Who was Edith Gaylord?: Part 1

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

Edie
Edith Gaylord — 1948-2015

This report covers:

  • Introduction
  • Silver spoon days
  • Exiled — twice!
  • Out of Germany
  • Mukden
  • Leaving Mukden — thanks to an American hero!
  • Shanghai
  • America
  • Health
  • Tomboy
  • Alternative medicine

Introduction

I was asked by several readers to write this report, but I would have written it anyway eventually. Because Edith Gaylord was a remarkable woman.

For starters, Edith was her middle name. Her first name was Inga — named after the aunt who sponsored her family so they could immigrate from China, where she was born in 1948. Yes, I said China! Inga Edith Gaylord was born in Shanghai, China in a Catholic convent that had been closed, due to the civil war that was raging across that country. Edith’s family lived during a time and under conditions that some younger Americans refuse to believe ever existed.

Silver spoon days

Her parents, Ernst Goldstein and Margaret Vendt Goldstein, were originally from Charlottenburg, Germany — a community within Berlin. Her father was a PhD chemist and the son of a medical doctor. Her father’s family was very affluent when he was younger. Unfortunately, their last name was Goldstein, at a time when that was not a good name to have in Germany. They were Lutherans, but a day came when that didn’t matter.

Exiled — twice!

Her father lost the right to work in Germany in the early 1930s and had to move to Turkey for about three years. The Turks were just glad to have a German scientist to employ and Edith’s father and mother had grown used to eating, so the arrangement worked out for a while. But the politics in Germany grew worse and the Turks were forced to expel the Goldsteins, who had to return to their native country. Things were much worse when they returned, and Edith’s father looked all around the world for two things — a country that would accept a person named Goldstein and one that had work for him. China finally accepted him because they were in a horrible state and needed scientists badly.

The Germans were glad to be rid of him, so in 1938 he left his homeland again, but without his wife who was not permitted to travel with him. He got work in a Chinese plant and was told to make medicine — any kind of medicine! For materials he was given the 4 elements — air, earth, fire and water! I am not making this up. The Chinese had been invaded by the Japanese and had severe setbacks that destroyed most of their society. They were desperate.

Out of Germany

Edith’s mother was advised by the Nazi government to divorce her husband and she could live as a full German citizen again. She refused to do that, so the government made things very hard for her. Every day she would apply for a travel visa and every day she was advised to divorce her husband. Then came a day when she was told she had to divorce her husband or be sent to a concentration camp that day. I’m sure they weren’t called that, but the German people knew what they were — places where undesirables were held. They hadn’t started the mass executions yet, but only a fool didn’t know they were coming. The Russian Pogwoms were still in everyone’s recent memory. If she refused either of these 2 options, she had 5 hours to leave the country! Most of the family remained in Germany and were eliminated in the camps, one by one.

She had no money, but was given a gold pocket watch when she boarded the train to Poland. She used that as money outside Germany, but would have been sent to a concentration camp if it had been found on her at the border. From Poland she went to the Soviet Union and crossed that nation on the Trans-Siberian Express. Sometime during that journey someone on the train was seen taking pictures out the window with a camera and the train stopped on the tracks for 2 days while the Soviets searched each car thoroughly. Finally the person who owned the camera confessed and it was taken from him. He was a young American, so nothing was done to him beyond expelling him from the country.

Mukden

Edith’s mother reunited with her husband in Manchuria where there was a small community of German Jews. For the next 10 years they lived in Mukden, a very large city that is called Shenyang today. Edith’s older brother, Bob, was born there. Her father wasn’t being paid most of the time, so her mother became an entrepreneur. The Russians had invaded the country to help the Chinese expel the Japanese, and Edith’s mother knew that soldiers liked souvenirs, so she went around to the formerly wealthy Chinese homes, asking for things she could sell to the soldiers. She split the profits with the Chinese owners who could not do business directly with the soldiers because they would most likely be killed. When she got some money, she bought some food and walked to where her husband worked, where they shared it.

Edith’s mother strapped her infant son on her back as she went around selling her trinkets because she knew the Russians, Japanese and Chinese all revered children. They were less likely to kill her if they saw she had an infant.

Leaving Mukden — thanks to an American hero!

But things in China turned worse after the World War. The Communist Chinese began taking over the country from the Nationalists, one provence at a time. Mukden was far in the north and the ChiCom army didn’t get there until 1948, but then their forces surrounded Mukden and no one could leave. Edith’s parents and her brother tried to escape but found the way blocked. Then, a young American State Department employee gave them his seat on the last U.S. diplomatic flight out of Mukden. Three people in one airplane seat — that’s how desperate things were!

William Stokes was that young man and Edith tracked him down in the late 1990s. He was retired and living in Maryland. We lived about 20 miles from him, so Edith, her bother and his wife and I all went to the Stokes’ house to thank him for what he had done. He told us the Communists Chinese arrested and held him for a long time when they sized the city, and it was only through diplomatic channels that he was later freed.

Better than that, his wife was a young woman whose family rented a room to Edith’s family. She remembered both of Edith’s parents and brought out a photo album that showed the house they had lived in! Boy, there was a lot of crying and hugging that day, I can tell you! As an outsider I felt I was watching a real Hollywood tear-jerker story unfold in front of my eyes.

Shanghai

The U.S. plane that left Mukden landed in Shanghai and Edith’s family could not go any farther because her mother was very pregnant with her. So they walked around the city, looking for what to do next. They found a Catholic convent that was closed, but Edith’s father persisted in banging on the heavy wooden door until it was unlocked and the nuns took them in. Edith was born a few days later in their infirmary. They could not issue a birth certificate because there was no Chinese government to issue official documents at the time, so they issued a certificate of live birth instead. The U.S. government accepted that as her birth certificate when they issued her naturalization papers in the 1950s.

