The Daily Register - Harrisburg, IL
  • Concealed carry could mean rise in So. Il. Holster Co.

  • Custom made holsters for handguns are a specialty of James Russell's store in Harrisburg.
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  • Custom made holsters for handguns are a specialty of James Russell's store.
    The holsters are all made of ballistic nylon and manufactured in St. Louis.
    Russell can get you a custom made holster in only two days.
    If Illinois passes a concealed carry law, So. Il. Holster Co. should experience an upward bump in sales.
    The store is located at 500 W. Poplar St., Harrisburg and has been struggling with the drop in business due to decreased traffic since the state Route 13 bypass was opened.
    "It was like skeletons everywhere when the bypass first opened but things are picking back up now," said James Russell, owner and sole employee at the store.
    In business for only one and a half years, Russell is already making a name for himself among Southern Illinois gun owners. He has dealers offering his products all around the southern portion of the state.
    "I hope to build up the business with lots of local dealers," said Russell. "I would like to have a few employees here in the store."
    Russell believes key to his business are versatility and low prices.
    "We don't make leather holsters, only ballistic nylon. My turnaround time on a custom job is fantastic. I keep a diverse supply of holsters here in the store but I can fit any pistol that you bring me. I keep my prices low by having low overheard. So I have a fantastic product and fantastic customer service."
    Russell lives on the premises with his dog. When he walks the dog he sometimes finds customers waiting for him when he returns to the store.
    Russell offers shoulder hoisters, ankle holsters and hip holsters. He has some of each in stock.
    His holsters are only part of his inventory. He sells gun cases as well. The cases come in pink, camo and black. There is one model that is inscribed with the words, "My First Gun."
    Collectibles make up the remainder of his business. He has a little of everything including a Jimmy Carter campaign button.
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