Duke Center for Firearms Law
Duke Law logo
Repository of Historical Gun Laws

Jurisdiction: Tennessee

Louis J. Dupree, A Digest of the Ordinances of the City Council of Memphis, from the Year 1826 to 1857 Together with All Acts of the Legislature of Tennessee Which Relate Exclusively to the City of Memphis, with an Appendix Page 161, Image 161 (1857) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

| |

[Ordinances of the City of Memphis, Pistols and Guns, § 1. It shall be unlawful for any person to fire any pistol, gun or other firearm within the limits of this city, unless it be on the occasion of a military parade, and then only by the order o...

[Ordinances of the City of Memphis, Pistols and Guns, § 1. It shall be unlawful for any person to fire any pistol, gun or other firearm within the limits of this city, unless it be on the occasion of a military parade, and then only by the order of an officer of a military company. Nor shall any person raise a kite or any like paper, or balloon, in the limits of the city. Any person violating any of the terms and provisions of this ordinance shall be fined by the recorder not less than five nor more than fifty dollars. If the offense be committed by a slave, he shall receive such corporal punishment as shall be adjudged by the recorder.]

Read More

Seymour Dwight Thompson, A Compilation of the Statute Laws of the State of Tennessee, of a General and Permanent Nature, Compiled on the Basis of the Code of Tennessee, With Notes and References, Including Acts of Session of 1870-’71 Page 125, Image 794 (Vol. 2, 1873) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

| |

Offences Against Public Policy and Economy. § 4864. Any person who sells, loans, or gives, to any minor a pistol, bowie-knife, dirk, Arkansas tooth-pick, hunter’s knife, or like dangerous weapon, except a gun for hunting or weapon for defens...

Offences Against Public Policy and Economy. § 4864. Any person who sells, loans, or gives, to any minor a pistol, bowie-knife, dirk, Arkansas tooth-pick, hunter’s knife, or like dangerous weapon, except a gun for hunting or weapon for defense in traveling, is guilty of a misdemeanor, and shall be fined not less than twenty-five dollars, and be imprisoned in the county jail at the discretion of the court.

Read More

1855-1856 Tenn. Pub. Acts 34, An Act to Amend and Reduce into One, the Acts Relating to the Charter of the Town of Clarkeville, ch. 32, § 2, pt. 20.

| |

To provide for the prevention and extinguishment of fires; to organize, establish and equip fire companies, hose companies, and hook and ladder companies; to regulate, restrain or prohibit the erection of wooden or combustible buildings in any part of ...

To provide for the prevention and extinguishment of fires; to organize, establish and equip fire companies, hose companies, and hook and ladder companies; to regulate, restrain or prohibit the erection of wooden or combustible buildings in any part of the city; to regulate and to prevent the carrying on of manufactories dangerous in causing or producing fires; to regulate the storage of gun powder, tar, pitch, rosin, saltpetre [sic], gun cotton and all other combustible or explosive material[.]

Read More

Seymour Dwight Thompson, A Compilation of the Statute Laws of the State of Tennessee, of a General and Permanent Nature, Compiled on the Basis of the Code of Tennessee, With Notes and References, Including Acts of Session of 1870-’71 Page 52, Image 721 (Vol. 2, 1873) available at the The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

| |

Of Offences Against the Person, [Assault and Battery and Attempt to Commit Crime,] § 4628. If any person assaults and beats another with a cowhide, stick, or whip, having a the time in his possession a pistol or other deadly weapon, with intent to...

Of Offences Against the Person, [Assault and Battery and Attempt to Commit Crime,] § 4628. If any person assaults and beats another with a cowhide, stick, or whip, having a the time in his possession a pistol or other deadly weapon, with intent to intimidate the person assaulted, and prevent him from defending himself, he shall, on conviction, be imprisoned in the penitentiary not less than two nor more than ten years.

Read More

John M. Lea, The Revised Laws of the City of Nashville, with the Various Acts of Incorporation and Laws Applicable to the Town and City of Nashville, and a List of the Different Boards of Mayor and Aldermen, and Other Officers of Said City from the Year 1806 to 1850, Inclusive Page 68, Image 69 (1850) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

| |

[An Act to Provide for the Prevention and Extinguishment of Fires within the City of Nashville,]§ 11. Be it enacted, That if any person or persons shall fire any gun or pistol, cast, throw, or fire any squib, rocket, cracker, or other combustible ...

[An Act to Provide for the Prevention and Extinguishment of Fires within the City of Nashville,]§ 11. Be it enacted, That if any person or persons shall fire any gun or pistol, cast, throw, or fire any squib, rocket, cracker, or other combustible fire-works within the limits of the corporation, every such person, for every such offence, shall forfeit and pay the sum of five dollars; and if a slave, he, she or they shall receive not less than five, nor more than twenty lashes, any person or persons shall vend, manufacture, give away, deal in or have in his possession any squib, rocket, cracker, powder, or other combustible fire-works within the limits of the corporation of Nashville for the purpose of disposing of the same to minors or slaves, every such person, for every such offence, shall forfeit and pay the sum of twenty dollars.

