A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006. Now a Popeye's fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

Recent entries:
“Pulled pork implies the existence of pushed pork” (9/18)
“You need to get a vaccine that doesn’t work so the vaccine I got that doesn’t work will work” (9/18)
Entry in progress—BP (9/18)
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Entry from April 20, 2006
Carpet Gun
The "carpet gun" was a homemade toy gun, popular with children in East New York (Brooklyn) in the 1940s and 1950s.

Carpet Gun: A homemade toy gun. Again, we turn to John Malar for a description: "This was a gun made out of a long, flat, narrow piece of wood, a clothes pin (the kind that opens and closes), and a rubber band. The rubber band was attached to the far end of the piece of wood. You pulled the rubber band back toward you and held it in place with the clothes pin. You then loaded it with a small piece of roofing shingle and shot it by opening the clothes pin. Carpet guns were extremely inaccurate, but the weapon of choice when we attacked the kids around the corner."

I moved from Brooklyn when I was only ten, so I have some pretty good memories growing up. I played with all the boys (since I had three brothers). My best memories: had a scooter made out of a milk box . . . had my own carpet gun which was made from a piece of wood, a rubber band and wooden clothespin and we would rip up thrown-out linoleum and use the pieces to shoot from the carpet gun.

The author, who celebrates his 55th birthday on Aug. 3, said Yablonsky's memories of weapons he saw on the streets, like carpet guns, were his own childhood memories.

"Only people in East New York had the carpet gun [the predecessor of the zip gun]. It looked like a small crossbow - used in rumbles. It had a trigger mechanism, along with a thick rubber band, and they shot pile and pieces of linoleum. You would aim at noses or an eye, and they lost a nose or an eye."

Ready for a Fabulous Trip down memory lane ... If you were from Brooklyn or if you ever imagined what Brooklyn was like, you'll LOVE this one ! Uncle Bill.
45. As a kid you hit people with water ballons from atop a building, you shot linoleum projectiles from a
carpet gun and you shot paperclips at people with a rubberband.
Posted by Barry Popik
Names/Phrases • (2) Comments • Thursday, April 20, 2006 • Permalink

The statement only people in East New York had carpet guns is not true i grew up in Manhattan and we had carpet guns pea shooters and all other kinds of toys just like all the other areas news traveled fast in NY and all kids knew about these things. tha author may be turning 55, i am 65 so that means we must have had them before East New York?

Posted by Sal Murano  on  06/11  at  09:29 PM

And we had them in DABRONX at the same times..See Brooklyn isnt as special as they think!

Posted by CHUCK  on  08/21  at  09:54 AM

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