There’s a lot of history here, and we’re just talking about the participants in this story:
On the Wednesday of the first week of Minnesota deer hunting, Kenneth Felt went looking for a buck. Living not far from Itasca State Park, in northern Minnesota, on the same land he’s occupied for decades, he knew a few animals were in the area. So he grabbed his rifle and a handful of cartridges, and walked out his farmhouse door, toward his four-wheeler.
Felt is 93 years old. But he didn’t consider his age a problem. And while his long gun hadn’t been leveled in the direction of a game animal for more than 100 years, and then in his grandfather’s hands in Sweden, Kenneth had practiced with the firearm enough to know it was accurate.
“I took the rifle hunting a few times last year, but I wasn’t too serious about getting a deer because I was worried about field-dressing it,’’ he said. “My heart is bad and it would be kind of difficult to do that.’’
Felt’s gun was a .50 caliber Husqvarna with a Remington rolling block action, the same type of rifle George Custer carried into the Battle of the Little Bighorn.
Based upon what I can find on the Internet, Mr. Felt’s rifle is probably a factory-sporterized version of the Husqvarna military rifle that the company sold between 1877-79 as the “Remington Model 9,” chambered in 12.17x44mm R, a blackpowder centerfire based off a nearly identical rimfire cartridge. The site that seemed to have the most information on these rare rifles didn’t have this exact variant pictured, however, so I can’t state this with any degree of certainty, and I’m amazed that Mr. Felt’s son was able to find ammunition for it.
In any event, it is awesome to see that Mr. Felt still able to hunt at 93 years old, using such a beautiful piece of firearms history that is probably between 134-136 years old.