JOHNSON & BYE
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JOHNSON & BYE
Previous trade name of airguns manufactured by Johnson & Bye Co. located in Worchester, MA. Iver Johnson was the co-patentee, with Martin Bye, on U.S. patents 176,003 and 176,004 of April 11, 1876. These two Norwegian immigrants had developed an air pistol in which the barrel rotates to form a T-shaped cocking handle. Iver Johnson started his small gunsmithing shop about 1867 and then joined with Bye to form Johnson and Bye about 1875. In 1883 the company became Iver Johnson & Company and soon changed to Iver Johnson Arms & Cycle Works which became famous for inexpensive revolvers.
As noted elsewhere, Johnson, Bye, Bedford, Walker, and Quackenbush all were close associates. Their production, distribution, and ownership is confusing at times: H.M. Quackenbush recorded selling 69 Champion air pistols in 1884. It is not clear who made those 69, or how the total production of Champion air pistols was divided. And Albert Pope of Boston apparently was the main seller of Champion air pistols and also marketed air pistols, made by Quackenbush, under the Pope name. The Bedford & Walker air pistol production started in the Pope plant, then went to the Bedford & Walker plant, and finally transferred to the H.M. Quackenbush factory.
For more information and current pricing on Iver Johnson firearms, please refer to the Blue Book of Gun Values by S.P. Fjestad (also available online).

From Blue Book Publications:


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