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Women and firearms: an ag stapleWomen and firearms: an ag staple

Firearm skills are a regular tool in women agriculturists’ belt.

Brent Murphree

October 31, 2023

2 Min Read
Woman and firearm
In rural America, knowledge of firearm use often comes in handy.Getty Images/iStockphoto

I was recently talking to my dad about deer season. I showed him photos of a friend’s daughter that had tagged her first deer. She was all smiles in the photos on Facebook as she proudly posed with her trophy.

My Dad and I chuckled over stories of the women in our family who were and are good with firearms. It might be the necessity of growing up way out on the farm, but it’s also a testament to strong, self-assured women.

I was once spending the night with my grandparents when I was in my early teens. There was a ruckus down where the temporary labor was housed, and Grandma grabbed her .410. She told my cousin and me to stay where we were and headed down to where the disruption was occurring.

My cousin and I stared at each other for a few seconds, gave a rousting, “Go get ‘em,” and enthusiastically cheered for her as she ran the troublemakers off the farm. She hadn’t hesitated to take care of the situation, fortified with her trusty shotgun.

Mom once mentioned that part of her dating ritual with Dad included target practice. She was not a gun enthusiast, but she did know what to do and was not afraid to use one.  She took safety classes, as well as conceal-and-carry instruction. She totally underplayed her ability with a firearm.

I know she was like my grandmother, in that if she needed to use a gun, she’d grab it and use it correctly.

When she and Dad were newly married and Dad was working late, she had a run-in with a pack of varmints that kept raiding a trash barrel. My grandfather ran to their house to see what was up when he heard gunfire.

He said when he got there, he saw her standing by the trash barrel with the gun. Several dispatched critters were down, and he gave good thought as to whether he should even approach her. She was still steaming mad.

I have to add, there’s nothing like watching your mom, when you are little, firing a revolver from a perfect stance – powerful.

My sister is also quite good with a gun.  It doesn’t hurt that she has three brothers who are good shots or that we had a dedicated practice range behind Mom and Dad’s house on the farm.

She was once invited by a new boss to shoot skeet at his ranch. She had downplayed her experience with a shotgun before she stepped up and yelled, “Pull!”

She immediately hit the first two clay pigeons that were flung into the sky. I think it set the pace for her at the new company.

I have to say, it’s a bit different today but it’s good to know that, like my friend’s daughter, there are still some good markswomen out there.

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