Originally featured in Points West magazine in Summer 2011
Winchester Sporting Rifle made for Zane Grey
One of the most lavishly embellished firearms in the Cody Firearms Museum is Zane Grey’s Winchester Model 1895 Deluxe Lever Action Sporting Rifle. The famous writer of western fiction received it from the Winchester Repeating Arms Company in 1924 in recognition, not only of his remarkable success as an author, but also for his accomplishments as an outstanding athlete and avid outdoorsman. Master engraver Clundt Philip engraved the gun extensively and inlaid its receiver in gold with the entwined initials “ZG,” a bear, and an elk.
Known widely for his best-selling Riders of the Purple Sage, Grey wrote more than one hundred books on the American West, along with hundreds more magazine articles and published essays on a wide range of subjects. His works had second lives in more than one hundred movies, a television episode, and a television series. Grey was a star baseball player, a world-renowned fisherman, and a professional dentist.
The rifle, displayed with its original leather carrying case, is chambered for the highly versatile .30-06 center fire cartridge—uniquely appropriate for a celebrity whose versatility was among his most remarkable attributes.
Donated in Loving Memory of Robert Jesse Moore by his family. 1991.1.1