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Donald Dallas Books

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John Dickson & Son, The Round Action Gunmaker by Donald Dallas (2014) is a detailed history of John Dickson & Son from 1794 to the present day. Established in 1838 at 60 Princes Street, Edinburgh, the firm quickly gained a reputation for building very high quality guns and rifles, their two-groove percussion rifles achieving international acclaim. Available as a limited private publication from Donald Dallas.

James Purdey & Sons Gun & Rifle Makers: Two Hundred Years Of Excellence

James Purdey & Sons Gun & Rifle Makers: Two Hundred Years Of Excellence by Donald Dallas (2013) details the 200-year history of English gunmakers James Purdey & Sons and contains several appendices including serial numbers to assist with dating guns, as well as production figures to show the rarity of each. All of Purdey's world-famous patents are described, plus the Purdey gunmakers are named to help gun owners to identify initials stamped on parts.

The British Sporting Gun And Rifle: Pursuit Of Perfection, 1850-1900

The British Sporting Gun And Rifle: Pursuit Of Perfection, 1850-1900 by Donald Dallas (2008) details the many changes that occurred in the latter half of the nineteenth century. He describes at length the pinfire, centre-fire and hammerless developments along with all the ancillary changes made to sporting guns. He also outlines the many developments in rifles: the superseding of the two groove muzzle-loading Express rifle by the multi-groove, breech-loading rifle of smaller calibre with higher velocity and greater power, propelled by nitro powder.

David McKay Brown: Scotland's Gun And Rifle Manufacturer

David McKay Brown: Scotland's Gun And Rifle Manufacturer by Donald Dallas (2011). In 1967, David McKay Brown set up his own business, initially repairing guns. He was very impressed with the merits of the round action and in 1974 built the first McKay Brown trigger plate round action. In the 1980s he designed a round action over and under gun, the first such gun being completed in 1992, much admired for its design and elegance. Since 1974 he has built 578 round action guns and rifles both in side-by-side and O/U configuration. The history and development of the round action and the new O/U gun are described in detail for the first time. There are several chapters on the building of McKay Brown guns that go into great detail about their construction.

Boss and Co: Builders of Best Guns Only

Boss and Co: Builders of Best Guns Only by Donald Dallas (1995) is the highly acclaimed definitive history of Boss and Co. by an historian who developed a great interest in sporting guns and the history of their development. He became fascinated by their place in the social and economic history and includes this in his writing. He has researched gunmaking families and technical developments to ensure that his publications are as original and accurate as possible.

Boss and Co: Best Gunmakers

Boss & Co: Best Gunmakers by Donald Dallas (2005) brings the history of the firm right up to date. Over 100 new photos have been inserted and much freshly researched material is published for the first time. New appendices have been added and the new appendix on all the engravers who worked for Boss will prove of great interest to Boss owners; the engraver particular to each gun can be ascertained. Serial numbers are given right up to the present day enabling guns to be dated precisely and for pairs long since parted to be re-united. This is the definitive history of Boss & Co and is fully authorised by the firm.

Holland and Holland 'The Royal' Gunmaker: The Complete History by Donald Dallas (2003) is the authoritative history of the company, written with the full approval and co-operation of Holland and Holland, one of the great British gunmakers. Many rare guns are described and illustrated. Extensive appendices; the 51 Holland patents are described, dating of Holland serial numbers from 1855 to the present day; all the trade labels are illustrated and the rifle cartridges developed and introduced are examined in detail.

Purdey Gun And Rifle Makers: The Definitive History

Purdey Gun And Rifle Makers: The Definitive History by Donald Dallas (2000). Established by James Purdey the Elder in 1816, Purdey built best-quality guns, rifles and pistols to the highest standards. James Purdey the Younger took over the running of the firm in 1858 and was responsible for developing the Express rifle to its pinnacle. In 1863 in the early breechloading period, he invented the most famous closing action of all time, the Purdey bolt. He was quick to see the advantages of the hammerless gun and was astute in purchsing and developing the Beesley hammerless action of 1880. He created guns of great style and elegance and established the form of the hammerless ejector for all others to follow. Athol Purdey guided the firm through the difficult World War I period and Tom Purdey and Jim Purdey took over during the 1930's depression and kept the firm on course during World War II and the post-war years. Purdey serial numbers are listed for the years 1816-2000 to assist with dating guns, production figures are given to show the rarity of certain weapons, all the Purdey patents are described, and of particular interest are the Purdey gunmakers, names to help identify initials stamped on the various parts of Purdey guns.

Charles Gordon: Magnificent Madness

Charles Gordon: Magnificent Madness by Donald Dallas (2011) A fine new work by this leading authority on firearms, privately published by him. Gordon was a wealthy, somewhat insane, collector. "He was of unsound mind throughout his life, one aspect of this being a desire to collect on a massive scale. He bought over 300 guns, rifles and pistols of the very best quality, all in sumptuous cases, about half being muzzle-loaders. Even his breech-loaders were quirky and out-of-date."

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