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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Randy has lots of information about the Elliott brothers, and I thought this might be of interest

http://www.kansascitystories.com/Sports/shooting/shooting.html

The three Elliott brothers opened their new Shooting park at Washington Park on May 4, 1893. The targets were live pigeons. At the grand opening of the Elliot park, three live-bird shoots were held, with different entrance fees for each category: five birds: $5; seven birds: $7; ten birds: $10. The fees were pooled and made up the prize money for the best shooters.
The Elliotts; Robert S., Jim (known as J.A.R.), and Dave, had opened their first shooting park in Kansas City in 1887. Dave went to work for the Winchester company; JAR became known as one of the best live pigeon shooters in the country. The shooting park was left to the management of Robert Sage Elliott, “Uncle Bob.”[1]



For the grand opening, Uncle Bob devised an elaborate new point system aimed at assuring that the experts didn’t win all the money. The new system, explained the Kansas City Times report, “forces all shooters to compete in a certain class and every contestant has a chance of winning his entrance fee or more by shooting out men in his class.”[2]
About 100 sportsmen came out for the event. Reported the Kansas City Star, “Everybody was delighted with the park, which promises to be the most picturesque and best arranged of any shooting ground in the country.” The highlight was the ten live bird event, which attracted twenty-five entries at $5 (not $10, apparently, as reported in the Kansas City Times), for a purse of $125, less the price of the birds, which reduced the winnings to $62.50. Under the old scoring system, the purse would be divided into four parts of 40, 30, 20, and 10 per cent “for shooters having scored 10, 9, 8, and 7.” Those tying on the scores would then shoot off for the money to which each class was entitled.
Under Elliott’s new system, described by the Star as “like a Chinese puzzle,” the purse was divided into three classes with 45 percent going to one group of ten shooters, 30 percent to a second group of nine, and 25 percent to a third group of eight. These group purses were then to be subdivided into three moneys.
The shooting was good, reported the Star, despite the unfamiliar grounds and “the peculiarities of the flight of the birds,” but Elliot’s new scoring system was “so intricate that it gave rise to innumerable arguments and the shooters who were mixed up in it, together with Mr. Elliott and the scorers, were troubled with a nightmare of mathematical problems…. Mr. Elliott is not dismayed, however, but will continue to work on it until he does get something practical out of it, and as he is still young and full of vigor, he may be successful.”[3]
Shooting was promised every afternoon until the opening of the state tournament later in the month, though it was expected that the old scoring system would be used for the tournament.
At the sixteenth annual three day tournament of the Missouri State Game and Fish Protective Association, nearly four thousand pigeons were “sacrificed,” reported the Times, in an article titled “End of the pigeon killing.” The shoot was a “successful one…. Most of the birds were fast flyers and a stiff wind was blowing nearly all the time across the grounds, with interfered with a good many scores, but the average was up to the mark.”
The tournament began with a “triple rise shoot,” three pigeons released at once. In the ten bird shoot on the second day, only five men paid the $7.50 fee. The clay pigeon, or “mud pie” shoot on the second day, attracted few takers; “Every man seemed completely worn out from the hard work of the week.”

1905 Missouri State Championship at Washington Park



Although clay targets were widely used, there was no objection to the mass killing of pigeons. A live pigeon shoot was an event at the Olympics in 1900. In 1902, the last live pigeon national championship (Grand American Handicap at Live Birds) was hosted by Robert Elliott at Blue River Park. 1903 was the last year live birds were used in the state shooting competition in Illinois.[4]

[1] From the History of the Kansas City Trapshooters Association: http://www.kctraps.com/history.html

1887: Robert and Jim (J.A.R.) Elliott (Dave arrived shortly thereafter) open a shooting park in Kansas City near the Blue River. In 1889, the traps were moved to 15th & Montgall. In 1893 the club was moved again to Washington Park and was the site of competitions for the “Kansas City Star American Wing Shot Cup Champion at Pigeons”, the Schmelzer Trophy for “100 inanimate targets thrown reversed pull”, the Hazard “Blue Ribbon” Cup, and many other Challenge Cups and Tournaments..
1901: Robert Elliott’s Blue River Park was opened at 7500 Independence Ave., Kansas City, just west of the Blue River. The club sponsored the last Grand American Handicap at Live Birds in 1902
http://library.la84.org/SportsLibrary/SportingLife/1902/VOL_39_NO_04/SL3904001.pdf
1921: Robert Elliott’s son, Russell Elliott, and a handful of shooters organized the Kansas City Trap Shooting Association (KCTA). Russell assumed management of the shooting park.
1934: The shooting park moved from the Kansas City location to Elliott’s Shooting Park at 9500 E. 75th St., Raytown. The Elliotts sold the club in 1977.

