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Book Review: Guns of Outlaws: Weapons of the American Bad Man

Guns of Outlaws: Weapons of the American Bad Man. Gerry and Janet Souter. Zenith Press, China, November 15, 2014. Hardcover, 263 pages. 

Reviewed by Ed Marohn.

If you love history of outlaws then, you will enjoy reading Guns of Outlaws: Weapons of the American Bad Man. It is full of researched anecdotes by authors Gerry and Janet Souter that illustrate how weapons empowered the villains of the Old West to the mob in Chicago and how lawmen countered these deadly criminals.

Before the Youngers and Jesse and Frank James came into their elevated status as outlaws, the book starts with the villains, such as Joseph Thompson Hare and The Horrible Harpes. The book proceeds rapidly bad guy by bad guy to the Johnson County War and ends in the nineteenth century with Wyatt Earp. Then it jumps into crimes of the twentieth century, where you will discover new facts about many outlaws, including Bonnie and Clyde and John Dillinger.

The common thread throughout the book that ties the outlaws to the pursuing lawmen are the weapons, mostly handguns developed throughout the 1800s and 1900s. Pictures abound of both outlaws and the handguns they used.

The authors have combined their skills in art, photography, and graphic arts to augment their writing of this history. The end result is a creative and unique book. Whether you are a historian, a gun enthusiast, a gun collector, or even a hunter, this book is a gem with its collection of color and black-and-white photographs and drawings of various weapons used by the historical characters depicted in the book.


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