Michael Helms

Lucius Pond: a Villainous Gunmaker

Lucius Willson Pond may not have been a man of high scruples, but he was an interesting character and some of the firearms that he made are a delight to behold.

Born in 1826 in Hubbardston, Massachusetts, Lucius began working as a machinist when he was about 20. By his 28th birthday, Lucius had positioned himself to take over the machine tool business, which he did well with.

Working in the machine tool business in Massachusetts gave Lucius a front-row seat to the state’s burgeoning gun industry, and the success of Smith & Wesson’s cartridge load revolver inspired him to get in on the action. Pond started out by making the “belt revolver” shown here, which did a splendid job of violating the Rollin White patent that Smith & Wesson had exclusively licensed for themselves.

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