North Carolina Sheriff Swaps Bonnie And Clyde-era ‘Tommy Guns’ For New Arms


Historic Thompson SMGs



” When two vintage Thompson fully automatic submachine guns — better known as “Tommy Guns”– were discovered collecting dust in the Forsyth County armory, Sheriff William Schatzman immediately realized their value. They weren’t worth anything in the hands of his officers, but to a collector, it was like a law enforcement version of “Antiques Roadshow.”

  The Sheriff’s Department soon discovered that the pair of vintage guns, made in 1928 and donated by the RJ Reynolds tobacco company decades ago, could fetch $30,000 apiece. Since Schatzman runs a police department and not a museum, he pursued a trade in a firearms police supplier, ultimately netting 88 Bushmaster rifles for the old-time gangster guns.”