The top gun manufacturers stand out from the crowd for their innovation, engineering, and design of high-quality firearms. But only a few have been doing it for longer than the rest. Want to know which gun manufacturers are the original 3 in the United States?

Out of the hundreds of gun makers in the world, these 3 manufacturers dominate gun cabinets and auction houses across the country. Since the foundation of the Country, these manufacturers have defined the American firearms industry, and continue to do so to this day.   

Top 3 Original Gun Manufacturers in the US

The top 3 original gun manufacturers in the United States produce high-quality firearms that are easy to use, accurate, reliable, and designed for function-over-fashion. But, over the years, these are the guns that have come to feature the highest aesthetic quality, as well. 

These 3 American gun manufacturers have been defining the industry and shaping history since the early 19th century:    

Smith and Wesson

Smith and Wesson has gone back and forth with Ruger for years, as the top producing firearms manufacturer in the United States. In recent years the title goes to Ruger, but Smith and Wesson remain a mammoth in the industry. Smith and Wesson sells over 1 million firearms every year, with 90% sold within the United States. 

Smith and Wesson have three headquarters, in Massachusetts, Maine, and Connecticut. Despite being an industry leader – since 2016, the Trump administration’s trade war with China has caused a significant drop in the company’s stock value. And, in March 2018, the gun manufacturers parent company, American Outdoor Brand Corp. (AOBC), plummeted on the exchange.

Since then the value has stabilized, and Smith and Wesson remains one of the largest producers of guns in the world. Smith and Wesson is known for making high-quality handguns and modern sporting rifles, like the AR-15. In 2018 Over 60% of the company’s sales were for pistols and revolvers.

Despite recent hardships for the company, Smith and Wesson has a history as old as the United States. Horace Smith and Daniel B. Wesson founded the Smith and Wesson Company in Connecticut, in 1852. Over the next few decades, these two men left more of a mark on the firearms industry than nearly anyone else. 

Their early days in competition with Colt to produce a superior revolver helped spur a revolution in firearms manufacturing. Today, their legacy of influence is still seen in gun brands like Winchester, Springfield, and Colt.    

Remington Arms Company

Remington Arms Company is a top gun manufacturer with an instrumental role in the military history of the 20th century. 

In WWI, the M1917 Enfield Rifle became standard issue for United States soldiers on the Western front. And, the Remington Springfield Bolt-action Rifle became infamous across Europe during the Allied invasion of WWII. By the early 1960’s, Remington became known as a top sniper rifle manufacturer for the United States military. 

The Model 700 is still widely used by the US Armed Forces, to this day.

Remington Outdoor was founded in 2007 as a parent company to Remington Arms, as well as other of its subsidiary gun brands. Remington Outdoor is parent to several reputable gun brands, including Remington, Bushmaster, Stormlake – and more.

Remington Arms Company, the most profitable subsidiary of Remington Outdoor, produces guns for the military, self-defense, law enforcement, sport-shooting, and hunting. Founded in 1816, Remington holds the title of the oldest gun manufacturers in the United States. 

Colt (Colt Defense)

Colt is the original top gun manufacturers in the United States, dating back to the early 19th-century wild-west. Colt Defense manufactures guns for the military, law enforcement, and civilian use. In the 19th century, the Colt Single Action Army revolver became well-known as “The Peacemaker” on the frontier.  

Colt is a foundational gun manufacturer in the United States, and continues the tradition to this day. For many early years, the main Colt headquarters was located in West Hartford, Connecticut, in the Coltsville Factory. Today, the National Park Service is preserving the factory as a national park. 

Colts’ production history is immortalized by cultural symbolism. In Hollywood, Colt firearms have taken on a life of their own. From the iconic western Colt Python 6-shooter, to the military issue M4 Carbine assault rifle – almost every western flick and war movie features Colt firearms.    

Final Thoughts

Smith and Wesson, Colt, and Remington are the top 3 original gun manufacturers in the United States. They continue to produce firearms that you can be proud to collect, shoot, and pass on to your heirs. American engineering shines through the production history of Remington, Colt, and Smith and Wesson. 

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