[Guest Post] Matt's Ruger Blackhawk .45

Steve Johnson
by Steve Johnson

[ I am pleased to present this guest post written by Matt Green ]

This Ruger .45 my Dad left me is one of the first weapons I ever fired.

My grandparents had a farm in central Minnesota, near St. Cloud, and we would drive the two hours to visit every month or six weeks or so. Nearby was an old iron bridge, crosshatched with braces, bedded with wood that beginning to rot as the bridge neared the end of its first century of usefulness. The newer highway bridge went over the slow moving creek a couple of hundred yards upstream, so the metal bridge on the dirt road was relegated to cars and small trucks. It was too small for any modern farm machinery to pass across it.

But it was a great place to learn how to shoot. Dad would bring out his Ruger Mk1 .22 and this Blackhawk, and my three brothers and I would take turns shooting pop cans and empty ammo boxes floating in the river, tossed in on the upstream side of the bridge. Dad would occasionally take a turn with the .22, but he mainly used his .45, usually stoked with ACP ammo, since it was less expensive than Long Colt. It was also a way for him to see if we’d been fooling with his pistols in his absence, as he caught my younger brother once when he hadn’t put the ACP cylinder back in. Dad loaded a .45 ACP round, and it dropped deep into the LC cylinder. One look at the bunch of us, and he knew which brother was guilty.

When we exhausted the .22 ammo, we’d each get a cylinder full of .45 to shoot, or most of one, since five rounds each made the box come out even. It was harder to shoot well than the .22, and much louder (I don’t remember that we bothered with ear protection back then), but it was very satisfying to shoot it well and have Dad comment as much.

I miss him, and think of him whenever I shoot the old Ruger, or really, whenever I handle firearms in general. The interest I have in firearms now was sparked long ago by shooting with him.

Steve Johnson
Steve Johnson

I founded TFB in 2007 and over 10 years worked tirelessly, with the help of my team, to build it up into the largest gun blog online. I retired as Editor in Chief in 2017. During my decade at TFB I was fortunate to work with the most amazing talented writers and genuinely good people!

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  • Doug Duncan Doug Duncan on Nov 17, 2009

    My uncle has an old Ruger Blackhawk .44 Magnum that is in mint condition and probably 35 years old. I think it has a 6" or 7" barrel.

    What is that gun worth today?

  • Jay Andre Jay Andre on Aug 23, 2011

    I stumbled upon this site by accident and I'm glad I did. That's a great story. With the exception of 1 gun, all mine have always been Rugers. Up until the early part of 2010 I owned 4. All old model 3 screw. They were the .22 Super Single Six convertible, the .357, the .45 long Colt, and the .44 mag. Super Blackhawk in the mahogony presentation box. The one non Ruger is a Winchester .22 pump model 62A. All the Rugers have long barrels and all were chrome plated. The .357 and .45 were fitted with the Super Blackhawk grip frame and wide hammer and trigger. They are beautiful. The .22 my dad, who worked for Pan Am at the time, extended the grip frame and I made grips for them that looked like factory. I realize this is a long winded intro to what I want to say. In the early part of 2010 I needed money badly, and didn't have a computer as I do now, so someone I knew said he would buy the .357 and the .44 for $ 450 for both. Now I think he knew exactly what the .44 was worth. When I got my computer a year ago this month I did some research and found that the .44 is worth between $1,000-1,100! Mine was in extremely good condition. The serial # on the .44 is 1904 and the production date was in 1960. I acquired most of the Rugers shortly after they came out, so I've had them a very long time. I got the Winchester 62A for my 15th Christmas present. That was 54 years ago. Put a lot of .22's thru that rifle. When I got the Rugers I got into quick draw and became quite good, even with the 7 1/2" barrels. I grew up, and still live, in So. Fla. But after about '92 there was no more places to just go and plink. So the guns really haven't been shot since then. Hate going to ranges and shooting paper targets. Anyway thanks for everyone's ear. Sincerely Jay Andre