There were 230 murders reported in the entire United States in 1906. Three of them happened within three months in Seattle. This is an editorial calling for gun control was written after that. It could have just as easily been written today.

Seattle Post Intelligencer 7/13/1906 p6

Too Easy to Get Pistols


Seattle has been shamefully disgraced before the eyes of the country by three murders within a very few weeks of each other. Each murder was committed with a pistol.


It is a difficult matter to regulate, it is true, but it should not be impossible to make it more difficult than it now is for anyone to purchase deadly weapons.


A person determined to commit murder doubtless will find the means of accomplishing the crime, but if it is made difficult for such persons to procure revolvers that class of crime should become less.


One thing needed is a mandatory ordinance with heavy penalty, providing that no dealer in firearms shall sell any weapon to any person without ascertaining that person’s name and address, which shall at once be reported to the chief of police; and that all persons purchasing firearms shall also procure a license from the city to have them their possession. No person desiring to make proper use of firearms can take serious exceptions to some such precautionary provision. It is practically impossible to procure deadly poisons at a druggist’s without a reputable physician’s prescription, or other authorization, and a pistol is as deadly as any poison. The form and prescription of such an ordinance may be left to the city’s law officers, but a new ordinance is needed at once.




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