It's no secret that gun technology has changed greatly over the last 25 years. New models and calibers are being introduced on a regular basis, and methods of using firearms for self defense, hunting, and sport are constantly being changed.
While many gun enthusiasts today prefer more "tactical" or modern sporting rifles, there is still a place in today's world for antique and antique-style firearms. It never hurts to put down the black finished and polymer furniture and journey back into the world of blued steel and wood stocks for awhile.
The Uses and Benefits of Older Technology
One of our favorite things about using historical weaponry is the connection to the past it provides. When holding an original 1871 Springfield Rolling Block, you’re transported to a different time and place, and there is an instant bond with the generations before us who have used that rifle.
Understanding where you come from helps you to understand your place in life and where you are heading. The same can be said of firearms. Understanding the transition from black powder muskets to Winchester lever actions to the modern AR-15 can give you a new appreciation for shooting.
For some, hunting is far more about skill than the latest technology. If you really want to test your skills and patience, try hunting using a black powder rifle. The level of satisfaction you feel when you’re successful may be far greater than with a modern rifle.
Black powder rifles and pistols have another advantage as well — since they are considered old (pre-1898) technology, no paperwork is needed for purchase. There is a learning curve to the loading and shooting process, but with a little training, anyone can enjoy the experience of black powder firearms.
If you've never used a black powder gun before, give it a try. It's a new, unique experience unlike anything else, and they're a blast to shoot.
Of course, there are other uses for older technology, too. The lever action rifle is still a popular hunting choice, and can make a dependable home defense rifle or ranch gun. Historical US Military firearms continue to have a huge following, and while prices can be high, there is a large variety available on the market.
If you're interested in shooting old guns for sport, there are several competitions specifically tailored to black powder rifles, guns of the old west, and historical military firearms. Be sure to see what is offered in your local area.
They may not shoot the fastest, the farthest, or the most accurately, but historical weapons provide something many modern guns cannot. They provide a connection to our own history, and in this day and age of more, better, and faster, many of us yearn for the simpler life of yesteryear.
While a black powder rifle can't turn back the clock completely, it can give you a brief moment of simplicity. For just a few moments, you can be transported back to when life moved slower and we took things one shot at a time.