Edith’s father “sold” his sole posession — a manual typewriter — to the convent’s Mother Superior for some money, and began trying to leave Shanghai. Finally an aunt Inga in New Jersey stepped up and sponsored the family, providing transportation to the U.S. That’s where Edith’s first name came from.

In the late 1990s Edith tracked down 2 of the very nuns who had been at the convent in Shanghai when her family was there. Her father had kept their names in his address book — sending money to support them whenever he could. Both women were in their 90s and were unable to remember the incident in Shanghai when Edith and her brother visited them in New Jersey, but Edith and her brother told their story to the other nuns who could understand. They were amazed. You don’t hear stories like this today!

America

Edith’s father found work in New Jersey as an elevator operator. Then he washed dishes. A PhD chemist washing dishes! But things like that happen whenever people flee oppressive countries. Of course that didn’t last very long. With his background and education he eventually got a position with the Martin company (Martin Marietta) in Florida and also worked as an associate professor at Florida State University.

Health

Edith was born to a malnourished woman who had been starving in China for a decade. She was born with rickets and bowed legs. She wore corrective shoes until she was in the second grade. She was force-fed so much cod liver oil as a child (because of a vitamin D deficiency) that her liver was all but destroyed.

And she grew up very fast. Always the tallest pupil in class until high school, she even towered over some of her teachers. As a result, she appeared to be robust and full of health. But she wasn’t. She had a tough shell but was very fragile inside. She reacted violently to prescription medications that didn’t phase most people. She had a list of allergies that made some people think she was a hypochondriac — including the one dentist who gave her Novocain for a dental procedure — despite the warning on her dental records — and stopped her heart! Fortunately the local hospital in Maryland was able to start it, again.

Christmas, 1950
Edith with her brother, Bob, Christmas, 1950.

Easter 1960
Easter, 1960. Edith is growing up!

Edith with parents 1968
Edith with parents, Christmas, 1968

Edith marries Tom 1982
Edith and I are married, May 21, 1982.

Edith and Tom Christmas Maryland 1983
Edie and I celebrate Christmas in Maryland, 1983.

Tomboy

She built model cars as a kid and could name most 1950s and ’60s Detroit iron just from seeing the fenders or grille. She was never a girlie-girl, though her favorite color was hot pink and though she was very attractive. But she hated shopping in stores, buying clothes and spending money on herself. And, when I shot holes in the walls or the couch, she just shrugged it off. Hey — that’s bound to happen, she said!

Edith loved the United States. She had heard the stories about Germany, Turkey and China from her mother and she had a great appreciation for the freedoms we had in this country. That’s why she was a prepper. She didn’t care for big government — especially when they wanted to use more of our money to tell us how to live. She loved the free spirit of Texas and rejoiced when we moved here in 2003. She got her concealed carry license as soon as she could and she carried all the time. But it was the free, unoppressed spirit of the Texans she really responded to. They talked and acted like she felt!

Alternative medicine

As a result of her fragile medical condition, Edith was extremely interested in alternative medicine. She wanted to know everything she could about her own health, so she could control it. She even worked for a major marketing group where she ghosted Dr. Atkins’ (the diet doctor) monthly newsletter for 18 months. After a couple sessions with her, Dr. Atkins relaxed because he knew she would never write anything that wasn’t entirely true and proven. He trusted her writing for him. After that gig she wrote an alternative health blog of her own that gave her great satisfaction.

I have not told you anything yet about Edith and shooting or Edith and airguns. Believe me — there is a lot more to tell. She knew more about airguns and the shooting sports than any woman I have known and even more than most men!

165 thoughts on “Who was Edith Gaylord?: Part 1


  1. BB
    Totally a amazing story. The things that people go through and you would never even comprehend.

    My dad came over from Italy at very young age and many stories have been told both good and bad to me about things that have went on.

    It makes me wonder how or why some people can be like they are in this world today. And as they say freedom is never free.

    And I know from the little bit of time that I have known Edith on the blog that she was a very strong willed person and seen things with a open mind. And very easy going but wanted to make sure things were always on the up and up.

    I can’t wait to hear more about her shooting and air guns. And how the both of you got involved with Pyramyd Air. All the work she done with correcting things on the website and the mail out catalogs she did. Oh my gosh I didn’t even think about the catalog. How is all that work getting done now?

    And you right BB. It is a wonderful Friday blog. You told me a good one was coming. Thanks for writing this very special blog today. And I do suggest that this series of blogs about Edith be linked to the memorial picture below. And I do like where that picture is positioned on the page. A person will always see Edith’s picture when a new reply is made. I can’t wait to hear more stories of her and your life. Thanks again BB.


  2. Amazing! But not surprising, for the woman we’ve gotten to know through this forum. Thank you so much for sharing, Tom. I’m looking forward to the next installment.



  3. I’m so very blessed to have met Edith and spent a little time with her.

    She was passionate in her beliefs, animated in her speaking and loyal to those she believed were worthy. She knew details from past and present. She couldn’t be intimidated by anyone but didn’t have a gruff exterior. Quite the opposite, she was easily approachable and quickly made you feel like someone that was a longtime friend.

    I spent more time online and on the phone with Edith than I did in person. Nonetheless, I’m heartbroken. She had that life force that transcended the phone lines and Internet to appear in person during communication. I am so blessed to have known her.

    kevin


  4. BB
    I have only interacted with Edith for barely two years but I knew from the first reply I got from her that she was indeed a very remarkable woman and was wise beyond what most would never even consider possible.

    The story you just told I have only heard or read of the oppression and struggles that families such as hers lived with and the conditions they endured just to survive a single day with little to no hope it would or could get any better yet they persevered each and every day with the strength that has been lost in the ages. I can only feel truly blessed to have been born in an age that most of that oppression and daily struggles had been lessened at least by some extent for those still in the oppressed countries.

