Newsletter Archives for the V.G.C.A.

V.G.C.A. NEWS April, 2002

This Month's Topics:

General Election February Meeting
Show and Tell New Members Next Meeting
Gun Show Secretary's Subtleties President's Corner

General. This Newsletter reports on the meeting in February and our Gun Show in March. There will be no meeting in June, but there will be the Annual Picnic; and there will be no meeting in July. The picnic will be on June 1st at the NORVA facility west of Route 81. Directions on how to get there will be included with the next Newsletter.

Election. More than 50 percent of the members who received ballots voted, and Addison Hurst was reelected by a margin of 146 to 27. The other three Officer positions were uncontested, and Jim Burgess is the new Vice President. Yours truly is still the Secretary for just two more years, and Ed Costello is still the Treasurer.

February Meeting. Addison presented the program, and we all learned a great deal about Trapdoor rifles. He brought about 25 of his personal rifles, and some others were talked about during Show and Tell.

Addison and Phil Hill talked about the upcoming (now past March show) show, and volunteers were assigned duties. Phil had a meeting with some of the volunteers before the regular meeting and it helped immensely during the show. I failed to announce the premeeting in the last Newsletter and apologize for whatever inconvenience it caused. Phil didn't beat me up so I assume it didn't hurt his Herculean effort too much.

Phil is our Show Chairman. Gary Holderman is the overall Committee Chairman, Jim Burgess is in charge of setup and takedown, and Emory Hackman is responsible for Security. It was announced that for the first time we would have paid Security to assist our volunteers (more on that later).

Show and Tell. This part of the meeting was highlighted by the youngest presenter that ever stood up in front of the VGCA membership. At first, with the help of her daddy, and then without his help, four-and-a-half year old Adele Fleischman showed us her Belgian made Velodog revolver. What is even better, she wants to return and show us another of her guns.

Bob Sears told the crowd how the Trapdoor mechanism works and showed us one of the three .22 Hornets that were made in 1930, which were the first. Emory and I showed our 1868 trapdoors, and Sonny Laine showed an 1868 cadet version.

The next comment emphasizes the varied interest and vast knowledge represented in the membership of the VGCA. Larry Hare proudly presented a Winchester .22 that he had bought at 5:30 that afternoon. When Bob Sears saw the rifle he proudly told us that he was the designer of the rifle.

Julian from Charlottesville showed an 1873 Trapdoor, and Bill Chronister showed a Kriko .22 made in Germany that was made to look like a German sniper rifle. Then Phil Schrier showed a movie rifle and Art Caporn some WWI posters.

New Members. Three new members were welcomed at the meeting: Mastin Cooke, Randy Mauck, and W. Richard Wardian.

Next Meeting. The next meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. on 25 April at the NRA Headquarters. Bert Sours will present the program about Marlin rifles. It is also possible, and please note the "maybe," that we may be able to see the Guns of the Reel West that are presently on display in the museum.

Gun Show. This was our most tightly run show. We are approaching the security and discipline that we see at some other out-of-State shows. For those of you who don't know, we have VGCA members spend both nights at the show. Ed Costello and Gary Holderman always stay, and this year they had the company of Art Schindler, Peter Cook, and Bill York. Pete and Bill drove down from Connecticut to help out. They were also part of the daytime Security and Safety Teams consisting of Jeff Cummins, Bill King, Art Capman, Julian Aytlou, Charlie Rausch, Con Rice, and Ernie Lyles. I know there were others, but they didn't sign the sheet so I don't know who they were.

This was the first time we ever had paid Security guards and it was worth every nickel. On Saturday somebody that some of the local dealers refer to as the Vulture managed to sneak in the front door a few minutes before closing. I saw him make his way down the aisle next to the snack bar. He stopped in front of Ed Costello's table and when he saw me watching him, he went into the men's room. I asked the Guard (Al) if he saw him and he replied that he was going to get him when the Vulture came out. AJ stopped him and the Vulture said that he was there to see someone. He said the same thing in September when Phil and I caught him. Then he said that he was going to buy some books. Each time he opened his mouth I reminded him that the show was closed. When he tried to get around AJ, AJ told him that there was only one place he was going and that was out the door. The Vulture still didn't believe what was happening to him as a big hand was placed on his shoulder and he was led out the door next to the snackbar.

There was another person who tried to get into the show as the Table Renters were packing up on Sunday. This guy always has his little daughter with him.

