It has been awhile since I wrote anything for the Thompson Collector Newsletter. So much to say and so little time to write. With that in mind, let me have a few minutes of your time.

We have now completed our TENTH annual meeting. Those of you who saw last month's newsletter, and did not attend the meeting, saw only a portion of what you missed by seeing some pictures. You missed viewing some very good displays in person, meeting some old friends, and finding new friends. As with all of our annual meetings we had folks there who had not attended before and with them came Thompsons and other items not previously seen. For me personally, I got to meet people I had only spoken with on the telephone or seen their names in print in our newsletter and other publications. I also got to put my hands on the Bibb City, Georgia Thompson. In 1988 when I began to think seriously about owning a Colt Thompson that was the first gun I sought. In the near future I hope to put together an article for the newsletter about this gun with the help of it's current owner and Mr. David Abney, the former Chief of Police in Bibb City. David is an old friend and a firearms collector. I will never forget how high David came out of his chair when I asked where Bibb City's Thompson was located. I have been on this soap box before but I can not stress to each of you what you miss by not attending the annual meeting. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO HAVE A LARGE COLLECTION OR EVEN ONE GUN - ALL YOU NEED IS YOUR INTEREST. I'll get off my box for now.

Each year since we became a NRA affiliate club, we have held a Board of Directors meeting at our annual meeting. Any member may attend this meeting and join in any discussion. With these thoughts in mind I want to notify you that we raised our annual dues to $30.00. This was effective with any renewals or new members as of 08-17-01. I would also like to explain why this was done. (I would also like to add that I made the motion for this increase without paying my renewal first. I never told any of you I was smart.) We have been operating a long time out of the kindness of "others", which should stop as a few people should not carry the funding of an organization that numbers over TWO HUNDRED-FIFTY (250) MEMBERS. We were also in the hole (the red) after doing the show at Kansas City. We did hold an auction at our annual meeting on Friday night and raised $1447.50 toward new projects. If you have not attended one of our annual meetings and witnessed one of these auctions first hand, you have missed some wonderful entertainment in addition to an opportunity to bid on some neat items. Some of you will question this increase after we so recently raised the dues from $15 to $20. That increase was to fund our liability insurance for the shoots we hold. That had to be done to protect all of us and our pockets. The current increase ($20 up to $30) will help to build a treasury toward future public displays (NRA, OGCA, etc.) If you have never manned (Womaned? We are an equal opportunity organization.) one of these displays and enjoyed the conversations with total strangers and the pure awe in their eyes at seeing these pieces of history, you have again missed another truly rewarding experience.