Retired police trainer Bob Givan shares my interest in the history of target development. He recently sent me some pictures from the Stoeger catalog from the 1930’s-1950’s. During that era, Stoeger’s catalog was the Sears Roebuck wish book for shooters. I purchased a few of these catalogs myself to add to my collection.
In the late 1930’s, Stoeger began selling their “bandit” target.
The target was the same size as Fitzgerald’s “Colt Silhouette Target”.
Another variant had ID numbers, which could be used to track hit locations.
The Stoeger target showed an attacker with gun raised to the eye target line, later in the attack process than the Colt Silhouette, which showed someone reaching in their pocket. The 5 point zone in the head and other scoring areas on the Stoeger target are more anatomically correct, with lower scores for the legs and lower torso.
Scoring on the target changed between 1941 and 1942. The bullseye style scoring on the target was the 1941 variant, which influenced the International Rapid Fire and later, the Prehle and B-27 targets.
Stoeger also advertised an armored vest in their 1939 catalog.
Like Richard Davis did with his Second Chance vests many decades later, the company demonstrated their vests with live fire tests while visiting police departments.
Stoeger also included some ‘Ten Ring Tips’ in a 1945 catalog.