Born - July 30, 1956, Lewisburg, PA
Died - February 27, 2005, Mifflinburg, PA
Dave was a 1974 graduate of Mifflinburg Area High School. He became interested in rifle building when his high school shop teacher showed the class Wallace Gusler's movie "The Gunsmith of Williamsburg". Times were different then and the shop teacher allowed Dave to build a rifle as a class project.
Dave began working in the Colonial Williamsburg Gun Shop, as a summer helper, while he was attending Millersville University. He graduated in 1980 with a degree in industrial arts. After one year of teaching high school shop, Dave returned to C.W. Gun Shop as an apprentice to Gary Brumfield and Jon Laubach. Dave was an excellent student who learned quickly and soon joined the ranks of the few modern tradesmen who could make a rifle entirely by hand with 18th century technology. On September 28, 1986 Dave was promoted to journeyman. In addition to working in the shop, he also taught classes at the NMLRA Gunsmithing Seminar at Western Kentucky University and wrote some articles for the Journal of Historical Armsmaking Technology.
About 1988 Dave's health took a turn for the worse and he soon left Colonial Williamsburg. He moved back to Mifflinburg and continued to do a limited amount of gunsmithing. In recent years, his health improved and in 2004 he received a masters degree in counselor education, for Pennsylvania State University. In August of that year he started a new career as a rehabilitation counselor for Department of Labor and Industry, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Dave continued to do fine gunwork until hs untimely heart attack.
Dave was a member of both the National Rifle Association and the Kentucky Rifle Association.
Contact David Lee Wagner Jr. at: