Tim Van Leiden, owner of Gun Guys, 412 S. Main St., Ottawa, purchased the lever-action Henry .22 LR rifle from Historical Armory Inc., Fort Collins, Colo., he said.
“It’s a collector’s hang-on-the-wall rifle,” Van Leiden said. “We’re a dealer for Historical Armory, and after I purchased it I thought that it would be a good way to raise donations for [not-for-profit] organizations.”
Van Leiden plans to divide the donations equally among the Franklin County Historical Society, the Ottawa Police Foundation DARE Camp and the Franklin County Sheriff’s Sam Smith Scholarship Fund, he said. Van Leiden is a member of the police foundation and Smith scholarship boards.
“I’m hoping to raise $1,000 for each one,” Van Leiden said.
The rifle is tailored specifically for Franklin County. Some of the detailed engravings on the buttstock, forearm and receiver include the U.S. Flag, the Kansas flag, Franklin County Courthouse, Ottawa’s Dietrich Cabin, a denotation of Kansas entering the Union as the 34th State Jan. 29, 1861, and other historic etchings.
“It’s pretty cool looking,” Van Leiden, who has the rifle on display at Gun Guys, said.
Donors will have their names placed in a drawing for the rifle, he said.
“We plan to have the drawing the last weekend in September,” he said.
Historical Armory is making 25 of the historic lever-action Henry rifles for each county in Kansas, with each rifle individually numbered one through 25, Van Leiden said.
“I’ve sold seven or eight of the [Franklin County] rifles,” Van Leiden said.
The manufacturer makes a proof model of the special edition rifle before putting it into limited production. That is what makes the proof model being given away in the drawing a unique rifle that any local collector would love to own, Van Leiden said.
“The proof model is the only one that will ever be made,” Van Leiden said. “There will never be another one like it.”