Karl Bosselmann, who is a venerable stalwart of the lever-action rifle, points out to us the unpleasant production of the cross-bolt hammer-block “safety” for the traditional American lever-actions. It is easily deactivated by a quick touch-weld, but the fact that you have to do this is irritating. The earlier lever guns do not have this nuisance installed. If you own one of the newer ones, fix it or get it fixed immediately.

The arts of weaponcraft are difficult to maintain. We realize there are a good many target shooters who truly know what they are about, but fewer hunter/riflemen all the time. We recently ran across a professional outfitter up in the Rockies who had never heard of the sitting position, nor how to use a shooting sling. And he is a man who takes people out hunting!

But where today does one learn about shooting? There are two good private schools, but Uncle Sugar has pretty much given up trying. Good places don’t abound. The self-taught sometimes do very well—witness Stuart Edward White—but these people are exceptions to the rule.

Most of my adult life I have taught rifle and pistol marksmanship. I have succeeded beyond my wildest expectations in cases. This is spitting against a tide but it is, of course, better than doing nothing. I really do not know why it should trouble me because it is not my responsibility to educate the public. It does trouble me, however, to see how thinly the word is spread.

NOTE: The intellectual property of Jeff Cooper is owned by Gunsite Academy and reprinted from Gargantuan Gossip 2 with their permission. Jeff Cooper’s books are available from the ProShop at Gunsite (928-636-4565; and

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