The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

For poking fun and off topic subjects
Post Reply
User avatar
Cat Man
Posts: 155
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2015 10:28 pm

The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by Cat Man »

In North Eastern WI in the midwestern USA we have some interesting shooting traditions. Krag shooters may find this interesting. Various European immigrant groups setteled here including a significant group from Holland. For the past 172 years, the people of Hollandtown USA hold an old tradition called a "Schut" the second Sunday in August. A shooting compitition where marksmen (and now women too) shoot at a sort of giant duck decoy at the top of a 75 foot tall tower. Taking turns knocking off pieces until the last piece of the duck falls. Winner is the Schut king for the year. While looking at some archive photos from the 1950s I noticed this Schut King and his queen. He is holding the remains of the downed "duck". Yes that is a Krag! Wow shooting parts off an oversize duck decoy on a tower with a rifle. Safe enough back then? Probably not. Today the event uses shotguns on the shooting field at the local game farm where we shoot sporting clays. Much safer than shooting next to the church in town where it was held for many years.

Jeff The Caterpillar Man
Attachments
Danish Krag Schut.jpg
Danish Krag Schut.jpg (93.4 KiB) Viewed 485 times

User avatar
Cat Man
Posts: 155
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2015 10:28 pm

Re: The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by Cat Man »

More Schut history.

Jeff
Attachments
History Hollandtown Schut.jpg
History Hollandtown Schut.jpg (346.75 KiB) Viewed 484 times

FredC
Posts: 1604
Joined: Fri May 31, 2013 4:38 pm
Location: Dewees Texas

Re: The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by FredC »

Interesting competition. A couple of miles away there will be so much space between falling bullets that probably do no harm will be done. That is probably not certainly. I have held back shots when I was uncertain if a person could be behind the target. Even when I was working on a 600 acre ranch and no one was supposed to be there. You just never know.

User avatar
Dick Hosmer
Posts: 1973
Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2005 4:11 pm

Re: The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by Dick Hosmer »

I remember reading about that event in an American Rifleman article from the early 40s, maybe even late 30s. Showed a competitor (a pastor, IIRC) firing a .45-70 rifle at the bird - the idea being to throw as much lead as possible, but I THINK shotguns (i.e. rifled slugs and or spread of shot) were outlawed as it was basically a marksmanship event. Shooting was done at an angle of about 45°. I'll try to find it.

TAR has become less and less attractive to me, started south in the 60s - now every issue just has another new plastic pistol. I'm a charter member of Man-at-Arms which began in 1979; am at least thinking of dumping my Rifleman mags after that date.

Doubly Reincarnated
Posts: 109
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2021 1:51 am

Re: The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by Doubly Reincarnated »

There were (unlikely still held) such shooting events in German-speaking countries, maybe elsewhere, at least into the 1920s. The subject has appeared a few times on the ASSRA Forum over the years. Struck me as "bloody dangerous" and "not a good idea" when I read about them there.

But they had boys (village idiots?) stationed in wooden shelters during their Schuetzen matches. The lads would mark targets, shout back the scores, and dash back to the shelters. Old photos of the shelters show bullet holes in the walls. Plus the shooters drank a bit during their matches.

I agree with Dick Hosmer's views on the American Rifleman. A friend called it "The Monthly Alarmist" long before they began pushing plastic pistols. I'm an NRA member because it's a requirement of the two gun clubs where I'm a member, something to do with liability insurance. I asked a club officer about that. The answer was raised eyebrows and a shake of his head, as in "don't ask and hope like anything that we never need it."

User avatar
butlersrangers
Posts: 8403
Joined: Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:35 pm
Location: Below the Bridge, Michigan

Re: The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by butlersrangers »

It is really cool that 'Cat Man' posted a photo of a Shooter and his Krag, used to shoot a painted bird off of a tall vertical pole.

I remembered reading about this sport being popular in Belgium with crossbows (shooting small stones, IIRC).
It was so popular that I think the occupying Germans even allowed it during WW2, on condition no Germans were shot by crossbow.

A little searching and it appears this sport was popular all over Europe 600 to 800 years ago: (France, Flanders, Spain, Germany, Scotland, England, and Denmark).

The bird target was placed on top of 90-foot poles, windmills, and Church Steeples. The sport started with longbows and transitioned to crossbows and firearms.

