This project began as a master's thesis at the University of Texas in 1964. Over the next four years, the uthor was able to track down and visit, interview, or correspond with many of the individuals involved in the development of the Thompson Submachine Gun. He was especially fortunate to track down Oscan Payne, who designed the gun; Theodore Eickhoff, his supervisor; and George Goll, who remained with the Auto-Ordnance Corporation through World War II. These were the first three men hired by General John Thompson when he formed the Auto-Ordnance Corporate in 1916, and the author brought the group together some fifity years later.
The thesis evolved into the first "biographical history" of General Thompson and the submachine gun, receiving favorable reviews. Since then, any number of books and articles have retold the Thompson story, but the only one that greatly expands on this edition, especially in manufacturing details, is The Ultimate Thompson book, published in 2009 by Tracie Hill, founder of The American Thompson Association. This newly formatted second edition of The Gun That Made the Twenties Roar, published one hundred years after the founding of the Auto-Ordnance Corporation includes an additional chapter that updates the original book published in 1969. 220pp.