    I now feel a much closer and a more respectful adoration of just the wonderful women she grew to be and can see why you feel so truly blessed to have been her soul mate for all those wonderful years.

    Please never forget the memories you both had together and all the life you both enjoyed as a couple as it is those sacred memories we carry with us every day that truly allows her to live forever in your heart and ours. I only wish I had had a chance to meet her in person to be touched by an angel of the lord as she made this world a better place for everyone she made contact with be it thru this blog or in person.

    I feel blessed to have known her even if it was just a short few years and only thru the blog as she had a way about her that you could not argue with and I remember when SteveinMN if my memory serves me now were disagreeing over the politics in this country now and she let us know that we needed to make up and let it go with out even a cross word or disrespectful demeanor but I knew she meant business and was not to be challenged so we just agreed to disagree and all was settled.

    She will be truly missed by us all and in our hearts with every waking moment.

    I cannot wait to hear about her airgunning exploits and if she is like my wife and truly a better shot than me so you have to be honest with us and tell us if she could out shoot you as well as I believe if she could not she made you work very hard to stay ahead of her.

    BD



  5. Thank you so much for sharing this. Edith’s strength came through in her replies, but was always ready with humor as well. When she replied to a post, you instinctively “sat up straight in your chair” and gave her your full attention. 😉 She possessed a certain “magnetism” if you will. She will be missed.

    Tom,…your clarity of names, dates and events is amazing. We all joke about memory and getting older, but it’s clear that your as sharp as a tack. I look forward to hearing more. I like Gunfun’s idea of the articles being linked to the picture at the top. The picture at the top reminds me of my Mom, a lot. She is still with me, but having an immune deficiency of some sort as well as other issues, she sees a hospital all too often. When feeling “well”, which is most of the time, she is unstoppable. Very strong and always thinking of others first.


    • Chris,

      Edith told me those stories over the 33 years we were together. I got to the point that I could repeat most of them from memory, and a couple — like meeting the Stokes — I was present for.

      I have to be honest, though — I may have gotten a date or fact out of order. If Edith were here to edit this post I’m sure she would make corrections.

      B.B.


  6. Thanks so much for writing this amazing story Tom, it’s one I will never forget. It saddens and angers me that she was taken from you too soon, but I’m sure that in time you will be reunited. It also enrages me that events such as those that happened to her family are still occurring today, and will continue to occur due to the warped ambitions of politicians and evil people. Anyway, I hope you have more of her story to tell.


  7. B.B.,

    It’s obvious the two of you were very much in love. Love can heal all things and I am so glad you two found each other for Edith needed much healing. It’s equally obvious that you both ended up having wonderful and happy lives together. Her infectious smile is a clear sign of that.

    This blog is a great celebration of a hard won life and I look forward to more of the story. God bless you B.B. for telling her story and may He give you the grace and strength to continue on and live in a way that will honor God, Edith’s life and bring continued happiness to your own, for you have earned it.

    G&G


  8. There might be some readers of the blog that are not aware that Edith was not only the keeper of the peace, the finder of the facts, and a relentless creator of content for the PA main website (as well as a million other things she did behind the scenes) but she was also an excellent blog writer in her own right. As much as I enjoy Tom’s blogs, Edith’s were a special treat.

    Here are all the ones I could find. There are probably others I couldn’t.

    /blog/2010/01/what-edith-got-for-christmas/

    /blog/2014/10/conquering-new-worlds-its-up-to-you/

    /blog/2013/09/and-now-for-something-completely-different/

    /blog/2013/02/crossman-daisey-and-annschultz-airguns/

    /blog/2012/01/you-asked-for-it-pyramyd-air-customer-reviews-mages/

    /blog/2011/12/sharing-airguns-with-your-spouse/

    /blog/2010/04/finding-the-good-stuff/

    /blog/2009/12/tennis-golf-baseball-football/

    /blog/2009/05/you-know-youre-an-airgunner-if/

    /blog/2009/04/life-with-b-b-aka-tom-gaylord/

    /blog/2008/12/how-i-learned-to-love-guns/

    I found Edith’s writing to be brilliant. It is my estimation that her style and humor rubbed off on her husband, and that we will continue to benefit from her influence as long as Tom continues to write.


  9. Thanks very much for sharing this with us Tom. Reading this has put me in a very reflective mood, I am looking forward to reading more about Edith and her life.

    Slinging Lead – thanks for compiling the list of articles – they are on my “must read” list.

    Hank


  10. Wooooow!!! Amazing so far B.B., I think this a great idea and it’s great that it will be a multiple part blog. I love the old pictures, fantastic, I have a passion for pictures as well as video. I can’t wait for part II of this epic saga, keep up the good work Sir. Thanks. Ricka.



  11. BB,

    that is a fascinating story. I had no idea Edith had German roots.

    I wouldn’t wish these tragedies on anyone, but I think surviving them is character-forming.

    I think concentration camps may have been called exactly that. It sounds like a typical Nazi euphemism. I believe these camps were around some years before WW II and at first they were more like prisons or labour camps. The total extermination of the Jews was decided on in 1941 and after that, many of the concentration camps clearly became extermination camps.

    This is what happens when people start to think they’re better than others because of their race, nation, religion etc. I detest these ideologies. I think people should be judged by what they do, not where they come from.

    Stephan



  12. B.B.,

    An amazing story, truly amazing and all the more-so because it’s true. In the hands of a talented author I think that the true story of the hardships and the persecutions that Edith and her family lived through and survived would make a very good book, I really do. Thank you very much for writing what you have about Edith and like everyone else I look forward to the next parts. Please do continue her story.

    SlingingLead….thank you for those links. I now have the chance to read/see/learn more about Edith than I had the time to in the short few months that I’ve been following the blog.