[2] “Current sporting events.” Kansas City Times, May 3, 1893, p. 2.
[3]“Like a Chinese puzzle.” Kansas City Star, May 3, 1893, p. 3.
[4] Illinois State Trapshooters Association http://illinoistrapshooters.org/history/ista-history\


The R.S. Elliott Arms Co., selling a complete line of sporting goods, was at 1508-10 Grand Ave., 2 blocks from the Schmelzer Arms Co. building at 1214-1218 Grand.

 

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A great Blast from my past ... In 1968, 69 & 70 I lived on the grounds at the Elliot's Trap Park
located on 75th in Raytown, Mo in the old Pigeon House that I rented for 60.00 per month ... pictured below is before they converted it to a rental cabin.

I was a Photographer at the time and along with Jack Thompson we photographed the Tournament Champions that hung on the walls of the Club House. Christine Elliott Heath and her 2nd husband George would have the Club Member Bachelors over for dinner at their Mansion once a year. I got to sit at the foot of the long harvest table when I broke my first non registered 100 Straight. Christine always sat at the head of the table. George Heath taught me how to shoot Trap and with his Rem. 1100 I broke 23 /25 for my first attempt, what a great coach. . George and I became buddies ... sort of a father & son friendship. He helped me to select a Rem. 1100 at the family store Elliott Arms & Sporting, pictured below. The Store Manager was Sam Knott and he went thru all of the inventory until he was satisfied with a pick of the litter. I still have the gun and will take it to the grave with me and instead of a casket I will be buried in my Gun Safe.
 

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Here is a great old celluloid from the 1902 Grand American held at The Elliott`s Shooting Park...

Sportalluring

View attachment 548073
It is interesting that the Medal says Kansas City MO when the park was located in Raytown. Raytown was established in 1854 so I am a little confused why it said that.

On another note, I worked as trap help at Elliots in about 1983 or so. It was a hot and dirty job setting targets on the old traps.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Blue River Park was at 7500 Independence Ave., Kansas City, MO just west of the Blue River and what is now Winner Park. The KCTA moved to Raytown in 1934
Blue River Park is now out south at 470 & Holmes, the old Minor Park
Blue River Park & Athletic Fields | Kansas City Parks

"Trap in Kansas City" and the Washington Park Gun Club had moved to the Blue River Park
http://library.la84.org/SportsLibrary/SportingLife/1904/VOL_42_NO_19/SL4219020.pdf

The 1912 Western Handicap
Forest and Stream

BTW: I grew up on Doc Wilson's farm on the SE corner of 87th St. and Raytown Road, up from the old gun club on Brickyard Rd. and the Belger's place.
 

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Around 1886 J.A.R.(Jim Elliott) came to Kansas City. His brothers Bob, (R..S Elliott also known as Uncle Bob) , Dave came a couple years later. There was another brother John he lived in Maryland and never resided in the west. J.A.R. opened a shooting park in 1887 on the Blue River. He moved his traps to 15th&Montgall in 1889. In 1893 he moved again to a more permanent park at Washington Park north of Mt. Washington Cementary (Kansas City Mo.). Then in 1901 Uncle Bob (R.S.Elliott) established the Shooting Park at Independence Ave & Blue River, host of the 1902 & 1903 Grand American (7500 E. Independence Ave. Kansas City, MO.) and shooting continued there until 1934 when Russell Elliott (son of R.S.) built a new shooting park in Raytown Missouri. Shooting continued there until the last shot was fired November 17, 1985. About a year later members of the club & the KCTA opened a new shooting park at Smithville Lake, known as the Kansas City Trapshooters Association and still shooting to date...

