Pistols: Dazzling Firearms, a New Exhibit at the Eiteljorg Museum Downtown

The Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art presents Pistols: Dazzling Firearms February 6 through April 8. This one of a kind exhibit shares the vast history of decorative guns, owned by famous faces from United States history. Check out this interesting new exhibit at the beloved Indianapolis art museum. The innovation of the American West led to amazing (and deadly) art pieces.

The Eiteljorg Museum on the Indianapolis Canal Walk and White River Sate Park offers a glimpse into life in the American West. The last frontier of America offered citizens a chance to explore and be wild. Things were just done differently back then. For instance, the director of the Dodge City Cowboy Band used a Colt revolver in place of a baton. Leading the musicians by waving his gun around, the conductor would punctuate the music with staccato shots of fire from the gun. The beautiful dull blued metal of his Colt revolver is just one example of the embellishment found on pistols during this age.

Pistols: Dazzling Firearms, on loan from the Autry National Center’s Museum of the American West, delves into a 160 year tradition of handgun decoration in America. See pistols once owned by George Custer, Annie Oakley, “Wild Bill” Hickok, President Ronald Reagan, President John F. Kennedy, Gene Autry, Tom Mix and more. Richly inlaid with gold, silver and platinum and decorated with semi precious stones, these guns are truly works of art. Some are even engraved with historic scenes.

Visitors to the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art can even meet a famous face and artists or two. Indianapolis kids will get a kick out of chatting with Annie Oakley herself, as an actor interpreter takes on the role of this gun slinging madam. Famous for her ability to “split a playing card edge on and put five or six more holes in it before it touched the ground,” this sharpshooter will be in the galleries Tuesday through Fridays from 11:30 am to 3:30 pm and Saturdays and Sundays from 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

Pick her brain about her mother of pearl pistol or her gold Smith and Wesson, on display at this Indianapolis art gallery. With shiny guns in holster, the light bounce of the pistols made her shows thrilling to audiences. In addition to meeting Annie Oakley, guests to the exhibit can learn about the process of handgun engraving from master engravers in the gallery.

Mike Dubber, of Evansville, Indiana, has worked on guns for Norman Schwarskopf, Juan Carlos King of Spain and Pope John Paul II. Dubber will be at this Indianapolis attraction on certain weekends from February 20 to April 18. Sean McVicker, of Belfast, Northern Ireland, is a master engraver commissioned by groups like the United States Marine Corp, the United State Department of the Navy and the United States Air Force. He creates dazzling heirloom piece through a unique approach. He will be at the Eiteljorg Museum from February 6 through February 14.

Video: Pistols: Dazzling Firearms at the Eiteljorg Museum, Indianapolis, Indiana


Opening day of this exceptional exhibit is February 6. Take a tour led by Chief Curatorial Officer James Nottage at 11:00 am and 2:00 pm. Meet Annie Oakley, and see demonstrations from master engraver Sean McVicker. Plus a performance from Michael Flowers from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm and Indianapolis artist Mike Altman will be on hand from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm making caricatures.

Special events in March will keep this Indianapolis art exhibit lively. March 13 the Eiteljorg welcomes members of the Indiana Antique Arms Collectors Association to present a one time show of pieces from their personal collections. Wild Women of the West, like Annie Oakley, will be featured in a special spring performance on March 20 and 21, along with the Indianapolis Women’s Chorus.

Don’t miss Pistols: Dazzling Firearms at the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art. For additional information about this Indianapolis event, visit their official website.

Located in Indianapolis downtown, the Eiteljorg has prime Indianapolis real estate when it comes to planning a fun day out in Indy. Check out these Indianapolis restaurants and Indianapolis bars to satisfy the appetite this exhibit will no doubt give you. Stay tuned to Fun City Finder.com for all the latest on fun things to do in Indianapolis.

Pistols: Dazzling Firearms
February 6 to April 18

Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art
500 West Washington Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204