    Denny



      • Hi Tom, Would you ever consider publishing that booklet or sharing it? Since I’m homeschooling my daughter I find stories like that helpful in teaching my daughter and children of this generation about some of the struggles people in other times and other parts of the world at present live through and it helps show just how easy we have it in the USA. I understand fully if you would rather keep that booklet in the family, but thought it was worth asking! I am enjoying reading your articles on Edith as I only met her a couple of times and this gives me a little more insight into the woman behind the Godfather of Airguns. 🙂 You are in our prayers.


      • Fascinating story, truly fascinating. Thank you for posting it.

        My mother also wrote a small booklet, and I’m intrigued by the similarities. She was born in 1940, a year after the Japanese confiscated her parents’ Nanchang home and converted it into a railroad HQ. She spent her first few years on the run from the Japanese. In 1945, her father took a post as the head of the Central China Veterans Training Center in Nanjing, a plum position that in 1948 became a liability, forcing them to flee the Communists, from Shanghai to Nanchang to Guilin to Hong Kong. In 1960 she ended up in Kansas.


  13. B.B.
    That’s a great tribute to your wife, Miss Edith, and also a nice history lesson. Sadly, a lot of younger people are clueless as to just how bad the godless evil created by the Nazis and the Commies really was (or in the case of the Commies, still is…oy!). A friend/neighbor/mentor of mine spent some time on one of the Nazi camps, but, thank God, got liberated before they killed her. And another one of my friends had most of his family escape from Cold War Russia only to come to the USA where his college professor extolled the virtues of “the Workers Paradise” (Communist Russia, for those not up on such things); Ed raised his hand and asked the professor if he had ever lived under a Communist regime; when he admitted that he had not, Ed ripped him to shreds in front of the class, exposing him for the clueless Stalin-sycophant that he was. In short, Nazism…bad, Communism…bad, Miss Edith…awesome! =)
    take care & God bless,
    dave




  14. Mr. BB, with all due respect, you were way over chicked & you, sir, have a lot of guts! Having shared a little of my moms story privately w/Ms. Edith, I now understand the bond. Thanx for sharing her/your story. More, please.
    Have a great weekend ya’ll. Shoot/ride safe.
    Beaz


  15. B.B.

    Thank you Sir! Wow, what a story & what an extraordinary lady Ms. Edith was. I fully agree with Gunfun 1 on always keeping her picture on the Blog & giving the links to ALL her articles ( thanks a Mil Gunfun) so that her memory will ALWAYS be alive. Looking forward to all the rest of it. I find it incredible that a person who has gone through so much can evolve into the wonderful & lovely person she was. I suppose that would be the result of her great mental strength & well balanced attitude to life. It was a surprise to know of her health issues, as she looked a picture of health. Maybe it contributed to how her illness got the better of her, sadly. All of us are poorer by her loss.

    Errol


  16. BB,

    Thanks for sharing. A week or two ago, I thought you were a pretty unlucky guy, to have lost Edith. Now I realize how lucky you were, to have lived with such a lovely, capable woman for so many years. And I too will go read some of Edith’s posts, thanks to SL’s list.

    – Ben


  17. Tom,

    Thank you so very much for today’s report. Edith’s parents and brother, and Baby Edith, too, had one heck of a difficult, perilous, and winding journey to the United States. Edith and Bob were terribly fortunate that their father had an invaluable expertise and their mother was so tenacious, so remarkably resilient. It is easy to see how the many challenges Edith faced, along with her inherited strength, made her such an amazing woman.

    Edith’s story is an inspiring one. Thank you for sharing,

    Michael


  18. BB,
    Along with everyone else, I enjoyed today’s blog. I didn’t have any idea about Edith’s younger years. We hear the expression that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. I am sure that applied to Edith’s parents, her brother, and herself.

    The story is amazing but it makes me sad to think that there are a million stories like this (or much sadder) that came from that period of time. And, even today many are being killed or are having to flee very similar circumstances.

    Thanks for sharing with us,
    David Enoch




      • B.B.,

        🙂 You,….of course……The short hair worked good for Edith. If you your interested,…me and the BD76 might be able to help you out with 2~3′. Of course, ….there might be a “bit” of bartering involved. 😉

        Chris




          • BB
            My father was an Air Force LT Coronel so he did not agree with the long hair either but my high school graduation it was on my shoulders and I never did see the need to conform to societies gender biased culture that men had to have short hair.

            BD


        • Chris, USA and BB
          I think we could/would spare a few inches as you know now they can replant it just like the sod in your yard, but then you would have to deal with hair cuts again or just do like Chris and I do and save the money for hair cuts to buy pellets and other required toys. LOL

          Jesus had long hair so it is a society and culture driven issue not gender driven.

          BD


          • After having mine whacked down to 1/8″ I realized how much less work it was to just keep it short and of I let it go too long it gets windy and whips my face and eyes



            • Reb
              Mine stay in a ponytail as it is baby fine and if I ride my bikes with out it braided it would have to be cut it as I could never get the tangles out of it so when I worked and it was down to my butt braided in stayed inside my shirt so it could not get caught in belt or fans or other rotating objects as I have seen a fellow worker get his face yanked into an alternator by the belt grabbing his ponytail so live and learn.

              BD


          • BD76,

            Yea, got to “cut”, errr,.. rather not,… in some cases,..where you can to save for the “goodies”.

            I actually get quite a few comments from the ladies while out shopping on the hair. I think it really just a an “ice breaker” though,….I am pretty sure that it’s my devastating good looks and irresistible charm and wit they are really after. Kind of got the Tom Cruze and Pierce Brosnan thing going on, with a little Steven Sagal thrown in. 😉

            Time to wake up now,……Chris

            ( will be testing the 17.0 Metal Mags. in the TX this AM. Not expecting much. Will do 4, ten shot groups unless they go really bad from the start in which case I will just give ’em 20 )



              • Reb,

                I think we both know that the TX and LGU are not exactly “groundhog rated”. We all know that (pictures) of groundhogs HAVE to be on the box for a rifle to “chuck” worthy.

