Monday, April 20, 2015


Among the many "miscellaneous" items I've dug from Civil War camp and battle sites over the years is this palm-sized weapon. Generally made of brass, "brass knuckles" are supposed to give a pugilist an advantage during a fist fight. They are designed to fit through the fingers and are equipped with a rounded seat that rests in the palm. There is little doubt that a whop from a fist whose leading edge is metal would dispense a lot more damage than a fist composed of mere sinew and bone. The soldier who melted his bullets and poured himself this set of "lead knuckles" (soldiers reportedly did pour and use lead knuckles for self defense), however, probably inflicted more damage to his fingers than to the chin of his opponent. Lead is a soft metal, much softer than brass, and as is apparent in the subject, will bend (yield) with little effort. I'd bet this particular set of knuckles was not lost, but was discarded with "extreme prejudice."

Sunday, April 5, 2015


Though the picture sleeve is in rather rough shape, it is one of the harder-to-find Beatles 45 RPM sleeves. I came across it, along with several other Beatles records, at an estate sale this past weekend. The price was only $2.00 per record with sleeves, $1.00 without. I couldn't pass that up. The other sleeves are not quite so scarce, but the records are near mint. And at $2.00 apiece? I just hope I'm that fortunate at future sales.