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Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 5
OP Offline

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 5
I just learned that my Westley Richards double probably went to India. In a letter from Westley Richards, they state: "A .500 Lefauchaux action double barrel rifle fitted with top rib that was engine turned. The rifle was stock with no cheekpiece, a rounded pistol grip and had a horn heel plate. The rifle was completed for P. Orr & Sons on behalf of W. C. Wood Esq in October 1883..."
Anyone ever heard of W. C. Wood?

Texas Bill

Joined: May 2006
Posts: 625

Joined: May 2006
Posts: 625
Hello Bill,

Seeing as how this gun was ordered on behalf of the customer by an Indian Gun Dealer it's highly likely that it isn't for anyone famous. Sportsmen going out to hunt would usually have their guns tailored to their requirements before leaving.

This suggests that Mr Wood was more of a casual hunter and the likelyhood is that he was either an Army Officer of one of the Colonial Civil Servants of whom there were thousands.

Getting home leave in India at that time was unheard of, because of the journey times from there to Britain and back. It was usual for leave to be taken 'Up Country' in cooler areas, and in those days there was little 'hanky panky' between the sexes, to keep them occupied, for to get caught was to be cited in a nasty divorce case and be discharged with ignimony from either Service, never to get a respectable job again. So people took up various hobbies. Many turned to Natural History specimen collecting and others to hunting.

So, I think it's more likely Mr Wood was a Civil Servant than a military man, he would have given his rank when ordering it. I have no idea if the Colonial Records of employees for that time exist or where they are. But, the British Civil Service being what it is, there's bound to be a paper trail somewhere. The Colonial Service would come under the British Governments 'Foreign Office' in a department known as the Colonial Office.

Not much help I'm afraid just some reasoned supposition, still it may lead somewhere. Good Luck.


Last edited by Harry Eales; 09/07/11 05:54 AM.

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