First designed and created by the prestigious Diedrich and Young Gunworks, Ltd. in London in 1914 as a basic hunting rifle, the .80 Hyper-Mag reached the zenith of its popularity, and well as the depths of notoriety, in 1926. This was the year D&Y introduced the infamous Hyper-Magnum, designed to be the greatest big game cartridge the world had ever known. At this time it also came to the attention of the British Armed Forces, who recognized its potential. Hale and hearty was the soul able to haul the original 42 pound behemoth across the battlefields of Her Majesty’s Empire.
This gun’s military use came to an ignominious end on the banks of the mighty River Ganges on October 7th of the year when Sgt Major Benjamin “Beer Keg” Boffington (nicknamed not only for his shape, but also for his love of India Pale Ale beer), while temporarily assigned to the 20th Duke of Cambridge’s Own Infantry Regiment (aka Brownlow’s Punjabis) foolishly used his D & Y .80 H-Mag to help quell what initially began as minor uprising amongst the indigenous peoples. Unfortunately, this massive round found not only its original target (local male prostitute Badrinath Chandrahar), but continued on its path of destruction through an entire herd of cattle. Now, the cow being an animal sacred to the native populations of the Sub-Continent, this escalated what began as a minor skirmish into a major riot, which caused the death of many people, and even more cattle.
Said Lord John “Jack” Frederick, “While we are somewhat distressed over the unfortunate propensity of the armies of certain nations to use chemical weapons, bombs, and aircraft, we feel this particular round goes beyond the pale. It takes the honor and sportsmanship out of young men dying for their countries”.
After having invested so much money into the development of this rifle and cartridge (as well as Mr. Diedrich’s unfortunate and very unlucky gambling habit), D & Y Gunworks were forced to close their doors for good. This was the end of a proud company with a long and storied history of arming wealthy young men with extraordinarily expensive weapons to kill animals, both of the four- and two-legged variety.
Product photos by Jason Ganwich