Remington Arms Co. Company History
Remington Arms Company History of the Firearms Business
|1816 – Legend has it that a young Eliphalet Remington II believed he could build a better gun than he could buy, and he set out to craft such a gun on his father’s forge located at Ilion Gulch, New York. In the autumn of 1816, Eliphalet entered a shooting match with his new flintlock rifle, and while he only finished second, his handmade rifle was a success. Orders for new Remington-made rifles and barrels began to accumulate from the many other contestants, and before Eliphalet left the shooting field, he was in the gun business.|
1828 – Remington moved its operations from Ilion Gulch to a site close to the newly constructed Erie Canal. This site, in Ilion, New York, is part of the property on which the Ilion firearms plant sits today.
1860 – Marcellus Hartley founded the Schuyler, Hartley & Graham Sporting Goods Company, which would later become one of the largest sporting goods companies in the world.
1865 – The partnership of E. Remington & Sons was incorporated as a stock company. Over the years, the partnership and the succeeding corporation developed the first hammerless solid breech repeating shotgun, the first hammerless autoloading shotgun, the first successful high-power slide action repeating rifle, and the first lock breach autoloading rifle. In 1865-66, Remington produced the state-of-the-art Rolling Block Rifle.
1867 – In an effort to diversify their holdings, Schuyler, Hartley & Graham purchased two small New England cartridge companies. These companies were later closed, and the equipment moved to a new site in Bridgeport, Connecticut. On August 9, 1867, the Union Metallic Cartridge Company was incorporated. It was particularly noted for its development of metallic cartridges. It and its successor company subsequently developed the first paper shotshells successfully manufactured in the United States, the first primer adapted to smokeless powder; the first battery cup for best quality paper shotshells; the first cartridges for automatic pistols; the first standard high-power smokeless cartridges for big game autoloading rifles; the first .410 bore gauge shotshell in the United States; the first nickeled primer; the first oil-proof automatic pistol cartridges; and the first completely wetproof loaded shells, including top wad, crimp and body.
1873 – E. Remington & Sons embarked on a new venture, and in September of 1873, the first Remington typewriters were produced.
1886 – Remington sells the typewriter business. This business would later become Remington Rand, then Sperry Rand.
1888 – In March 1888, E. Remington & Sons was acquired by Marcellus Hartley and partners. E. Remington & Sons was reorganized, and the new company was named the Remington Arms Company. In later years, in order to better utilize the potential of the Remington Plant, the company would produce sewing machines and cash registers.
1912 – The Union Metallic Cartridge Company of Bridgeport and Remington Arms Company were combined into one company and became Remington U.M.C.
1915 – Construction started on an expansion of the Ilion facilities, and by the spring of 1916, the new Ilion plant was in full operation. The Ilion plant constructed during this time is essentially the same plant that exists today.
1920 – Remington Arms Company was incorporated in Delaware.
In order to better utilize the excess manufacturing capacity created during World War I, Remington began to branch into new fields, including the cutlery business (pocket and hunting knives), household utensils, and cash registers.
1926 – Remington began distributing and selling decorative patches bearing the Remington logo. This eventually led to Remington’s clothing and accessory business.
1931 – Remington sold the cash register business to the National Cash Register Company.
1933 – As a result of financial pressures brought on by The Great Depression, Remington’s management offered a controlling interest in the company to E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co., Inc. (DuPont). On May 24, DuPont purchased a 60% share of the company.
In August, Remington acquired the Chamberlain Trap & Target Company which included a plant in Findlay, Ohio. Its ‘Miracle Trap’ became a standard in the industry and was used exclusively at the 1934 Grand American Handicap – the premier classic trapshooting event.
1934 – On May 15, 1934 Remington purchased the Peters Cartridge Company. The Peters Cartridge Company operated an ammunition facility located in Kings Mill, Ohio.
On June 1, 1934 the assets and business related to the sale and manufacture of the Parker shotgun were purchased from the Charles Parker Company. The Parker Shotgun Company operated a facility in Meriden, Connecticut. This operation was later closed and the Parker shotgun production moved to the Ilion plant.
1936 – Early in 1936 Remington and Imperial Chemical Industries, Ltd. joined in the organization of Companhia Brasileira de Cartuchos SA for the purpose of acquiring the assets and business of Fabrica Nacional de Cartuchos e Municoes. The latter company had been manufacturing sporting ammunition since 1927 in its plant located in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Remington granted the new company the right to use its trademark and technical information in Brazil. Remington maintained a 49.99% interest in Companhia Brasileira.
1940 – Several years before World War II, the government asked Remington to collaborate on a plan for the expansion of ammunition production. The plan called for a number of new plants to be constructed by the government and to be contractor operated. The program was activated in the summer of 1940 when Remington was asked to recommend plant sites. With the aid of DuPont, a study was made covering 51 sites, and in September, Remington was asked to undertake the establishment and operation of the first ordinance plant in Lake City, and then a second plant in Denver a few weeks later. In the spring of 1941, a third plant in Salt Lake City, Utah was assigned to Remington, and later a fourth, Kings Mills, and in the spring of 1942, a fifth, Lowell.
These plants belonged to the government; however, they were operated by Remington under fixed-fee contracts, whereby Remington was responsible for assuring the adequacy of a capacity through construction advice with respect to design engineering and construction, the procurement of equipment, training of personnel, and operation of the plants.
1946 – In November, 1946, Remington closed the Remington Arms Union Metallic Cartridge Company, Ltd., a wholly-owned English subsidiary. This subsidiary operated a shotshell loading plant at Brimsdown, England. Operations consisted of loading empty paper shotshells, imported from the parent company, with powder and other components. This company also handled importation of rimfire and centerfire ammunition and sporting firearms from the U.S.
