One of the most often-seen unusual weapons from World War II is the Haight Fist Gun, also known as the OSS Sedgley Glove Gun.
US Navy Captain (later Rear Admiral) Stanley Haight envisioned a way for the sailors from the Navy's Construction Battalions to protect themselves at a moment’s notice. These men, known as Seabees, often worked to hack aircraft runways and logistical facilities out of the jungle on islands still occupied by Japanese forces.
Often carrying hand tools rather than weapons, they could easily be surprised by attacking Japanese soldiers appearing out of the surrounding jungle. Haight wanted to give them a last-ditch method for defending themselves in these circumstances. In February 1944, he applied for a patent for the Haight Fist Gun, which would later be manufactured by R.F. Sedgley, Inc. Approximately 52 Fist Guns were manufactured, including prototypes.
The Haight Fist Gun is a single-shot, smoothbore .38 S&W barrel mounted on top of a heavy leather glove using six brass rivets. The firing mechanism was a plunger which would initiate when pushed directly into the target. Reloading the single-shot weapon was time consuming so the wearer only realistically had one chance to save himself. The glove could be worn while handling tools or operating a vehicle and fired if needed. The wearer could feign surrender by holding their hands up in the air, thereby concealing the pistol from the enemy’s view.
Now available is the illustration accompanying the original patent application for the Haight Fist Gun by inventor Stanley M Haight. The patent application was submitted in February 1944, and awarded in July 1947.
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