End-of-Hunting-Season Gun Cleaning
Kevin Felts 12.14.17
Days are growing shorter, weather is getting colder, and snow is falling. People find a number of reasons to stay inside. This often means that for a lot of hunters, the season is over. Not that the actual season is over, but they’ve either bagged a deer, given up, or are getting ready for Christmas and New Year celebrations. the late season is usually for the diehards, or hunters hoping to bag a late season buck.
Before unloading the firearms and putting them in the gun safe, take a few minutes to give them a good cleaning. This ceremony is not just about cleaning, it is about showing your firearms respect. Guns are more than “just” guns. They represent heritage, family history, and memories.
For example, in another article we talked about a shotgun my dad bought me sometime around 1981 or 1982. To let that shotgun rust would be a disservice to mom and dad. They worked for the money that bought that shotgun, and the very least I can do is keep it clean. Hopefully, that shotgun will be passed down to my children and grandchildren.
Maybe one day I will take my granddaughters squirrel hunting, and tell them how their great-grandparents bought me this shotgun 15 years before their mother was born. That is the sort of memories and heritage firearms represent.
Some people may think that is a silly way to look at firearms. Then again, we could say that about anything. Pass a firearm down for a couple of generations and it becomes a prized possession. How many readers have a firearm that belonged to their great-grandparents, or even their grandparents?
The most prized firearm in my collection is a single-shot 16 gauge Harrington and Richardson shotgun which belonged to my great grandmother. When the shotgun was given to her by my great-great-grandparents, my great-grandmother carved her name and date into the stock: 2-5-35. During the Great Depression, how many times did that shotgun put dinner on the table?
So before the firearms are put up for the season, give them a good cleaning. Maybe your descendants will treasure them as much as you do.