It had various names: Popinjay, pole archery, Papingo, Papegai (parrot), and Vogelschiessen (Bird Shooting).

Variations of this shooting sport are still practiced in Belgium, Great Britain, Germany, Scandinavia, Baltic States, and parts of Canada and the U.S.

It looks like some shooting sports use to be more fun with festivities, alcohol and nudity!

BTW - I am not advocating for nudity in the shooting sports. Some things cannot be unseen!
Attachments
popinjay shooting - 1600s.jpg
popinjay shooting - 1600s.jpg (141.94 KiB) Viewed 290 times
popinjay - 1657.jpg
popinjay - 1657.jpg (175.28 KiB) Viewed 290 times
Archery at windmill - Pieter Brueghel the Elder The-Fair-of-Saint-Georges-Day.jpg
Archery at windmill - Pieter Brueghel the Elder The-Fair-of-Saint-Georges-Day.jpg (339.8 KiB) Viewed 290 times
Diana and her Nymphs.jpg
Diana and her Nymphs.jpg (302.08 KiB) Viewed 290 times
Popinjay Bruges.jpg
Popinjay Bruges.jpg (38.71 KiB) Viewed 290 times
Last edited by butlersrangers on Tue Aug 16, 2022 7:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
butlersrangers
Posts: 8403
Joined: Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:35 pm
Location: Below the Bridge, Michigan

Re: The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by butlersrangers »

Pole Shooting, (not Pole Dancing), and I don't understand the 'monkey men' in the first illustration? Satire about sports enthusiasts and early 'tailgating'?

"American Rifleman" thoughts:

I am slowly working my way backward through my accumulated stacks and tossing more modern copies. I clip out some arms history articles and keep them in manila folders, (God knows why). I will never read them again and my wife or kids will recycle them.

I am a 'magazine junky' (Hoarder). I have never subscribed to "National Geographic" or "Scientific American" knowing that stacks of magazines would take over my house!

My old "Rifleman" copies were once used and viewed as a valuable Arms Library/Reference Source. I haven't referred to them in years.
Still, the copies I bought as a kid in the 1950's and 60's, (and have kept), display amazing cover photographs, arms 'take-down' guides, and a myriad range of interesting articles. I studied them cover to cover. They influenced me in many ways.
Attachments
popinjay field events.jpg
popinjay field events.jpg (327.27 KiB) Viewed 287 times
papegai - French 16th Cent..jpg
papegai - French 16th Cent..jpg (21.72 KiB) Viewed 288 times
Papingo target birds - Scotland.jpg
Papingo target birds - Scotland.jpg (225.2 KiB) Viewed 288 times

User avatar
Cat Man
Posts: 155
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2015 10:28 pm

Re: The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by Cat Man »

Wow, great history. We did stop at our local Holland Town Schut on Sunday afternoon. I wanted to see how it was shot. Large turnout. Parking lot was full. Many familys with lawn chairs, picnic lunches. Kids and grand kids. All wearing hearing protection. No alcahol until after the shooting is done. There was an announcer on the PA calling the relays, the shooters names and giving lively commentary. The head, tail and wings were gone and they were knocking chunks off the body of the bird. Talked to a few shooters. They don't use Krags but everyone was shooting 12 Ga scoped shotguns with slugs. By the look of the empties piled on the ground, lots and lots of slugs. Plenty of younger shooters, so I think the tradition will continue. The big banquet dinner was all set to follow at 4 PM in the lodge after the winner is crowned. Plenty of cold beer on ice, waiting for the winners. That's another Wisconsin tradition.

Thanks for the replies.

Jeff The Caterpillar Man

User avatar
butlersrangers
Posts: 8403
Joined: Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:35 pm
Location: Below the Bridge, Michigan

Re: The Hollandtown Shut with a Krag

Post by butlersrangers »

Shooting at a high angle upward, at a small target, was good practice for being able to hit Defenders of a fortress, who were dropping stones, pouring boiling-oil, or shooting downward on vulnerable Attackers.

It was also said to have been practiced by Naval Archers to be able to take out enemy archers in the opponents rigging.

Somethings that look very ill conceived, when examined to a degree, may have a very sound origin.

If the KCA Forum had 'like' and 'dislike' buttons, maybe members could select a "Captain Popinjay", each day, for the most beneficial post and award virtual 'sashes' to other meritorious contributions?

Ouch! shot myself in the foot, again .....

Post Reply