                By the way, these have the points superglued in. Penetration test in duct seal indicated tip separation as bought. The glue allowed the tip to stay in. It works. Tips not removed, just let some thin type super glue run down the tip and into the “well” at the tip base.

                Will post results later this afternoon. Also ordered some 14.0 HN Sniper’s. They mimic the shape of the 10.34 in .177 that GF1 likes. The 18.0 Snipers did not do so well, but on last order, the 14.0’s were out.



              • B.B.,

                Yea, the sentence structure and/or punctuation might have been just a weee bit off on that one. Not the best writer,…but I guess I try and do what you suggested for guest blog writer’s,……write in a manner that is easy to read and “feel’s” like you are speaking.

                Chris


            • Chris
              Actually the wife does trim the dead ends off as needed and it is her wishes/ demands that it not be cut as she like men with long hair as hers is short like Edith’s so we just swap roles in that respect. LOL

              Like you it is what drew her to me and indeed was an ice breaker as I am no charmer by any means and never a ladies man as I am just to settled in my own standards and opinions to play the games necessary in today dating world and is why I will be celebrating our 17th anniversary the 26 of September. This is my second marriage as the first lasted 19 years so I am not one to play the bar scene and just prefer to find a woman that share my same views and likes and is willing to compromise as partners in crime.

              So that would be Tom Pierce Segal as your stage name you say. LOL

              BD


  19. On Edith,

    I remember my first few post,…..awefull,…I did not know what I was doing on the keyboard. Before here, I never did blog post or much e-mail. (Edith),…”fixed” it and gave me a few tips on what to do and not to do. That,..I would say,…is my biggest memory of Edith. Of course there is more memories,….but that “one” has stuck with me.

    And,…here I am. Edith got the “ball” rollin’……Chris


  20. BB,
    Great write up! Edith and her family sure did endure many hardships not familiar with most Americans today. Thanks for sharing and very well written. My first post today. I felt this was the right time. You can say I am one of those silent air gunners. Take care. Mark


  21. Even without the biographical data Edith was wonderfully warm, witty and smart. She just gets more awesome the more one finds out. Thanks for doing these blogs, BB. I hope it is more pleasant for you to share than painful in the recollection.



  22. Hi folks…

    this topic made me think of something else:

    If possible, it would be great if people could scan and archive the old issues of The Airgun Letter. There must be all kinds of interesting stuff in there… Especially for the folks who like their vintage guns.

    The question is whether the copyright situation would allow this.

    Stephan


    • Stephan,

      I can answer that. The answer is no, the copyright is still in effect and those articles may not be reproduced.

      I do look at them from time to time a resurrect some for this blog. Here is an example:

      /blog/2013/01/erma-elg-10-air-rifle/

      B.B.


  23. BB– I sense a novel waiting to be written. There is no better way to honor Edith than by writing her amazing story so that non bloggers can read it. With luck, it might be made into a movie or a T.V. series. I know a C.B.S. executive and this is the kind of story that he likes. I knew Claire Taschdjian (in 1960). She was born in china, worked for Dr. Weidenreich ( anthropologist, discovered Peking man), and had a similar remarkable life. She wrote fictionalized novel based on her life. Whether written as an autobiography or fiction, I think that Ediths life deserves to be written. Ed


  24. B.B.

    In her time Edith told me a thing or two about her early life, but to read the whole story – it’s amazing.

    We are all lucky to to know her and talk to her in our time. Her bright personality and her strong spirit could be felt throughout this blog and this I think was a great gift to us all. Some time ago I found a good metaphore, that people are like diamonds – they can be worked with only with other diamonds. So I am very glad that some facets on me were cut by her. And as long as we keep those facets in our souls, the gem that made them will live on.

    duskwight


  25. As promised,…

    The 17.0g Pred. Mtl. Mags with a TX200MkIII (HO kit) making 643fps. avg. with JSB 15.89’s. Four 10 shot groups @ 25yds.

    As shot, 40,33,35,39mm. For those that like “, that’s around 1 9/16″ to 1 5/16”. Not that great. Crap?

    I am not the most steady, but I was not too bad this AM. A few slight “pulls”, but nothing too bad. No “make up” shots. No real sub-groups to speak of. Patterning was pretty round overall.

    I had several “you know when their good” shots in a row, and the pellets would land a little “off” from one another. They do seem to “wander” a bit all by themselves.

    I did hit a 16oz. Red Bull can at 50 yards 5 of 5 times if that says anything. ( I don’t drink the stuff, I just shoot the cans ) 😉 (lots of silver to show up 60′ into dark woods)

    Oh, and a correction on the above “Sniper” pellets comment……it was the 14.0g I ordered last time, (and ordered again). The ones I wanted was the 18.0g, which were out last time, and are still out now. 🙁

    Like I said, I ain’t the best shot, but that’s my take on 40 shots with the Mtl. Mags.

    Chris


    • You should be able to pick your spot inside 40 yds or so on a Chuck and would probably still be 12 fpe for most of that but if you can whittle it down to 25yds it would most likely be very humane and effective


      • Reb,

        Just my opinion,….a 1/2″ at 25yds. would be better. From what I learned here, a (good) head shot is pretty much required.

        On the “chucks”,….my neighbor did a “fill their holes full of rocks and wood” and do it repeatedly. It apparently worked as I have not seen on in my yard for a full year. Before, it was several a day.

        On the “neighbor”,..he picked up a 100$ Wally World .177 air rifle a while back. All fine and good. Even taken a squirrel or two with it. All fine and good. Then he took a Robin,….I ripped into him!!! Good!!! Then, a few days ago he came by to tell me he had got another squirrel. “Where did ya’ get him?,” I asked. “In the head, just behind the neck”, he said. Giving him a slight smile and an approving nod,…I asked where he was aiming. Answer,…..”I don’t have a clue”. Really,….some people should not even be allowed to………..finish it however you want. Needless to say,….I ripped into him again!!! Ain’t seen him in a few days. Mmmmmm?

