I am watching a series on Amazon Prime called American Guns. It is pretty interesting but a bit shallow. In one episode, they discussed the origin of the common phrase heading this category. Early on, the three primary firearm components were each made by separate craftsmen. Thus, one would build the firing mechanism or “Lock” (what we would call the receiver), another would build the wooden stock, and a third would build the barrel. The owner would need to acquire all three components and assemble them or have someone do it.
Eventually, manufacturers began providing all three components, sometimes fully assembled. From them an owner could acquire everything needed; i.e. “Lock, Stock and Barrel”.
I found this interesting and it led me to think of other ways firearm history has impacted our vocabulary. For example, someone may be said to stand “ramrod straight” or you may be advised to “keep your powder dry”.
Please share other examples. This is not just an academic exercise but will help demonstrate the pervasive role of firearms and the fundamental right to possess them throughout our country’s history.