This time there were no side-door gate crashers, no attendee walked around with an unchecked gun, and our Security was better than ever. The two that made it into the show at closing are experts at doing so. The important thing is that they were caught and escorted out before anything could be taken. Nobody reported anything stolen this time.

The displays were once again outstanding. First place went to Vince Rausch and Military Rifles of Japan 1800-1945; second place went to David Hensley for Armalite: Then and Now; third place went to Joe Cusumano with A Few Springfield Trapdoors. Judges' awards were as follows: Pete Roberts took first place with S&W N-Frame Pre-Model Target Pistols; Marc Gorelick and Bill Chronister shared a display and second place with Military .22 Caliber Training Rifles; and Kelly Cook took third place with his Colt .22 Automatic Pistols. All of the displays were outstanding, and congratulations go to the winners and to the others who took the time and effort to share their collections.

Secretary's Subtleties. Our shows are getting better and better. I go to shows out of State and can tell you that we have come a long way. It is due to the hard work of a few that the many are able to benefit. In addition to the members of the Executive Committee there are some who are always there helping, but there still are not enough. Phil Hill, Jim Burgess, Gary Holderman, and Emory Hackman always go above and beyond what is necessary and, with the help of a few, make it all work.

We bad plenty of help at all the doors and in setting up. Jim Burgess's team of Larry Hare, Bill Chronister, Marc Gorelick, Vernon Cochrane, Richard Baker, Ben Sims, Gary Holderman, and Bill King had everything ready when the table renters started arriving.

Closedown, however, was more than lacking. In fact, it was downright sad. When Kelly Cook and I finished hauling our guns to our vehicles, there were only five people moving and stacking tables: Jim Burgess, Vernon Cochrane, Art Schindler, Dave McKenzie, and Tom McMichael. Note the age bracket of that group folks. Seeing Jim Burgess carrying tables on his back all by himself is just plain not right. Cleanup ended this way. Jim Burgess, Kelly Cook, and I were on our hands and knees with boxes picking the trash off the carpeted portion of the floor. Where in the hell were the rest of the local folks?

Larry Byrd and some of the Maryland members came in looking to help. Bill York and Pete Cook came down from Connecticut to help. John Wallace came up from North Carolina to help. I say again local Virginia members, where were the rest of you??

Phil Hill and I talked about it and have the same thoughts. Many of you talk about the possibility of having two or more shows each year, but who would do the work. We see the same names mentioned over and over. `Nuff said!!

President's Corner.  I want to begin by thanking everyone who pitched in and helped make our Gun Show a success. In some areas we had more help then ever, but as Mike said (actually, you don't want to know what he really said), we need more help in some areas, especially cleanup.

Next, I want to express my thanks, and the thanks of the VGCA, to Phil Hill. Phil spends more time than you want to know in making our shows the successful events that they are. With the continuing help of many, especially Jim Burgess and Gary Holderman, Phil makes it all work. I found some VGCA "Thank you plaques' and I plan to present an engraved plaque to Phil at the meeting in April.

I would again like to encourage all of you to consider presenting a program. My goal is to keep the quality at a high level, and with the success of the Show and Tell Program of a couple of months ago, it is an easily attainable goal. There is more knowledge about our hobby in this Association than Carter has pills, so call me and see when we can schedule you. Believe me, if little Adele Fleischman and I can do it, so can you. You do not need a lot of guns to make a presentation, just the willingness to step up and do it. Just standing up there is learning and teaching. That's what makes it fun. Our members are like sponges when information comes along. The knowledge shared at each program is always awesome.

Summer is almost upon us, and some of you will be doing some traveling with some of it within the confines of Virginia. If you find a place that looks like a good place to have a show, please get as much information as you can and contact me.

The picnic is always fun. Please plan to attend. There will be sign-up sheets at the next meeting to give us an idea of how much meat Ed Johnson has to barbecue. As always, meat and drinks will be provided and the attendees provide enough to feed themselves and four others. The quality of what you folks bring never ceases to amaze.

Lastly, I want to thank all of you who supported me for a second term as your VGCA President. I am proud that you have confidence in my ability to run this organization as you want it run, and I can promise you NOTHING than more of the same effort. The members of the Executive Committee and I have spent many hours trying to make your meetings more than enjoyable and your shows safer and better. So far, we have been successful, and, with your continued support, we will continue. To those of you who did not support me, well, I am sorry if you are disappointed; but please remember what Roberts Rules say: "The minority has the right to be heard, but the majority has the right to decide." The "majority" has spoken, so let's get on with it and make this organization even better than it is. --Addison