Read More

John M. Lea, The Revised Laws of the City of Nashville, with the Various Acts of Incorporation and Laws Applicable to the Town and City of Nashville, and a List of the Different Boards of Mayor and Aldermen, and Other Officers of Said City from the Year 1806 to 1850, Inclusive Page 49, Image 50 (1850) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

| |

[An Act to Reduce the Several Acts Incorporating the Town of Nashville in one act, and to Amend the Same, § 6. The Mayor and Aldermen shall have power, by ordinance within the city – ]25th. To regulate the storage of gun-powder, tar, pitch, ...

[An Act to Reduce the Several Acts Incorporating the Town of Nashville in one act, and to Amend the Same, § 6. The Mayor and Aldermen shall have power, by ordinance within the city – ]25th. To regulate the storage of gun-powder, tar, pitch, rosin, salt-petre, gun-cotton, and all other combustible material, and the use of lights, candles and stove-pipes in all stables, shops, and other places.

Read More

1837-1838 Tenn. Pub. Acts 201, An Act to Suppress the Sale and Use of Bowie Knives and Arkansas Tooth Picks in the State, ch. 137, § 4.

| |

That if any person carrying any knife or weapon known as a Bowie knife, Arkansas tooth pick, or any knife or weapon that shall in form, shape or size resemble a Bowie knife, on a sudden rencounter [sic], shall cut or stab another person with such knife...

That if any person carrying any knife or weapon known as a Bowie knife, Arkansas tooth pick, or any knife or weapon that shall in form, shape or size resemble a Bowie knife, on a sudden rencounter [sic], shall cut or stab another person with such knife or weapon, whether death ensues or not, such person so stabbing or cutting shall be guilty of a felony, and upon conviction thereof shall be confined in the jail and penitentiary house of this state, for a period of time not less than three years, nor more than fifteen years.

Read More

1837-1838 Tenn. Pub. Acts 200, An Act to Suppress the Sale and Use of Bowie Knives and Arkansas Tooth Picks in this State, ch. 137, § 1.

| |

That if any merchant, . . . shall sell, or offer to sell . . . any Bowie knife or knives, or Arkansas tooth picks . . . such merchant shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof upon indictment or presentment, shall be fined in a...

That if any merchant, . . . shall sell, or offer to sell . . . any Bowie knife or knives, or Arkansas tooth picks . . . such merchant shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof upon indictment or presentment, shall be fined in a sum not less than one hundred dollars, nor more than five hundred dollars, and shall be imprisoned in the county jail for a period not less than one month nor more than six months.

Read More

1837-38 Tenn. Pub. Acts 200-01, An Act to Suppress the Sale and Use of Bowie Knives and Arkansas Tooth Picks in this State, ch 137, § 2.

| |

That if any person shall wear any Bowie knife, Arkansas tooth pick, or other knife or weapon that shall in form, shape or size resemble a Bowie knife or Arkansas toothpick under his clothes, or keep the same concealed about his person, such person shal...

That if any person shall wear any Bowie knife, Arkansas tooth pick, or other knife or weapon that shall in form, shape or size resemble a Bowie knife or Arkansas toothpick under his clothes, or keep the same concealed about his person, such person shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof shall be fined in a sum not less than two hundred dollars, nor more than five hundred dollars, and shall be imprisoned in the county jail not less than three months and not more than six months.

Read More

Robert Looney Caruthers, A Compilation of the Statutes of Tennessee, of a General and Permanent Nature, from the Commencement of the Government to the Present time: With References to Judicial Decisions, in Notes, to Which is Appended a New Collection of Forms Page 325, Image 330 (1836) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

| |

Felonies, § 56. If any person within this state shall fight a duel, or shall deliberately and maliciously challenge, by word or writing, any other person, to fight with sword, pistol, or other deadly weapon, or shall deliberately and maliciously i...

Felonies, § 56. If any person within this state shall fight a duel, or shall deliberately and maliciously challenge, by word or writing, any other person, to fight with sword, pistol, or other deadly weapon, or shall deliberately and maliciously invite another verbally, or by writing, to meet him in this state, or elsewhere, with a view or intent to challenge or fight; or if any person so challenged, shall deliberately and maliciously accept the said challenge, in either case, such person so deliberately and maliciously giving or receiving, or sending any such challenge, and being convicted thereof, shall be sentenced to imprisonment, at hard labor in the penitentiary, for a term not less than three nor more than ten years: Provided always, that no person who shall be verbally challenged, shall be a competent witness to prove the fact of such verbal challenge, against any person who may be indicted for the same.

Read More