Imagine you're an Army captain tasked with determining the best service pistol to issue to your men. How would you go about making that decision? If your immediate and enthusiastic answer was "prop up corpses and go to town on history's weirdest shooting gallery," then you are fucked in the head. And your name is Luis LaGarde.
"Well, you guys threw a shit-fit when I wanted to use homeless people!"
In 1899, LaGarde and Colonel John T. Thompson (who would later go on to invent the Thompson submachine gun made famous by Al Capone and the like), hung an unspecified number of cadavers from the ceiling and took turns shooting them with .38 and .45 caliber revolvers. Dozens of rounds were fired into each corpse and, based entirely on how much each shot made the body swing, LaGarde and Thompson "calculated" the relative stopping power of the various gun models. Their findings influenced military policies, specifically those dictating that service pistols should be of no less than .45 caliber. Such experiments were finally abandoned completely in the 1920s, when they were condemned for being "scientifically unsound." That's science speak for "a sane person finally stumbled into the House of the Dead and screamed, 'What in the actual fuck are you doing?!'"