Ernest Hemingway's African Safari Rifle Up for Auction
A remarkable double-barreled elephant gun made by London's Westley Richards in 1913 that belonged to Ernest Hemingway and was used by the famed author on safari in Africa is being offered for auction on March 14. The impressive .577-caliber Nitro Express, the starring lot at James D. Julia Auctioneers' Important Firearms sale in Fairfield, Maine, comes with the original case and accessories and is expected to fetch between $150,000 – $200,000. The 16-pound rifle, engraved with rhinos and tigers and designed to bag the biggest game, has its own chapter in the new book Hemingway's Guns: The Sporting Arms of Ernest Hemingway.
Gallery: Ernest Hemingway's Safari Gun
The famed author, whose renowned works on Africa include The Snows of Kilimanjaro, used the rifle on safari in 1953 and chronicled the experience for Look magazine. He also carried it with him aboard his fishing boat Pilar in Cuba when patrolling for German U-boats during World War II. The author later brought it with him to Key West, and the imposing firearm has been on display at the Curry Mansion Inn there for several years. As The Classicist related in this 2009 column, gunsmith Westley Richards was established in 1812 and secured several Royal Warrants.