Mobster shoot-outs by cartoon icons like Dick Tracy were very popular during the Great Depression and made every boy long for a gun of their own. Well-known toy cap gun producers of this era included Daisy, Nichols, Halco, Esquire and Stevens and of course the larger toy companies like Louis Marx and Hubley.
The stories of American heroics during WW II, together with populair Western films, helped glorifying guns and their smaller toy replicas. Cap guns became quickly associated with Wild West cowboy characters as Buck Jones, Roy Rogers, Hopalong Cassidy and Gene Autry.
Especially in the 1950s, due to an endless stream of marketing and merchandising Western-themed television shows, put toy cap guns in the hands of millions of kids. Now you could own your own toy gun, emblazoned with the name of your favorite character: Bonanza, Johnny West, The Rifleman, The Lone Ranger, Maverick, Bat Masterson or Gunsmoke.