Sportalluring
 

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and The Kansas City Trapshooters Association was organized January 1, 1922. It`s first Board of Directors;
C.J Mustion, Ed Costello, D.G. Barstow, Dr. F.M. Planck, D.K.(Dud) Dickinson, R.S. Elliott and R. W. Elliott...

Sportalluring
 

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I might add that when I was shooting with George Heath a young man by the name of Lynn Gipson was learning how to become a Trap Loader and Mechanic. Later he was promoted to Trap Boy Supervisor and then Club Manager. His title remained thru the building and move of the KCTA from Raytown to Smithville Lake 30 years ago. After a number of years he was offered the position of Execrative CEO for the move from Vandalia to Sparta. Still to this day he is at the top of the ladder of the ATA.
 

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As some will remember, Sam Knott's wife was Sugar Knott. About the sweetest soul ever walked this earth!

milt

past pres. KCTA.
 

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Milt ... you are spot on with your comment on Sugar !!! ... Sam and Sugar shot the Club Program every Sunday and made a great looking couple on the line up. I shot with them many times and enjoyed their well mannered company.
 

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Swerving only slightly off topic, young Russ Elliot was a fairly prominent shooter in the 1950+/- timeframe. He was the son of one of the three brothers. Does anyone know whose son he was?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
History of the KCTA
On November 27, 1921, Uncle Bob’s son, Russ Elliott, and a handful of local shooters officially organized the KCTA as a shooting association, supported by a board of directors and separate from the ownership and management of the shooting facility. Russell soon assumed complete management of the shooting park, and in 1934 moved the Blue River Park to the newly constructed, ultra modern Elliott’s Shooting Park at 9500 East 75th Street, Raytown Missouri.

He won a shoot off at the 1941 GAH, and here's an image
The Lincoln Star from Lincoln, Nebraska · Page 36
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
The City Directory for Kansas City 1909 lists John R. Elliott as a salesman for R.S. Elliott Arms Co.
Looks like he was also interested in golf :)
The Rotarian

And was President of R.S. Elliott Arms Co. "established by his uncles" after 1913. Maybe the son of the John Elliott that never left Maryland?
Missouri Valley Special Collections : Item Viewer
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
1955. I bought a sweatshirt there about 83', and don't recall any guns on display. C&R Specialty was open over on Baltimore. Simmons moved out to Olathe in the 70s. Crown Center had opened, but Grand Ave. was no longer grand at that point.

 

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Actually the area known as Raytown Missouri, did exist back in the 1800's but was not an official city until 1950. This is straight from the Raytown Chamber of Commerce web site "Raytown was incorporated as a city on July 17, 1950; the citizens wished to escape the annexation to Kansas City and to have a small self-governed town."

Just FYI, the show Mama's Family was supposed to be set in Raytown Missouri. Supposedly Carol Burnett was driving through Raytown and was stopped by a cop named Bubba and she decided to make a show based on it.
 

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Raytown pre 50's was known as the Lost Township. Kind of like a Mule with no past and no future. My Great Grandfather settled there in 1868 and helped build the first school known as Stormy Point Elementary and the Church known as Highpoint Baptist Church that I attended as a teenager. My Great Grandfather "Daniel" Grandfather "Sam" and my Dad "Joe" lived on the family farm all of their lives. I graduated from Raytown High school in 1963. I started Shooting Trap at Elliott's when I bought the Raytown Pool Hall in 1967 and sold it in 1970 to Don Brink who still owns and operates it today. I still shoot at the new Elliott's (KCTA) now located at Smithville MO. and managed by Rachel Hopkins who will be presented a special award celebrating her achievements in Trapshooting.

You are invited and encouraged to attend a presentation for Rachel Hopkins on Tuesday, October 25, at 7:00 PM at the KCTA clubhouse.
Between league shooting, Rachel will be recognized for her many accomplishments in registered trapshooting by State Representative Ken Wilson, Clay County Presiding Commissioner Jerry Nolte and Clay County Sherriff Paul Vescovo.
 
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