Handgun Radio 225 - 1890's Loadouts with Weerd Beard, Hickok45 & John!

Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wild woods of Central Maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world.


This week, we discuss the 1890-1900 loadout entries that we’ve received and have a special guest to talk about some of them!

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Week in Review:

Skipping most of the week in review because of the emails

-Made Jerky

-Ice Tray AK47

Drink Segment: Sazerac   2oz Rye (Brandy or Bourban can be Substituted)

A few dashes of Absinthe (I use Pernod as a substitution)

A few Dashes of Peychaud's Bitters

Serve in a small Rocks glass

Garnish with a Lemon twist

Main Topic: 1890’s Loadouts

So, here are the contest rules. We arent choosing whether anyones loadout is good or bad, its going to be a random choice. We will choose at the end. 1890 to 1900 will be accepted. Ours will be at the end (Except for Hickoks)

Hickok45’s Loadout:

John Hickoks Loadout:


I would go with a FN 1900 with a derringer back up. My dress would be dress pants and shirt with a vest and pocket watch. Anyways keep up the great work.
John F


Here's my 1899 load out. I'm gonna go cutting edge and get a Smith and Wesson 1899 hand ejector in .38 special, probably a 6" in a shoulder holster, and for my rifle go with a Winchester  1895 in a carbine length chambered in .30-40 Krag.


My  (late) 1890’s loadout:
Webley Revolver in 455.   Shoulder holster.
Lee Enfield Cavalry Carbine, .303.
Winchester 1890 pump rifle, in .22 WRF.  
Grey “windowpane” wool trousers w/ braces, vest and coat.   
Black wool flat cap.
Brown leather paddock boots.
Brown linen pocket square.
Pocketknife with horn grip, clip and wharncliffe blades.
Silver pocket watch and flask of Schnapps.  
ENORMOUS handlebar moustache.
...the 1890 is included because I have one in .22 WRF.  Inherited it from my grandfather. It shows it’s age, and the bore looks like a sewer pipe, but it still shoots minute of grouse head.  
Enjoy your podcast.  Thanks for producing content that isn’t constant politics, plastics, or AR-15s.

Ron B:

Okay fellows, here it is:

1. Merwin & Hulbert Army model in 44-40 carried in the shoulder holster under my wool coat. This model features the “skull-crusher” tab on the end of grip and is perfect for saloon fights. The opposite shoulder strap of my rig holds 12 additional 44-40 rounds.

2. On my left thigh (I’m a lefty) is a Winchester 1894 in the Mares Leg configuration. It’s also in 44-40. I own a Rossi 94 Ranch Hand in .45 LC and this is a superb SBR even though it’s classed a pistol. Bullets are compatible with my M&H and the belt rig is looped for 12 additional cartridges.

3. On my right hip is a 1896 Broomhandle Mauser in 7.63mm. It’s carried in the signature shoulder stock carrier holster. This rig carries an additional 10 rounds in the leather sheath for the wooden stock in addition to the 10 rounds in the pistol.

4. I’m sporting fine leather cowboy boots, also hand made like the holsters and gun belt. In my left boot is a 6-inch Bowie knife and in my right boot is a Remington derringer in .41 Remington, two shot back-up.

5. What was unique back in those days was the quality of leather goods. Mens’ lives depended on holsters, belts, saddles and such. My custom leather rigs ensure I can move comfortably and secure my five weapons.

I spend more time in town than the open range. My open range guns are on my horse.

The M&H choice was inspired by an episode of “Creepy” magazine from my youth and I heard Weird refer to that comic before. Keep up the good work.Ron From AL

Kevin G:

ope this finds you both well.  I really like the show and enjoy it even more knowing that you are from New England.

I have given a lot of thought to my load out and really enjoyed having to think outside of the box.  This is something that you should definitely do more of on the show. Either way here I go.

I would carry a Colt Single Action Army in 45 Colt.  My first reaction was to go with the Smith and Wesson Model 3 but after thinking about it I went with the SAA. Due to the way the Model 3 breaks open and ejects spend cases I was concerned over longevity and problems out in the field.  Dirt, grit, moisture and lack of cleaning gave me pause when it came to the reliability of this pistol. Since the cylinder stays within the gun I have less concern over mechanical failures with the SAA. Understanding that the Model 3 was utilized heavily by the cavalry and needed to be rugged I am still confident in my decision.

For a rifle I'd carry an original Henry in 44 Henry. After the Civil War,  and since it would be out of production, there would be a surplus of parts and rifles. With the new Winchesters being out in the 1890s, I'd have less competition for maintenance parts.

