The BBCW has acquired the Lone Ranger revolver belonging to actor John Hart; it is on display in the center’s Cody Firearms Museum.
Hart carried the Colt .45, a single-action Army revolver, when he portrayed “the masked man” in the original series between 1952-54. It was one of several he used throughout his acting career.
The firearm’s coverage engraving and steer head ivory grips, completed by master engraver Ben Shostle, make this firearm particularly striking. To any lover of Westerns and firearms, this gun is truly a must see.
In his early career, Hart appeared mostly in Westerns. He played many minor roles in some fairly well-known films, but audiences remember him most for replacing Clayton Moore in 1952 for 52 episodes over two seasons of the television show “The Lone Ranger” when Moore demanded a higher salary.
Hart, who died at 91 in 2009, returned to the role in 1981 for a guest spot in the TV series “The Greatest American Hero” and again in 1982 for a role on “Happy Days.”
He played a newspaper editor in the 1981 film “The Legend of the Lone Ranger,” which also flopped at the box office.
Along with the revolver, the center also acquired autographed photos of Hart in costume and an unconventional cookbook, “Cowboys in the Kitchen,” that he penned in the 1990s. The book is more of an anecdotal memoir of Hollywood tales, cheeky hunting advice and even a section on “women and liquor.”
This book provides some levity in the kitchen and shows off the personality of the man behind the gun.
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