Research Letters- What to Expect

Most 0-2 grade gun records do not have names attached. If a gun came back for repair the odds go way up of finding a owners name. Repairs are only in the order books. The chances of a name being in the order do go up on the grade 4 guns or higher but it is still less than 30 percent. 

The PGCA has copies of the original Parker Bros. Order Books, Stock Books as well as the IBM cards that were used by Remington. The information varies greatly depending on the serial number range.

The Order Books contain the date of the order, dealer, salesmen (if there is one), gauge, barrel length, grip, price, barrel steel and hammerless or hammer. The grade is not mentioned in most orders. The grade is determined by barrel steel and price. On special order guns, there may be additional information i.e. stock dimensions, chokes, extra barrels, ivory beads, pads and weight. The name of the customer may be in the order but not in all cases. Sometimes the gun is shipped directly to the customer and in that case the customerís name and address will be in the order. A very small percentage of guns are special order. The Order Books run from No. 1 to No 101. Order Book 101 covers a time period through the 1920ís and the early 1930ís but it contains mostly credits and repairs. There are 5 missing books, 39, 49, 72, 83, and 93. It appears there was no Order book 39 since there is not a gap in the order numbers. We can not do a research letter from a credit or repair because the indicative information about the gun is left out. Order Book 100 ends in Nov 1919 with serial number 189,140. Guns that were ordered by the large dealers for inventory have your basic information, even on high grades. In the years between 1890 and 1910, there are many very large orders by the major dealers. There is one order by Simmons Hardware in St. Louis that has over 300 guns. The order is over 18 pages and there is just one line for each gun. The serial numbers in the Order books are random and the data base is needed to find a gun. There are 6 Order Books for just repairs. It is not uncommon on earlier guns to see them returned to Parker Bros. several times for adjustments or repairs. There is a BHE that went back to Parker several times and now has a replacement stock and replacement barrels. Replacement barrels may be of different steel than the original. Since the Order books end in December 31, 1919, we do not have any repair records after this date.

The Stock books were used by Parker Bros. to record the work on each individual gun as it progressed through the manufacturing process. The gauge, grade, barrel length, stock dimensions, grip and options are in the stock book. The choke pattern information is in some of the stock books but not all. The page ends where the pattern information starts. The actual choke i.e. Modified or Full is not listed in the stock book, just the pattern information. An example would be 275 #7 pellets in a 30Ē circle @ 40 yards. The guns are listed in numerical order so a data base is not needed. Chamber length is listed in some cases. We have stock books 1-82 but there are 31 books missing in the middle. The last serial number in book 82 is 238934. This gun was completed January 24, 1936, and it is an SC Single Barrel Trap. A list of the stock books with the serial numbers they contain is in the Serialization book on pages 58 and 59. The missing books are also listed. For serial numbers between 189140 and 234,xxx the research will be done from the stock books unless we have an entry in Order Book 101 or a hang tag. Remember, that you are not going to get the information that is available in the Order Books.

The Remington IBM cards start in the 234,xxx range and end with 241,6xx. The cards have the grade, gauge, barrel length and date completed. They may have the options listed but not always. I have seen cards that do not list the options and the stock book does. Options are Parker SST, Vent Rib, extra barrels and Trap Forend. The card may also list the dealer but there is no address. I have also seen a few cards that indicate the gun is a skeet model. I have also seen skeet guns that are not listed as skeet on the IBM card. The card does not indicate the grip or butt configuration. I am frequently asked about a checkered butt or skeleton butt plate. This information is not listed. Letters done from the IBM cards will not contain stock dimensions, butt information, chokes or special requests. Very few have an individualís name listed. There are no repairs in the IBM cards.