When the .32 Magnum first arrived, I didn’t take it seriously. My friend Joe Penner acquired one of the first 9-1/2” Ruger Single-Sixes available. We loaded up some JHPs and searched for suitable targets. I found some well out of date cans of split pea soup and since I don't like the stuff anyhow, I figured it would be great for experimenting. Putting a jacketed hollow point through the first can set at 25 yards changed my mind about the little Mighty Mouse Magnum. The can of split pea split — sending green soup all over us and my red Bronco. This cartridge was no toy!

The first factory loads from Federal were very mild as the .32 Magnum arrived in Harrington & Richardson revolvers. (That’s why it is officially known as the .32 H&R Magnum.) The old H&Rs were not especially strong, but handloads for use in the Ruger Single-Six could be loaded much hotter.