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'Antiques Roadshow' of guns comes to Medora

Area gun enthusiats who have always wondered how much that gun passed down from generation to generation is worth will have the opportunity to find out next weekend in Medora.

The North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame will host its second annual Gun Road Show for gun owners with one of the nation's top firearms experts on June 13 and 14 in Medora.

Gun owners from throughout the region are invited to dig out their family heirlooms and have them evaluated by firearms experts in something of an "Antique's Roadshow" for firearms.

"We started it last year and I think we will continue it every year. It was very popular," said Darrel Dorgan, executive director of the NDCHF. "It was really surprising the type of things that showed up."

Dorgan said among the firearms that were brought in last year was a Flintlock made in Holland in the mid-1600s and a couple other firearms that were valued at between $15,000-$20,000.

Doing the valuation is National Firearms Museum Curator Doug Wicklund and his team.

Wicklund, who is a noted author who has written extensively about firearms and is often seen on the History Channel, will tell gun owners who have questions, what they have, what it's worth and where it came from.

Joining Wicklund will be historian and firearms collector Gerald Groenewold, of Grand Forks and Mark Halvorson of the North Dakota State Historical Society.

"They can do incredible ... They can tell you where a firearm was made, what its history is," Dorgan said.

Wicklund and the National Rifle Association, in a cooperative effort with the State Historical Society provided the guns for the "Guns of Dakota" exhibit at the NDCHF last summer. Also on display this year is a .36 caliber Colt that once belonged to "Buffalo Bill" Cody.

Those interested in getting their guns valued can do so from 1-4 p.m. on June 13 and from noon-3 p.m. on Sunday at the NDCHF in Medora.

Access will be on a first-come, first-serve basis and all guns will have to be inspected and tagged at the door before they can be brought into the museum.

"It's kind of a fun thing to do," Dorgan said. "Everybody's got grandma's gun or grandpa's gun in the closet and they've got all kinds of stories about it, and where it came from and what it might be worth. Well this is the opportunity."