It can be confusing trying to figure out who owns who in the world of gun companies. It’s a little sad, but most of the great names in US guns are no longer independently owned. In fact, it can be confusing trying to figure out who owns who. But that puzzle is for another day. Today and tomorrow, we are looking at who makes guns on US soil and what state those guns are made in. We won’t be able to cover all US gun manufacturers, but we will look at some of the greats.
A lot of the legendary guns we enjoy today are made in countries around the world. Germany, Italy, Israel, and many other countries make some legendary guns. But no matter how awesome they are, there is something special about owning a gun made in the United States. Even when the parent company is not a US company, I will pay a little more for it when it’s made on US soil by Americans.
O.F Mossberg & Sons: Texas
Just about every American who owns or has ever owned a shotgun owns a Mossberg. If not, they are familiar with the famous pump-action model 500. Mossberg is now the oldest family-owned firearms company in the US. Founded in 1919 by Oscar Frederick Mossberg, the company is now more than a century old. It is still owned by the Mossberg family with the current CEO Iver Mossberg, the great-grandson of Oscar F Mossberg. Mossberg’s headquarters is in North Haven, but almost all their manufacturing is now done in Eagle Pass, Texas.
Mossberg is known for their shotguns and rifles, so it surprises most people to learn that Mossberg’s first gun wasn’t either. Instead, it was a .22 caliber pistol named the Brownie. In recent years, Mossberg has begun making pistols, taking them back to where they started in the beginning—an American gun, for the American people.
Sturm, Ruger and CO: New Hampshire, Arizona, Connecticut
Ruger is an American household name when it comes to guns. They are most well-known for their .22 caliber line of pistols and of course the Ruger 10-22 rifle. In recent years, their line of LCP and LCR handguns has landed them a place in the CCW market. Their most recent version of the LCP is the LCP Max, a .380 compact pistol that has a magazine capacity of 10 + 1 rounds. One thing that makes Ruger stand out, because it is one of the last big-name gun manufacturers, is that it is still independently operating today.
Sturm, Ruger & Co was founded in 1949 when Alexander Sturm invested $50,000 with William B. Ruger to start the company. Sturm died just a few years later, but Ruger continued and kept the Sturm name alive. Ruger Sr. retired in 2000 and his son, William B. Ruger Jr., took over as CEO until his retirement in 2006. The company has manufactured more than 20 million guns and has plants in New Hampshire and Arizona. The corporate office is located in Connecticut. They are truly a great American gun company.
Springfield Armory: Illinois
Firearms manufacturer Springfield Armory is not a new name. In fact, it was a name given to a government manufacturing plant in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1794. It produced a ton of weapons but most notably the M1 carbine during WWII. It was shut down in 1968. So, who is making guns under the name Springfield Armory today? A man by the name of Bob Reese and his family started a firearms manufacturing company in 1974. They used the name Springfield Armory as a tribute to the original government plant and started producing the same type of guns that were made in the original factory.
While the name is symbolic of the plant in Massachusetts, Springfield Armory is headquartered in Geneseo, Illinois. They produce classic weapons like the M1A1 and 1911, but they have made their own way in the gun world as well. The XD, and Hellcat pistols along with the Saint AR-15 line of rifles have placed them firmly on the map. The company continues to produce both classic and modern weapons with no signs of slowing down.
Sig Sauer: New Hampshire
Like a lot of other gun companies, Sig Sauer wasn’t originally a gun company. It was first started in Switzerland in 1853 as a Wagon factory. They soon submitted a prototype of a rifle for the Swiss Army. They won the award, and the wagon company eventually became the Sig Arms Company, later named changed to Sig Sauer. The Swiss company started moving operations to the US in the 1980s. Today they’re headquartered in New Hampshire and produce a long line of respected weapons for citizens, police, and militaries.
One of the most notable mentions for Sig Sauer today is the M17. Based on the P320, it won the US Military contract to become the standard issue sidearm in 2017. They now offer a full line of handguns, rifles, and compact pistol caliber carbines (PCC) like the MPX line of weapons. Sig may not have started out as an American gun maker, but they have become one of the major gun manufacturers in the US today.
There are a lot of companies out there making firearms. Some are on the cheap side, and some are on the high end of the price tag. There are some great guns made in other parts of the world, but it’s nice to know which ones are made in America. In section two, we will continue to look at some of the major gun manufacturers who produce firearms in the US. Later, I will start tackling some of the smaller gun companies that could be up and coming rock-stars in the firearms industry.