Green’s Dictionary of Slang

shooter n.1

1. (UK/US Und.) a gun, a revolver.

[US]W.C. Hall ‘Mike Hooter’s Fight with the ‘Bar’’ Spirit of the Times 10 Nov. (N.Y.) 452: One Sunday morning, I took ‘Brown Betsy,’ my old two shooter, and all the dogs, and off I sot for the cane brake in the hollow.
[US]W.C. Hall ‘Mike Hooter’s Bar Story’ Spirit of the Times 26 Jan. (N.Y.) 581: He tuk hold er the shooter.
[US]Nat. Police Gaz. (NY) 5 Oct. n.p.: Both carry shooters, loaded and cocked.
[UK]W. Black Green Pastures and Piccadilly Ch. xiii: Then Jack drew his shooter out and shot Billy Bill through the head [OED].
[US]Eve. Chronicle (Virginia City) 10 June in M. Lewis Mining Frontier (1967) 203: I oiled up my shooter.
[US]C.A. Siringo Texas Cow Boy (1950) 33: They [...] asked me how much I would take for my ‘shooter?’.
[UK]Bird o’ Freedom 15 Jan. 7/1: You should have seen that Johnnie whipping out his shooter when the fight was first declared off.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘Shooting the Moon’ in Roderick (1972) 149: I kept the shooter, and if he hadn’t sent it [i.e. money] I’d have been the late John Mitchell long ago.
[UK]Marvel XIV:357 13: Draw your shooter, mate. I can’t get at mine.
[UK]Boys Of The Empire 23 Apr. 37: I observe ye ain’t armed with the same kind and size o’ shooters.
[US]‘A-No. 1’ From Coast to Coast with Jack London 57: He had personally passed through a number of holdups by hoboes who [...] had relieved him of his six-shooters.
[UK]‘Doss Chiderdoss’ ‘Is Acting an Art’ Sporting Times 18 Dec. 1/3: When I grab my six-shooter, and rescue a tart, / Or dive off a cliff into the bay, / You may call it a stunt, but I tell you it’s art.
[UK]E. Blair in College Days (Eton) 4 1 Apr. in Complete Works X (1998) 65: We don’t let croaksters vamoose like that in Arizona. I waved my shooter and emptied two rounds of dope into the galley-pullers.
[Aus]A. Russell Gone Nomad 56: Every one carried a ‘shooter’ in his pocket.
[US]C.S. Montanye ‘Don’t Meddle with Murder’ in Thrilling Detective May [Internet] The kind of shooter they use for paper targets.
[UK]B. Hill Boss of Britain’s Underworld 11: We had chivs, choppers, chains, razors, knives, hammers, iron bars and coshes. But we knew the Blacks had shooters.
[UK]F. Norman Guntz 56: There are posh shops, smart bars and theatres, there are brasses, and the law carry shooters.
[UK]G.F. Newman Sir, You Bastard 123: Why did you pull the shooter.
[UK]D. Powis Signs of Crime 200: Shooter Commonest expression for a firearm, usually but not exclusively a pistol.
[UK]A. Payne ‘Get Daley!’ Minder [TV script] 8: I flashed the shooter at him and the silly old sod fainted.
[UK](con. 1950s–60s) in G. Tremlett Little Legs 58: The sheriff had his shooter.
[UK]Guardian Guide 12–18 June 8: He was digging up shooters to help Lindsey ‘deal with’ the Finnegans.
[UK]N. ‘Razor’ Smith Raiders 253: A melt like Geordie Keith was not going to be trusted with a shooter.
[UK]K. Richards Life 162: Quite a few of the guys we were traveling with were carrying shooters.

2. (gambling) the player currently throwing the dice in a game of craps.

[US] National Police Gazette 27 Dec. 6/2: Everybody can be with the shooter by placing their money in a circle marked ‘Come Bets.’.
[US](con. 1973) ‘Paul Cain’ Fast One (1936) 114: Five . . . Seven, out. Next man. Who likes this lucky shooter?
[US](con. 1920s) ‘Harry Grey’ Hoods (1953) 204: I watched him making small bets against the shooter.
[US]H. Simmons Corner Boy 139: The shooter winked [...] He threw the dice.
[US]C. Himes Rage in Harlem (1969) 23: The shooters were jammed about the table beneath a glare of light.
[US]C. Himes Blind Man with a Pistol (1971) 176: Nine’s the point. Take ’em, Mister Shooter, and see what you can do.
[US]Simon & Burns Corner (1998) 106: They jump into the action like new shooters at a crap table.
[US]Simon & Burns ‘The Target’ Wire ep. 1 [TV script] He fade a few shooters. Played out till the pot's deep.

3. one who fires a weapon, an assassin.

[US]R. Chandler Lady in the Lake (1952) 235: I been a shooter more years than you been alive, son.
[US]E. Torres Carlito’s Way 147: He [...] put the shooter through a plate-glass window.
[US]N. Pileggi Wiseguy (2001) 30: Young shooters such as Jimmy Burke, Anthony Stabile.
[UK]J. Cameron Vinnie Got Blown Away 26: Mannie dials 999 and asks for shooters.
[UK]C. Newland Scholar 283: The best thing you could do is push for bail in exchange for the shooter in that robbery.
[US]W. Shaw Westsiders 116: He was never a shooter, but he watched other people use guns.
[US]R. Price Lush Life 41: Matty had made that mistake [...] being too aggressive with a likely shooter .
[US]Codella and Bennett Alphaville (2011) 21: The hit had gone completely haywire. The shooters missed with their bullets.
F. Stuart ‘Dispatches from the Rap Wars’ in chicagomag.com [Internet] Each rapper in the gang has one or two ‘shooters.’ These are the members who make good on the threats the rappers dish out in their lyrics and on social media. And, yes, that means shooting—and sometimes killing—people.

4. a press photographer.

[US]C. Hiaasen Star Island (2011) 10: Did you see any other shooter soutside? [...] Photographers.

In derivatives