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The generally accepted version of Hemingway's suicide involved a 12-b Boss shotgun that he had purchased from Charles Wicks at Abercrombie & Fitch (A&F). As to what Baker and Mellon wrote -- the French philosopher, Montaigne, once observed that "Nothing is so firmly believed as what is least known". The A&F books do not contain any record that Hemingway purchased a Boss shotgun. Two of Hemingway's close hunting associates (who are still living) know nothing of him owning a Boss. The surviving parts from the suicide gun have been closely examined and are definitely not from a Boss, Beretta or M21.

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Our good friend from Australia in his book Reflections, Man and Boy had a story about a sucide gun, "A good killer." If you do not have a copy, you should. Written by Ron Forsyth and probably still available on Amazon. I have both a signed paperback as well as the late hard cover edition.

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Interesting thread regarding the disposition of suicide guns. It so happens that my younger brother owns a Rem. 870 that was once used for that purpose. A neighbor/friend of mine (and a somewhat troubled soul) got drunk one night, got in a fight with his girlfriend, then put the muzzle under his chin and pulled the trigger to "show her". A few months later, my Dad got a call from the father of the deceased friend. He lived out-of-state and we'd never met him until the funeral. He said that our local Sheriff's office had contacted him about the gun and asked what he wanted done with it (investigation was now complete). He knew no one else in our state but us, and asked if we'd like to have it, or if we might know someone who could use it. Neither my Dad nor myself could come to grips with the idea of owning it, but my younger brother had not known the deceased (he was away at college when the friend moved into our community) and did not own a shotgun at the time. So my Dad accepted it for my brother, and the father of the deceased instructed our local Sheriff's Dept. to release the gun to my Dad. Interestingly, at that point the gun "disappeared", and my Dad was told the gun had been destroyed some time ago (total BS, since the friend's father had just gotten the call a day before). My Dad happened to know the actual Sheriff somewhat, so he asked him if he would look into it. The gun magically re-appeared within a few days. (Surely some Deputy thought he was getting a free gun until the boss started sniffing around). My brother still owns and hunts with that gun every year (and it is still his only shotgun).

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"Generally accepted" on two points---the gun's maker (Boss) and seller (Wicks)---is surely subordinate to the authorized biography, seven years of scholarly work by a distinguished writer, academic and friend.

"He chose a double-barreled Boss shotgun with a tight choke."

Specificity at this delicate juncture, authorized by EH's family and trustees, carries more weight than the contents of A&F records and the celebrated sceptical musings of Montaigne.

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Name a Great Writer that was not screwed up like a Soup Sandwich ? I can't think of one off the top of my head.


Mine's a tale that can't be told, my freedom I hold dear.


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Did this biographer measure the chokes? Do you really need tight chokes at that range?


A true sign of mental illness is any gun owner who would vote for an Anti-Gunner like Joe Biden.

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I'm trying to remember of Hotchner's book mentioned the gun. As to cut up parts of the gun used, I don't mean to question the ethics of the person who produced them put I suspect a cut up section of the gun would fetch a handy price and since there's really no provenance?

Truth is, It makes little difference. I wouldn't be interested in owning a useless peice of the suicide gun but I'd be honored to own one of Ernest's guns.

As to Hemingway being screwed up, I don't think he was exactly a role model but I suspect most of us would not look too good if a half dozen people chose to investigate every particle of our lives and report on that which was most "interesting."

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Originally Posted By: King Brown
"Generally accepted" on two points---the gun's maker (Boss) and seller (Wicks)---is surely subordinate to the authorized biography, seven years of scholarly work by a distinguished writer, academic and friend.

"He chose a double-barreled Boss shotgun with a tight choke."

Specificity at this delicate juncture, authorized by EH's family and trustees, carries more weight than the contents of A&F records and the celebrated sceptical musings of Montaigne.


King:
But what about the shotgun artifacts shown in an earlier post held by the firm that purportedly destroyed the gun? They do not appear to me to be from a Boss shotgun. I always look for a motive when tracing someting like this story and who whould be motivated to fake fragments from a destroyed suicide gun and to what end?
Jim


The 2nd Amendment IS an unalienable right.
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The JFK Library in Boston, MA holds a significant amount of EH material. Included are the photographs of Lloyd Arnold, who was the photographer for Sun Valley. His photos captured EH with many shotguns -- but no Boss.

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I dunno but maybe he used the Boss because it was not one of his favorite guns and he knew it would be destroyed.

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