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Ruger Tinkerer
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My Grandad on my Dad’s side was an interesting man but he was somewhat reserved. I don’t remember him ever laughing or telling a joke but I’m sure he did. It just wasn’t a defining attribute. He loved to fish and camp in the summer and spend his evenings and the long cold winters of NW Iowa with his ham radio hobby. This photo I have of him is largely how I remember him - quietly enjoying a magazine. He enjoyed interacting with adults but us kids not so much. He was around 68 in this picture.

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That’s not to say he didn’t have a sense of humor and I’m glad I have a couple of things he made as a reminder of the kinds of things he found amusing, both related to fishing.

Here’s his “walleye”, one of his favorite fish.
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Grandad made up a lot of his lures that he would use to troll for pike and musky up in Canada. He couldn’t afford the big store bought spoons so he would hammer out a piece of brass and make up big spoons of his own. They worked just as well and I think he was proud of catching fish on his own spoons. One day he decided it would be funny to make this instead of a spoon.
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I saw these items this morning and got a little smile out of them. Grandad has been gone now for 25 years but these odd items do remind me of him and I’m glad I have them.

Anybody else have little family oddities that make no real sense outside of your own family context?
 

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I like those stories.

I don't have anything like that. I have an old jar from my grandpa that has no value or real story. I keep change in it. See?! Not interesting. 😆
Not interesting to anyone but you.
It is just a value-less jar.
But how often do you think of Grandpa when you use the jar?

I have a few "worthless" items from some of my ancestors.
They are absolutely priceless....to me.
 

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Wavefom ,

We seem to have come from the same line, just a different mold. ;) My Grandfather and Dad were a lot like that too.

My wife thinks I'm a hoarder. Those are old memories from my past.

I still have a box full of Ham Radio equipment from them. Only difference, instead of being up half the night talking, I e-mail my friends around the world.
 

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Ruger Tinkerer
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Discussion Starter #7
I think a lot of midwestern farmers were hams back in the day. Besides my Dad and Grandad who were hams I had several uncles and great uncles who were as well and most were farmers in Iowa and North Dakota and they all had regular schedules on the radio with each other. My Dad and I kept that going off and on over the last 40 years and when he passed away two years ago I requested and was given his call sign from the FCC. My older brother already took Grandad's call sign so both of those are still in the family. We're the last of a long line of hams but it doesn't look like anyone else is coming up in the next generation to carry on the tradition. And I have a lot of old ham gear boxed up too.
 

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When my Dad passed in 1991, I was given my Grandpops service revolver that he carried as a beat cop in the 30's and 40's in Philadelphia. It's a S&W hand loader in .38spl with a fairly nice nickel finish. It shoots just fine and I take it out on occasion just for fun. The neat thing is, my Son used it to qualify for his conceal carry permit and made a near perfect range score...I'm sure Grandpop was proud!
 

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Ruger Tinkerer
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Discussion Starter #9
When my Dad passed in 1991, I was given my Grandpops service revolver that he carried as a beat cop in the 30's and 40's in Philadelphia. It's a S&W hand loader in .38spl with a fairly nice nickel finish. It shoots just fine and I take it out on occasion just for fun. The neat thing is, my Son used it to qualify for his conceal carry permit and made a near perfect range score...I'm sure Grandpop was proud!
That's very cool. My Grandad did some hunting but more as a younger man. I heard the stories of how thick the pheasants were in Iowa back before they started mowing all the swales on the roads with big tractor mounted mowing rigs. He would walk the fence lines with a shotgun and kick up pheasants for the family dinner table. Deer were scarce in Iowa back then and Iowa didn't even have a deer season until 1953. Hunting was for food and was mostly rabbits, squirrels and pheasants. In the late 1940s he went on a trip up into Canada in the fall with a couple of other relatives for a fishing and hunting trip. First they fished for a few days and then they wanted to hunt deer. They knew they would be required by Canadian regs to hire a guide to hunt so they found a general store and bought their necessary permits and asked the owner for a recommendation for a guide. They were given a name and they found the man and he agreed to a fee for guiding them on their hunt. Their hunt was going well and the group had taken a couple of deer when a Mountie came into camp to check out their activities. It turned out the man who was their guide was not licensed as a guide so their hunting was illegal. The RCMP confiscated their deer and their rifles and gave everyone a fine. These guys were not affluent sportsmen but subsistence farmers that were there for some fun but also counting on the fish and venison for food. On top of losing their venison they had to pay the fines and then surrender their firearms. It took some time and effort to eventually get their rifles returned and my Grandad swore he would never hunt in Canada again. And he didn't. He fished there often but refused to hunt there. After he got his 30-30 lever action back from the RCMP he sold it and bought a Remington bolt action rifle in 30-06 and said he wanted to go out west and hunt with it. He never did. He never even mounted a scope on it. Back in the 1970s my Dad bought it off of him and put a scope and a sling on it and began to use it. I can remember my Dad buying a Lee handloader set up for 30-06 just for that rifle. I have that rifle now so I do have a firearm that once belonged to my Grandad but I really think of it more as my Dad's rifle than his.

I'm pretty sure this is that rifle held by my son about 10 years ago. My Dad took him deer hunting a few times on that visit.

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