Top 5 famous guns sold at auction - inspired by Hunter S Thompson

paulfrasercollectibles

2015-06-26 13:10:23

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Top 5 famous guns sold at auction - inspired by Hunter S Thompson

Today's top 5 marks the 8th anniversary of the death of novelist and gun enthusiast Hunter S Thompson

"I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, insanity or violence to anyone," remarked Hunter Stockton Thompson, "but they've always worked for me."

Hunter S Thompson in 1988. The author was known for his love of firearms, as well as his lifelong use of alcohol and drugs

Eight years ago today, the iconoclastic writer Hunter S Thompson, best known for his bourbon-steeped contributions to the gonzo movement, as well as his 1972 novel, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, died aged 67. A fervent gun enthusiast and lifelong member of the National Rifle Association, Hunter S ended his own life in the only way he saw fit - a single bullet to the head. The sound of the fatal shot reportedly resembled that of a book falling.

In line with his wishes, Thompson's ashes were fired from a custom-designed cannon on August 20, 2008.

Here's the top 5 guns of famous owners ever auctioned.

  1. Dan Kelly's East India Company cavalry pistol - $126,500

Ned Kelly's brother's gunDan Kellys gun may have been used at the infamous Kelly gangs showdown against the police

Dan Kelly, the youngest brother of infamous Australian outlaw Ned Kelly, may or may not have ownedthis shotgun, which sold to a private collector for $126,500 in November 2012.

Legend has it that having been discovered in the late 19th century on the banks of the Murrimbidgee River, New South Wales, the gun was thoroughly cleaned, only to reveal the words Dan Kelly and "1876" roughly carved into the walnut stock.

The gun's patina of intrigue, and the ambiguity as to whether or not it actually belonged to Dan, seems appropriate to the shadowy legacy of the man himself.

  1. Butch Cassidy's Colt revolver - $175,000

Butch Cassidy Colt SAAButch Cassidy was a prominent member of the train and bank robbing Wild Bunch gang

Wild West outlaw and notorious bank robber Butch Cassidy turned in this Colt revolver in 1899 as part of an attempt at a gun amnesty from the state's governor. This piece of the Old West's powerful mythos sold for $175,000 in September 2012.

  1. Hemmingway's Double Rifle - $340,000

Hemmingway gun auctionHemmingway was a known hunter and gun enthusiast throughout his life

Guns and hunting shaped and defined huge swathes of Ernest Hemmingway's (1899-1961) life.His death, like Thompson's, was the consequence of a self-inflicted single shotgun blast. Book length works have been dedicated to the contents of the literary giant's gun cabinet, which was well-stocked for two out of three of his favourite pastimes: hunting, shooting and fishing.

The American author's .577 Nitro Express Westley Richards Double Rifle sold for $340,000 in March 2011.

  1. Buffalo Bill's Remington revolver - $239,000

Buffalo bill remington revolverWilliam Frederick Cody earned the name Buffalo Bill after shooting 4,280 buffalo in 18 months

Buffalo Bill was an American soldier, bison hunter and show man during the latter half of the 19th century. One of the most famous and colourful figures of the Old West, Buffalo Bill found fame with his touring shows, which featured cowboys, roughriders, Native Americans and sharp shooters.

His US civil war issue Remington New Model Army .44 sold for $239,000 in June 2012.

  1. Bonnie and Clyde's guns - $504,000

Bonnie and Clyde gun auctionThe aftermath of the fatal shootout in 1934 it was from this scene that Bonnie and Clydes shotguns were recovered

Two guns that were retrieved from the bodies of outlaw couple Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow sold as part of an online gangster auction in September 2012. Parker's snub nosed .38 Colt Detective Special ($246,000) and Barrow's Colt Model 1911 ($240,000) appeared destined to remain together when they were bought by a single bidder for a total of $504,000.

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