American Shotgun Steward

To say Eric Klein enjoys American vintage shotguns would be a major understatement. Over the past 50 years, the New Jersey native turned his passion into an American treasure that most museums would envy.

Here’s a snapshot of what he’s invested into a stunning Gun Room on Brays Island Plantation:

  • Approximately 100 guns produced during the “Golden Age of Shotgunning” ranging from 1880 to World War II.
  • Guns owned by prominent American families including Wrigley, Peterman, Chrysler, and provenances like the New York Athletic Club.
  • Makes include Parker, LC Smith, AH Fox, Ithaca, Lefever, and Winchester.
  • The only known Ithaca .410 grade 7 in existence.
  • Favorite Shotgun: Fox FE grade 20 gauge.

“In my mind, shotguns are most appealing because they are a microcosm of American society,” shares Klein. “In Europe, shooting and hunting was the provenance of the aristocracy and at one time, every level of American society used shotguns. Manufacturers produced guns ranging from $25 for utilitarian hunting models to upwards of $1200 for fancy target and hunting guns used at high-end sporting clubs. Finding high condition original guns in the utilitarian grades is particularly challenging and rewarding.”

When asked about his favorite part of the Brays Island lifestyle, Eric gives a quick nod to fellow owners: “They are truly a collection of remarkable people and next to that, I love the shooting sports.”