Thursday, June 13, 2013


Webley Fosbery has been around recently, and I saw this latest treatment on Forgotten Weapons.  And I am re-reading The Maltese Falcon.

Guess what pistol is use to off Sam Spades partner, Miles Archer?  It'd be like me writing a detective story and someone is shot with a Medusa.  And I read this on the same day I saw thw blog post.  Serendipitous.

That Fosbery sure is an odd duck of a pistol.  To stretch the metaphor, neither fish nor fowl.  I was thinking, "why would you DO that?  A Franken-Revolver monstosity."   Then it occurred to me.  You couldn't just select a semi-auto pistol at the time.  There was none sitting around.  They were all being developed concurrently.  Colonel Fosbery did his tinkering on a Colt SAA.  Browning and Lugers were around but they were so new they squeaked.

Just thought it interesting.

So Archie takes one in the pump from a Webley Fosbery, falls backwards over a waist high horizontally boarded fence, knocking loose the top rail.  And Sam Spade doesn't normally carry a gun on him, and comes to the scene from a sound sleep wearing a thin union suit under his suit, gartered socks, tweed overcoat, and hat, of course.  Only thing in his pockets is cigarette papers, Durham tobacco, and money.  Not even a pen knife.


Also, Hammett's detectives often smoked these Fatimas when they bought a pack.  I thought he might have made them up.  Hammett was no Stephen King, always name dropping brands and trademarks.  A sign was an "ad for Gasoline" rather than a "Esso sign."  Except for cigarettes.  Those get named.  Minute detail on a man's jewelry, but never the man's car.  A square cut ruby with 4 surround baguette cut diamond holding his ascot?  Great.  A $5 gold piece from 1895 as a tie tack?  Fine.  Was he driving a DeSoto or a Pontiac?  Dunno.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nor was Hammett Ian Fleming...
ALWAYS mentioning specific brands, hence the World-wide affection for the Walther PPK.