        On “Edith”,…..Her and I had a bit of “back and forth” on the Ethical Airgun Hunting link (at the top of the page.) You can read it. Let’s just say, she “set me straight”, in no short order, on why I should post hunting related stories over here on this blog,…and not over there on that one.

        Thanks Edith,…..yet another memory…… 😉

        Chris


        • Never dealt with chucks, but I was taught by a farmer as a kid how to deal with pocket gophers.

          One way involves a trap that that pierces them on both sides as they pass by. The cheaper way is to break up glass and shove it down the hole.

          A man whose family eats on how profitable an almond orchard is- he is going to have a differant view on ethics and rodents than someone else.


    • Pred. Mtl. Mags. (today),

      With regards to the above listed test yesterday, (40,33,35,39mm.) Today was, (50,36,25,30mm). I was pretty steady today, better than yesterday. All I can say is that those pointed little puppies seem to have a mind of their own. 🙁


      • Chris USA
        Thanks for that update.

        If they don’t go where you want them to then no sense trying them on a live critter.

        Very important to test first without a doubt. And you may of said already but what distance was that at?


        • GF1,

          25yds.,……while still new, I had some really good, steady, perfect shots in a row. They landed different.

          I’d like to hear how well someone else does with them.


          • Chris USA
            I had a really, really good day of shooting yesterday. No matter what I did I was hitting.

            But one thing changed. The weather person predicted zero wind. And they were right. I haven’t shot that good in a long time. Reminded me of how I shot at the old house where my shooting area in the back yard was blocked from wind for the most part.

            I knew the wind made me shoot different when I moved out here. But didn’t know it affected me that much.

            I’m still steady and comfortable today but the winds back. It’s only a 5 mph crosswind but I can see the difference its making with each gun I’m shooting.

            See maybe not good shooting conditions is a good thing. Just another thing learned is the way I see it.


            • GF1,

              You would love it here, less the 30yd. limit,…(+ = woods). 60’~80′ trees 360 and banked to the West. Noticable wind is pretty rare. Congrats on a good day.


              • Chris USA
                Pretty much how my old house was.

                Now back yard is open rolling fields the a L shaped woodline then more fields then open fields and woods again.

                I have to have a direct south wind when the corn is full grown or a north wind for me to have the wind blocked.

                And yep it feels good when them pellets just start dropping in the same place.


                • GF1,

                  Speaking of pellets dropping into the (same) hole,….with the LGU and the 15.89’s,..of course,…my first three shots, on three 10 shot targets, did just that!!! I will not tell you the rest. Let’s just say, it did not stay that way. I remember the same thing happening at 41′ indoors this winter. From then on, I could cut a single hole on a pretty regular basis. So…maybe I am turning the corner on (unoffical) 1 holers at 25yds. ?????

                  If so, it’s darn well about time! No one said it would be THIS hard! 😉



                    • GF1,

                      No explanation??? Wierd things??? What’s up with that? I,..(prefer),…to think of it as I am on my way to awesomeness!!!! They were not 1 bigger hole, they were the (same) hole. After all 3 times, I walked down to the target just to make sure. That,…is probably what screwed up the rest of the group.

                      I willing to go one on one,…..just give me 10 years or so,….. 😉


                  • Chris USA
                    I don’t mean it that way. I’m glad that you are getting good results.

                    What I mean is its hard to expect something to happen for the good. It just don’t end up as expected some days.

                    Just like yesterday and today with the wind. It’s stopped blowing again and they are dropping on the money again.

                    And the lower velocity guns definitely feel the effect of the wind more than the higher power guns.

                    And a one on one match in ten years. Are you thinking I’m going to stop shooting or something.
                    😉


                    • GF1,

                      🙂 Ten years?,….Mmmmmm,…..”timing the wiggle”,…might turn into “timing the wobble”.

                      Just so I don’t “hex” it, I will stay seated and just let those “miracle” groups be. I will say,…my jaw did drop,….3X.


                  • Chris USA
                    It does feel good when them groups happen though doesn’t it.

                    And yep by then I might not be able to see regardless if I have a scope. So maybe you hot a chance. 🙂 😉



                    • GF1,

                      Clever trick!……reply to yourself when your out’a room….your good! 😉

                      Outa’ here,…..back to the “cookie factory” tomorrow,….ughhhh. Chris



                    • That’s what’s I like about a job like B.B’s got. No clock punching, write it like you feel it and if it sounds like fun try it.


  26. Mr. Gaylord,

    2 things: First, they say that anything posted in the World Wide Web will exist forever; therefore, the story and memory of Edith will exist forever. Second, I read this blog to my wife, and when I was done her first word was “Wow,” followed by saying that someone needs to make such a fascinating story into a movie.

    Sean


  27. I’m really happy that I was able to know Edith a little bit thru the blog and this blog really shows how great a person she was and it makes me even happier to have gotten to know her a little bit.
    She will be greatly missed by everyone here and the whole airgunning community wether people know it or not.

    I remember when you were in the hospital how strong she was and how she continued to push thru and publish a blog article everymorning even if it wasn’t even her blog! She seemed like a really great person and thank you for letting us know her a little bit more.

