It seems pistols in 1867 had no safety catches. Apparently, lots of guns still don’t. My source is the great and infallible internet, so it must be true.
I’m writing about Reconstruction days when the Knights of the White Camellias and the Ku Klux Klan were gearing up to commit mayhem. And crime. My heroine, Lily, a woman with no experience with firearms, is learning how to shoot a pistol because raiders have already besieged the house once and burned a cross in front of her house.
But. There are two little girls in the house. It’s not safe to walk around with a loaded gun. Lily is busy working around the farm and the house all day so that the gun could easily be bumped or fall out of her apron pocket and go off. I haven’t figured out a way for her to have a holster, but, really, now I think of it, I as master of that universe, can give her one. Well, that’s what revisions are for. (Maybe it magically appears in the mail like presents from Amazon.)
So I’m thinking, to be safe, she’ll leave chambers one and two of the revolver empty. That would mean she has to pull the trigger twice, nothing happening, before the revolver would put a bullet behind the hammer. So not until the third squeeze of the trigger would she have a bullet actually fire and kill the bad guy.
This morning, this is the writing process at work. Not thinking about plot, character development, motivation, historical accuracy (got that covered — no safety catches in 1867). Stuck on how the stupid revolver works instead. If I have it wrong, I hope to hear about it. Hopefully before I write the final draft.