'Duke' headstamp

I know absolutely nothing about commercial ammunition however I’ve just acquired a Winchester-Western .32-40 rifle cartridge with a history, if true, that has aroused even my interest.
Apparently the late John Wayne occaisionly used live ammunition on some of his film sets and cartridges headstamped ‘DUKE’ were specially made for him for this purpose. Can anybody confirm this?

Morning Jim,

Is the case nickel ? if so I think the rd could be one of the John Wayne commemorative rds. I think AuctionArms has some on at the moment.

auctionarms.com/search/displ … um=8392610


I have a nickel plated 38-55 case that is headstamped OJW instead of “duke” but according to me it is a John Wayne commemorative one too


Yes, it’s a nickel case. Bit disappointing but thank you both!

These are part of a commemorative series of cartridges put out by Winchester, along with commemorative lever action rifles. The cartridges all had nickel cases, special headstamps, and special boxes. The box for the Duke cartridges has a picture of John Wayne on the front. The “OFW” stands for Oliver F. Winchester, and the box has his picture on it. I do not collect these, but perhaps someone who does can post box pics. There were many cartridges in this series, most in caliber .30-30, such as the Bicentennial, Antlered Game, Wells Fargo, Legendary Lawmen, Alberta Diamond Jubilee and several others…Randy


I believe Winchester has made at least two different runs of the John Wayne Limited Edition cartridges. One was 20 or so years ago and the latest was just a year or so ago.

The latest edition is still available for retail sale. See the link below:

midwayusa.com/eproductpage.e … mid=293784

The photos are not much good, but the calibers are listed and the explanation is interesting.


Here’s the older .32-40 box.

Here’s the newer 2007 box commemorating the 100th year of the birth of John Wayne.

There are three boxes this year, the .30-30 above, plus ones in .45 Colt and .44-40 Winchester. The boxes are all identical, with this historical note on the back.

Here’s the .45 Colt box. The .44-40 is the harder one to get. Apparently, they were not well-packed by Winchester, and about 40 percent of them are damaged, so the price is now up to about $89 per box, if you can find them.

Sorry…OFW not OJW…you’re right!!!
It wouldn’t be a J. Wayne commemorative round but it would be commemorative for something else due the unusual headstamp…
Maybe I’m wrong but there aren’t too many of this cartridges on the Italian market I think…