.

   At least fifty good citizens of this city armed themselves with revolvers yesterday judging from the sales reported at the various stores. Most them were expensive guns too, ranging as high as sixteen dollars for the Smith and Wesson hammerless, the purchasers, that is the majority of them, being determined to arm themselves in a thoroughly up to date method and expend a few more dollars rather than miss any "enterprising burglar when a burgling." Fifty cartridges went in every case with the sales.

   Yesterday was not the banner day either in some of the stores. The top notch was reached by E.O. Hall and Sons who sold twenty three on Wednesday alone. The increased sales have been going on steadily for the last two weeks and it is estimated that at least two hundred and fifty 'persuaders' have been bought since the first of the year. Most of these have been of the smaller calibre, 32 or 33, although there have been one or two of the large frontier Colts which carry a heavy 44-40 calculated to let all kinds of daylight, moonlight or lamp light through a highwayman or other robber, which have been bought by particularly blood thrlsty personages. These carry a barrel about a foot long and are not intended for pocket or parlor use, being preeminently manufactured for business purposes.

   Liberal purchases of ammunition have revealed the existence of any amount of arms owned by citizens and now out and oiled into utility. If any of the thugs are sufficiently literary in their tastes and language to read English, they may be enlightened and perhaps forewarned by the information that there are undoubtedly over five-hundred American citizens, aside from numerous Chinese, who are "heeled" for their arrival with an armament ranging from a 45-70 repeating rifle to a 22 saloon pistol.

   For the benefit of uninvited midnight visitors, at Waikiki. Prince Cupid has ordered an automatic Colt's, which is capable of being used as a pistol or mounted into a carbine. One pull of the trigger will send a stream of eleven bullets into its target, providing it is aimed straight, and as the barrel can be moved in a radius during the delivery in the fashion of a garden hose, the odds are that one shot of the fusillade will come unpleasantly near Mister Robber.

   Others, less bloodthirsty, have adopted an ammonia pistol which will effectually put any intruder hors de combat although, if fired in a room, would probably necessitate a hasty exit on the part of the firer.

   Pacific Heights Would seem to be armed like a Boer kopje. C. S. Desky has a miscellaneous assortment of firearms and so has J. G. Pratt, for which the latter was purchasing ammunition yesterday. Mr. Desky is said to have thought of turning his cars into armored trains provided with gatlings and mounting a Nordenfelt on the top of the hill and also at the curves in the road if the present situation gets any more alarming. While a burglar could make excellent time running away from anywhere on the slopes of the Heights, he would present an excellent chance for a line shot for anyone who is any good at shooting at running game.

   Old maids and other unprotected ladies whose natural timidity will not permit them to handle a firearm, have adopted the ancient custom of procuring.old hats coats and canes from their gentlemen friends and placing them in a conspicuous position under a light that burns all night. Tea trays, tin cans and strings attached to a bell and tied across the doors have also been pressed into service.

   Likely looking dogs without a home have been taken in and provided with all the luxuries of life in return for their services as watch dogs. Pedigree counts for nothing in the present exigency, teeth, wakeful habits and a loud bark are the essentials. Those citizens who have a good canine attached to their premises are only troubling themselves about possible holdups. One lady has a rooster who lords it over a numerous brood of hens and she relies upon his inclination to crow lustily on the least provocation to appraise her and scare the intending burglar.

   The sales of firearms yesterday were large everywhere. D. Whitman sold nea[r]ly a dozen yesterday as did Pearson and Potter and E. O. Hall. The W.B. Allen Hardware Company sold eighteen most of winch were bought by Chinamen, one cautious pake buying two. "We have sold more revolvers since the first of the year than we have altogether since we have been in business," said Mr. Allen and all the other vendors of guns speak in the same strain. To the "powers that prey" of the city the popular saying is reversed and should now read "Forearmed is forewarned" and it is quite possible that the wholesale purchase of guns will deter the midnight attempts on private property and person for "quite a while."

[The Hawaiian Star, Honolulu, H.I., Friday, January 17, 1902. Vol. IX. No. 3069 Pg. 3]

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