Jack O'Connor (writer)

Jack O'Connor (January 22, 1902 – January 20, 1978) was an author and outdoorsman, best known as a writer for Outdoor Life magazine, where he served as Shooting Editor for 31 years.

O'Connor was well known among shooters and hunters as a proponent of the .270 Winchester and 7x57mm Mauser (.275 Rigby) cartridges, and for his extensive knowledge of hunting and shooting.

O'Connor wrote over a dozen non-fiction books including Game in the Desert, The Rifle Book, The Complete Book of Rifles and Shotguns, The Big Game Animals of North America, The Art of Hunting Big Game in North America, and Sheep and Sheep Hunting. He also wrote two western novels, Conquest and Boom Town, and the autobiography of his formative years: Horse and Buggy West: A Boyhood on the Last Frontier.

According to his son Bradford, in an introduction written for the 2004 book The Lost Classics of Jack O'Connor, O'Connor wrote more than 1200 articles for hunting and fishing magazines, and also wrote romantic novellas and articles for Redbook, Mademoiselle, Reader's Digest, Cosmopolitan, Esquire, the literary magazine Midland, and other magazines popular in the 1930s and 1940s.

O'Connor worked as a college professor of English and journalism at Sul Ross State Normal College (today, Sul Ross State University) in Alpine, Texas, until 1945, when he quit teaching to write full-time.

The papers of Jack (John Woolf) O'Connor (1902-1978) of Lewiston, Idaho, were donated to the Washington State University Libraries in November 1978, by his son, Bradford O'Connor, and daughters, Caroline O'Connor McCullam and Katherine O'Connor Baker, all of Seattle. The O'Connor papers (MS 78-50) were enlarged by the addition of an extensive correspondence series (MS 79-17) donated by Margorie E. Poleson, long-time secretary to O'Connor, in May 1979.

In 2006 the Jack O'Connor Hunting Heritage and Education Center opened at Hells Gate State Park on the Snake River, near Lewiston, Idaho. Many of his big game trophies are on display there, along with other memorabilia, including his favorite .270 rifle.

See also


  • O'Connor website
  • Jack O'Connor papers at the Washington State University Libraries
  • Staff (September 2007). "Books by Jack O'Connor". Outdoor Life.
  • Casada, Jim (September 2007). "Remembering Jack O'Connor". Outdoor Life.
  • O'Connor, Jack (1977). The Best of Jack O'Connor. Amwell Press.
  • "Jack O'Connor: An American Original". Outdoor Life Magazine. May 1998.
  • Loftus, Bill (3 February 1985). "Jack O'Connor, Celebrated Writer Lived a Hunter's Code". Lewiston Morning Tribune.
  • Barker, Eric (1 June 2006). "Best of Jack Comes Back, Jack O'Connor Hunting Heritage and Education Center". Lewiston Morning Tribune.
  • Casada, Jim, ed. (2008). The Lost Classics of Jack O'Connor (2nd ed.). W W Norton. ISBN 9780966021233.
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