    J-F


  28. Chris—-I once had a neighbor who hated (or was afraid) of bugs. Neighbors further down the block thought that he was always carrying a can of beer. It was bug spray! It was like living next to Bophal ! He once boasted to me, that there were no spiders in his house. I replied that I would rather live next to spiders than him. When he asked why, I said that they eat mosquitos and other bugs, and he does not. Luck was with me, my house was already up for sale when he moved in, and I only had to live next to him for a few months. Neighbors do not need guns to be dangerous ! Ed


    • Zimbabweed,

      Good story. Yeah, I am not sure there is much hope. On top of that, he’s a Army National Guard Vet. 20 yrs. On occasion, I guess they get to shoot some pretty nice/big stuff, from his point. At anyrate, I mention the most basic of scope terms, and I get the “deer in the headlights” look. Not sure what they are teaching them throughout the year and their 2 weeks in the feild, but it apparently has little to do with shooting.

      Don’t get me wrong, they do a great service in times of natural disasters and other things. But, are they not supposed to a second line of defense as well? I don’t know. I truly do not. Really,….just the basics and some regular practice would be a good thing.

      Rant aside,…what is “Bophal”? I like odd words and that is one that I had not heard before.

      Chris


      • And,

        Before I get “bombed”, I do know that National Guard get’s called up to go abroad. A close friend went over to the Middle East, twice. He made it back fine, thank God. I just hope they give the men heading out some basic skills on shooting. With the way things are today,..those skills might come in handy,…a bit closer to home.

        Chris


      • I have no idea why we needed a department of homeland security that’s what the National Guard’s job is supposed to be, ” guarding the homeland while regular troops are fighting elsewhere.


        • Reb,

          As I said, I do not know. I know my neighbor and my good friend. That’s it. And, the news.

          All I can say is that if they are THE back-up, then I darn sure want to make sure they can.

          After all, we are paying for it.

          As for Homeland Security, that might just be “a bit” more high tech. Again, as long as we are getting what we paid for,…then go get ’em. As for “nosing” on you and me,…..well,……..Grrrrrrr.

          Chris


          • Well that’s the way it was designed anyways. The reserve is for extra fighters and if you’re in the reserves and we go to war you’re all but drafted back into service. But since when do politicians follow the rules?


          • That’s why there are civilian based organizations such as various state militia and other more proactive camps abound. They will find a tipping point as they keep laying down their cards.


      • Chris, some guys have a lot of firearms experience, some have little- depending on MOS, duty assigments, schools attended, etc.

        To top it off, the military values marksmanship, but understands it produces a low caualtie count compared to indirrect fire and crew serve weapons.

        Also, I qualified well while knowing nothing about scopes. Man size target, 300m, iron sights.


        • Sam,

          Thanks for the additonal insight. I’d have to see that man size target, 300m, iron sights,…..but that sounds awfull darn good to me. My guess would be (I) would take one look and go,…”yea, right?”.

          Thanks again, Chris


  29. Chris- Bophal was the worlds worst industrial disaster. On the night of Dec.2-3, a leak occurred in a pesticide plant in Bophal , India. as many as 8,000 people died, and over 500,000 were injured. If you had seen my neighbor spraying everything that moved ,and smelled the odor of pesticides every time he opened a window or door, you would understand my comparison. Ed


  30. Reb– In 1957, I was a newly hired lab tech. in a Bklyn. hospital. The secretary’s office was near my lab. One day, I opened the door to her closet by mistake. It was a large closet, and filled to the ceiling with lab report sheets of every possible color. The order of the test results was different , and the method of attachment to the patients chart varied( stapled, glued (several different kinds of glue) self stick, lick and stick, etc.). When I asked the sectary for an explanation , this is what she told me—Hospital supervisors and managers came and went frequently. When a newbie arrived, one of the first things he did was to change the lab results sheet. When he left (for a better paying job at another hospital ) he had to provide a resume listing his many accomplishments. So he made as many changes as he could. They were made for the sake of change and did not make any improvement. We were lucky if they did no harm. And of course, they ordered a life time supply of lab report forms. So a large closet was filled to the brim with useless paper. Politicians work the same way. To” prove ” that he was doing something to justify taking up space in the White house, he created another bureaucratic organization–HOMELAND SECURITY, instead of giving the job to the organizations that already existed. Now that I have reached the end of my long story, to make a point, I want to thank all(?) the bloggers who read it and arrived at the conclusion Ed


  31. Wow… What an amazing story. Her family had to deal with so much challenge in their lifetime that most people probably never would think could exist.

    Edith would share stories of her past from time to time, but most of this was completely new to me. “Inga” sounds so familiar… I don’t know if she happened to share this over the years or if it just comes across as familiar because I kept re-reading “Inga Edith Gaylord” from the introduction. And the pictures are absolutely wonderful!

    I’m really looking forward to the future posts.

    Elise


    • Me too. When I was enlisted I knew so many people from differant backgrounds that now I ask all kinds of people their backgrounds. It is really interesting.

      Edith has a fascinating story. It seems the greatest tyranny was accomplished by people with good intentions.



  32. I swing through Wally’s today and that 1377 was hanging on a hook that had a price tag for $35 but it rang up @ $60+ but a trip back through sporting goods sealed the deal.
    It’s changed a bit since my last one but I’m liking it so far.


    • Reb
      Steel breech, 24″ Discovery barrel and a 1399 stock and you’ll be all set. Oh and throw a scope on it too.

      If you do I know you will be happy. It will be one of the most versatile guns you will own.


      • I have a stock 1322 and think it is great. Pretty accurate to. Just enough for pigeons in an industrial setting.

        My feeling on barrels longer than 14″ or so on these guns is this Once it is longer than most rifles, why not just get a 2100, 397, or used 1400 instead? Am I missing something?

        Now a 1399 stock, steel breach and small scope or red dot would give me a carbine to shoot pigeons with that still fits in the same backpack. That would suit me well.


        • Sam
          The Discovery barrel works real good on these guns. Makes for a light easy to carry full size gun in a sense. And the longer barrel works good because it pneumatic not Co2. You can pump them up and the longer barrel helps the pressure move the pellet kind of like a pcp gun.

