Throwback Thursday: Audie Murphy's Colt Revolver

This wheelgun belonged to one of America's greatest 20th-century heroes.

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posted on April 4, 2024
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Audie Murphy's life had humble beginnings: Born in 1925 the son of Texas sharecroppers, he later went on to become America's most decorated World War II combat soldier, with a total of 33 medals and decorations, including the Medal of Honor. The Army veteran fought in nine theaters in Europe, and was released from active service in September 1945.

Shortly thereafter, his journey to Hollywood began when he was invited to visit actor James Cagney, who had seen him on the cover of Life magazine. Although his journey to Hollywood stardom was a long and difficult one, he brought the same tenacity and verve to his career as an actor as he had as a soldier. He starred in a total of 44 feature films, one of which, To Hell and Back, held Universal's record as highest grosser until it was broken by Jaws in 1975.

Murphy, a Texas boy at heart, spent most of his acting career doing Western movies. So it's no surprise that his gun of choice for those movies was a Colt 1873 Single Action Army revolver chambered in .45 Colt. The gun starred alongside Murphy in numerous Westerns. He even went so far as to have a custom spur modified hammer to facilitate thumb cocking during his gunfight sequences. 

This gun, along with dozens of other movie guns, is on display at the NRA National Firearms Museum 364 days a year (excepting Christmas). Entrance is free of charge and NRA membership is not required.

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