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Marble's Game Getter

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The Marble's Game Getter was originally intended to be the kind of all-around, utilitarian hunter's arm that would allow the use of a wide variety of ammunition. Made in Gladstone, MI, the upper barrel of the over-under Game Getter could fire short, long, or long rifle cartridges while the lower barrel was chambered in a .410 or .44 caliber bore that would discharge special "shot and ball" combination loads as well as a single round ball. This Michigan company also was widely known in outdoor circles for other products, including a waterproof matchcase and conveniently sized camp hatchets.

For a hunter or trapper in readiness to harvest game with either fur or feathers, the multi-purpose Game Getter seemed to fit the bill for a compact, versatile firearm with its easily deployed folding stock. For longer range targets, the Game Getter could also incorporate a folding aperture rear sight for use with the rifle barrel. Selection of either barrel for firing was easily done with a hammer-mounted switch for upper rimfire to lower centerfire firing pins.

But with the National Firearms Act of 1934, many Game Getters with smoothbore barrels shorter than the federally mandated 18 inches became contraband if they were not registered. While about 10,000 Game Getters were manufactured and offered for sale inside a wooden crate that included a leather holster and cleaning gear, those fitted with 12 or 15-inch barrels presented special registration issues for their original purchasers and subsequent owners.

Now on exhibit in the "Mother of Invention" case in the National Firearms Museum, a cased Game Getter is one of the many attractions in the galleries for visitors seeking the unusual.