          I have had several of them with different barrels and that’s part of the reason I like them is they are easy to mod.

          Oh and I had red dots, scopes, a NC Star green laser on my long barrel 1322/1377’s with the 1399 stock. I even had Dave at RAI make a adapter and I had a AR adjustable but stock on it. You can’t do that with the gun you listed above. And I do like them guns also. It’s just that I like that the 1322/1377’s can be modded. Just my opinion.


          • It is cool about the platform, that so many things can be done to personalize it.

            From hunting guns to match grade.

            Me and my 3 year old daughter were just plinking with mine the other day. She was sitting on my lap and telling me when she thought the dot was on the can.


            • Sam
              My daughters are 14 and 17 right now. I taught them to shoot with my modded 1377 and my old 760. They were around 6 when I started teaching them. They will give ole dad a run for his money nowdays.

              I had a red dot on both of the guns and I also had the laser on them and mounted with those barrel dovetail adapter Crosman has. That way I could see on the target how they were aiming with the laser while they were looking through the red dot. You can also see how much they shake.

              But yep they are nice little guns to learn with.


      • Are there different breeches for .177 & .22 or do you just need the right size bolt?
        Yes the gun was purchased with nodding in mind but also a backpack gun so I’ll probably have more than one barrel for it, keeping in mind that all the parts I get for it will interchange with the 22xx series.


        • Reb
          The Crosman steel breeches that PA carries have two different part numbers for .177 and .22 caliber. I do know that the bolts are different so I’m not sure if they interchange in the breech. I always use them as they came in a assembly. Never tryed to mix them.

          And the Discovery breeches also carry different part numbers than the Crosman steel breeches and they also have different part numbers in relation to caliber.

          But here is something to watch for. The Discovery breeches verses the Crosman steel breeches the small front attaching screw that’s under the bolt are in different locations.

          If you want a direct bolt on to the 2240 or the 1322/1377 use the Crosman steel breech. The Discovery breeches will work though but you won’t have the little front screw. The barrel band clamp will hold the breech in place on the 2240 but not on the 1377/1322’s .

          And you know you have to drill the front sight out so the barrel will slip through that pump linkage attaching spot. Or you can order one for a 760. That way it’s the right diameter for the barrel and it has a bolt and nut to tighten the barrel so it will stay in place better.



        • Sam
          You got it. I usually mention that and forgot all about it. I like quiet air guns for multiple reasons.

          I’ll put it this way. I live in the country so it aint about neighbors.


  33. SL,

    Thanks again for that list of links. Now I know what a Stirling Engine is…and a Jensen Intercepter, too…as well as the correct way to write a product review that is both useful and hrelpful to others…I am so glad to have stumbled onto the family that IS this blig and it’s members…and so sorry to have nearly missed one of it’s brightest-shining stars.

    Denny


  34. B.B.

    What an extraordinary story of a fascinating woman. It’s like the title of Al Michael’s book “You Can’t Be Making this Up”. Not only was she your spouse but she was also your muse who inspired you into your prolific writing career, much to the benefit of your hoards of avid fans. I cannot wait to read Part II.



  35. BD & REB–I remember when Veronica Lake wrapped her hair in some kind of net. She posed in front of some kind of machine. Women were going to work in defense factories. Many copied Veronica’s long hair and had accidents. Veronica was part of a program to promote safety in factories. (1940,s movie star, for the youngsters info.) Duskwight– I have eaten in many Indian restaurants. They do not have a Websters dictionary for Indian food. The same dish is often spelled differently . The rule seems to be, if it sounds right, its spelled right. It is like the argument between anthropologists who spell neanderTal and those who spell it neanderTHAL. And then there is the translation of Chinese into phonetic English, but I don’t want to go there. Ed PS even my spellcheck program wants me to change the correct neanderTAL to THAL ! Comments from anyone who has a knowledge of the German language will be appreciated.





    • I think they’re both correct, but anthropologists are more likely to use the older “thal” spelling while in everyday German, “tal” is more common.

      Normally, “Tal” (=valley) is not spelled with an “h” in modern German.




  36. Tom,
    I am so sorry to hear about Edith. I have been reading both of your reviews and comments long enough to think of you as family. My wife asks all the time what I am reading while she is watching tv, usually I am reading this blog. This is the first time I have posted, l don’t usually say much, but had to express my sorrow for you. I will miss her straight forward honesty and tremendous effort she put in at pyramid air and this blog. What an amazing life she had.


  37. BB, this is perhaps your greatest column ever!

    I think I speak for many when I say that I felt great personal loss when Edith passed away. Although I only met her in person once, she has been a friend and respected colleague since the days of “The Airgun Letter” and the original “yellow forum.” She was gifted not only with knowledge of the subject–but with the humor, discretion, management skills, and writing talents to effectively manage us, your motley gang of fans and fellow enthusiasts!

    These notes are a great gift to all of us in our grief. It must have been difficult for you, but is very much appreciated by us. Thank you…and I am really looking forward to Part 2!


  38. B.B.
    My heart goes out to you. What a very special woman you were blessed with. I cannot imagine the pain, and I hope that I don’t have to for quite a while. Edith was obviously a very special woman, who was lucky to have you.
    Peace.
    John


  39. Wow BB I sit here reading this and crying my eyes out. My Dad was in WWll and told us many times that people here in this free country have no idea how the rest of this world lived,how very true. He was medic in the army and spoke many times of the horrible life that others were forced to live. You were blessed to have had such a wonderful woman in your life and I for one will miss the writings of your lovely wife. My heart breaks for you and am so very sorry for your loss. I pray your mind will be filled with the many wonderful times you were blessed to have had with her. You remain in my prayers BB. May God bless you and your family and comfort you.

    Ellicott


  40. What a wonderful tribute to a remarkable woman. I was born in Germany in 1960, but have lived my life all over the world. Finally settling in West Michigan.


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