I'd ride a Haflinger horse due to their size and draft capabilities if needed. I'd also have a dog, nothing huge but big enough to scare up game and cute enough to help me land some loose moraled women when I blew into town for supplies and a night of rabble rousing.

Hope this helps with your lit.


I figured I'd give you guys what I think I'd wear around 1900

I decided to list both what I'd wear in the "more civilized" areas in the east and the frontier in the west.

For the east, I would probably be wearing a 3 piece suit and black leather shoes.  For outerwear, I'd have a bowler hat and wool overcoat for cold weather. I would have a pocket watch on a chain in my vest pocket, and probably a two blade pen knife in a pocket... although that might change from day to day.  Ask Weerd about my knife habit.

As far as defense goes, I would like to carry a Schofield, probably in 44-40, in a shoulder holster.  Of course, it was considered in poor taste at the time to carry openly. I'd have a Smith and Wesson model 2 in 38S&W in my pocket, when I couldn't comfortably carry the Schofield or as a backup.  I would also carry a cane made of hardwood with a brass knob.

As for being on the frontier, the firearms wouldn't change much.  I'd still go with the Schofield. This time definitely in 44-40, to match the ammo in my lever gun (either a Winchester 1873 or Marlin 1874, which ever I could get the best deal on).  It would be carried on my right side in a belt holster on a gun belt. This way, I could easily remove it when entering areas that frowned on carrying. On the left side of the gun belt would be a bowie knife.  Just to change things up a bit, I'd have a Marlin 38 standard in 38S&W carried either in a vest pocket or boot. I'd have a small boot knife in the other boot.

When it comes to clothes, and other things, I'd probably wear a button down shirt and vest, jeans, and boots.  I'd also wear a Stetson and duster, when the weather calls for it. I'd have a pocket watch on a chain in my vest pocket, and definitely have a stockman's knife also riding in a pocket.

Thanks for the interesting thought experiment, hope you guys are having a good day!

Dave D:

Hey Guys,

Thanks for your work on the podcast. As usual, I'm running behind so I just listened to episode 220. My turn of the century load out would fall into one of 3 categories.

My most likely situation is a farmer somewhere in the southeast US. Normal clothes would be a union suit, linen or cotton shirt with cotton duck or denim pants held up with suspenders. In this situation I probably would only have one gun as affording a collection would be hard. If I had a rifle, it would be a old heavily used 1873 Winchester in 32-20, but the handgun option would be a Smith and Wesson safety hammerless in .38 S&W carried in a plain leather belt and simple holster or just shoved into a pocket.

The second scenario I thought of was a frontier load out. If I was a hunter or trapper west of the Mississippi, logistics would dictate a lot of what I chose. Clothing would likely be a combination of buckskin, denim and wool. Trapping or smaller game hunting load out would look like an 1894 Winchester rifle and a Colt New service revolver or a Remington model 1890 all in 44-40. If I was hunting large game, I would swap out the Winchester for a trapdoor Springfield in 45-70. Most times my pack mule would carry the rifles but the pistol would be in a leather flap style holster on an ammo belt carried on the waist.

My money is no object scenario finds me a "Gentlemen of Leisure" in Philadelphia or New York. I made several fortunes in the Absinthe import market (Wink to Weerd). I'm decked out in tailored suits and a top hat. Bowler hats are not my cup of tea. My main gun would be a Browning M1900 in 32 ACP. It would be nickel plated and ornately engraved. I would carry it in a shoulder holster (those tailored suits being designed to conceal). My backup piece would be a two shot derringer in 41 rimfire, also highly engraved but carried in a vest pocket.

Thanks again for the thought experiment.

Ryan Michad:

-Sidearm: Merwin & Hulbert in .44-40 (4 inch Barrel)

-Other Sidearm: Snubby Colt Thunderer (M1878) Double Action in .44-40

-Shotgun: 1897 Winchester Pump

-Rifle: Winchester 1892 .44-40

-Deep Conceal: Webley Bulldog in .442

Weerd Beard:

-Sidearms:  Large Merwin & Hulbert 3rd Model Double-Action in .44-40 5-inch Barrel

Medium S&W Safety Hammerless Top-Break in .38 S&W

Small  S&W Model 1 .22 Short

-Carbine  Colt Lightning Carbine in .44-40

-Rifle Remington Rolling Block in either .45-70, .45-110, or .50-70

-Shotgun 10 Ga Side-By-Side Coach Gun


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