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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 89.djvu/763

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What Becomes of Old Army Rifles?

Instead of beating swords and guns into pruning-hooks and ploughshares, the Govern- ment sells them to motion-picture companies

��WHENEVKR the ariii\- and navy officials find that they have on hand a consider- able quantity ot supplies which lor some reason are no longer usable, they condemn the equip- ment, arrange it in various lots, and call for sealed bids. These supplies usu- ally include a great variety of articles ranging from cork- screws to cannons, from siiilors' shirts tosubmarines, from a few hundred mess pans to millions of cartridges — a mis- cellaneous and heterogeneous stock, which only a daring mm would buy and only a genius could utilize.

Methods of marketing army and na\'y goods are interesting. In the past, military schools have been among the largest consumers; but they must now give first pliice to motion-picture companies. There is practicalh- no end to the usable material which these concerns can find in discarded government military para- phernalia.

Other kinds of equipment are trans- formed into useful and artistic objects. Coats of arms, hat and cap insignia, and other metal decorations placed

���Swords, guns and bayonets are worked up into a variety of ornamental designs

��on wood plac|ue> make attractive curios. One hun- <lred thousand lielmct eagles have been used in this way. Bullets re- moved from cart- ridges and pro\itietl with proper bases are neat and ser- \iceable paper weights. Short swords, cutlasses, etc., can be utilized as bread and meat knives. Ship lan- terns fitted with elect ric connect i( )ns make artistic hall, porch, and gate lamps. And swords, guns, and ba\onets are worked up into a \ariety ot pieces. The most preten- tious of these are the three-light candelabra, the snioking-stand.and the hall tree illus- trated. The candelabra is made of three bayonets gracefully curled and fastened to- gether at the basi- and fittedat the tup with three candle- brackets. The staff of the smoking-stand is a nickel-plated rifle-barrel, while the base and the ash-tray are made out of belt-clasps. l)uckles, stirrup-cups, and other metal odds and ends all melted together and moldetl into artistic forms. The hall tree is a real work of art. By removing three screws the rifle can be releasetl from the frame to be used again.

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