1950 – Remington and Crucible Steel Company of America form Rem-Cru Titanium, Inc., a joint venture. Rem-Cru operated a plant in Midland, Pennsylvania for the purpose of melting, alloying, fabricating, and selling titanium and its alloys. Remington later transferred its 80% share of Rem-Cru to Crucible Steel in exchange for 150,000 shares of Crucible common stock.
In January, 1950 Remington announced its new Model 870 “Wingmaster” shotgun, which has become the largest selling pump action shotgun in the world.
1956 – To complement its own powder-activated tool business, Remington acquired the Mall Tool Company for $9.8 million. This company operated plants in Chicago and Park Forest, Illinois and in Toronto, Ontario. Mall products included complete lines of portable electric, gasoline, and pneumatic-powered tools and flexible shaft equipment. Mall Tool Company was dissolved in 1958, and its activities integrated with Remington, which included the powder-activated tool business which had been previously developed in Bridgeport. The Canadian subsidiary name was changed to Remington Arms of Canada, Ltd. and its product line expanded to include firearms and other Remington products.
Remington purchased the commercial farm and wildlife refuge of the late Glenn L. Martin, consisting of 2,970 acres of property near Chestertown, Maryland. The property was named Remington Farms. Remington Farms has changed over the years through the addition of additional acreage and the construction of guest accommodations. While Remington Farms is utilized for hunting and conference activities, its primary mission continues to be to demonstrate wildlife restoration and conservation techniques.
1960 – Remington introduces plastic body shotshells.
1961 – A review of economic potential of foreign markets for Remington products resulted in investment by Remington in two new affiliates during 1961, one in Germany and the other in Mexico.
1962 – The new Model 700 bolt-action rifle was announced and soon became the most popular bolt-action rifle in the market.
1963 – The Model 1100 autoloading shotgun was introduced. This gun was the result of a three-year development program.
As part of a program aimed towards diversification outside of traditional product lines, Remington acquired a 55% interest in Brewer Pharmical Engineering Corp. located in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania. Remington’s investment in Brewer amounted to $1.4 million. Brewer manufactures and distributes an electro-mechanical system for physical control, invoicing, and inventory control of drugs in hospitals.
1964 – Remington Arms International GmbH, formed in 1961 to distribute chain saws and accessories in Europe, was dissolved due to the development of more effective independent distributors in Europe.
1966 – Remington commemorated the 150th anniversary of its founding.
Demand for Remington “Blue Rock” clay targets exceeded the capacity of the Findlay plant. A small factory building was purchased in Ada, Oklahoma for a new clay target plant. Production began in early 1967.
1967 – Cartuchos de Portivos de Mexico, SA, in which Remington had a 40% interest, declared its first cash dividend. The manufacture and marketing of centerfire pistol and revolver ammunition had been added to the production of shotshells, rimfire cartridges, and lead shot.
1969 – Remington completed the sale of its power tool business to DESA Industries, Inc. Two plants were included in the transaction.
1970 – Remington constructed a new ammunition plant in Lonoke, Arkansas. The site was considered to be near the geographic center of the sporting ammunition market.
A new facility to produce clay targets was completed at Athens, Georgia, beginning production in 1971.
The assets and business of Brewer Engineering Corp., in which Remington held a 58.4% interest, were acquired by Parke-Davis and Company in exchange for common stock.
1971 – Remington contracted to purchase additional property and building in Ilion, New York from the Univac division of Sperry-Rand. This property would later be developed to provide additional firearms manufacturing capacity.
The company purchased 396,000 shares of its common stock from the trustees of Columbia University for $4 million cash.
The Mexican government closed all the country’s retail outlets for firearms and ammunition which forced Cartuchos de Portivos de Mexico SA to suspend most of its ammunition operations.
1974 – Remington formed a German sales subsidiary, Remington Arms GmbH in Wurzburg. The subsidiary was liquidated in 1988.
1975 – Construction of a new target plant in Findlay, Ohio began on company owned land adjacent to the existing 100 year-old facility. Construction was completed in 1976.
Remington purchased 589,000 shares of its common stock from Fidelity Union Trust Co., the executor of the estate of Geraldine R. Dodge. DuPont’s percentage ownership of Remington increased to approximately 70%.
1978 – Cartuchos de Portivos de Mexico SA, in which Remington owned a 40% interest, changed its name to Industria Technos SA.
1979 – Remington acquired the Hazen, Arkansas plant from the Van Heusen Shirt Co. Some of the Powder Metal operations moved from the Ilion plant to Hazen, and the plant became operational in 1980.
1980 – DuPont purchased the remaining shares of stock of Remington, and the company became a wholly-owned subsidiary.
1981 – Remington dissolved its Canadian subsidiary.
1984 – Remington announced that it would move its headquarters from Bridgeport, Connecticut to Wilmington, Delaware to reduce costs and improve communications with DuPont. Approximately 50 people from various administrative functions were moved to Wilmington from late 1984 to early 1986.
1985 – Remington turned over the operation of the Lake City Arsenal in Independence, MO to Olin Corporation. Remington had operated this facility for the U.S. government for more than 45 years.
1986 – Remington sells its Abrasive Products business and the Barnum Avenue site in Bridgeport, Connecticut to RemGrit Corporation.
1990 – DuPont transferred ownership of Remington Arms Company to a wholly-owned Delaware holding company, DuPont Chemical and Energy Operations, Inc. (DECO).
1992 – Remington assumed marketing responsibility for DuPont’s “Stren” fishing line and associated fishing products.
1993 – DuPont sells the assets of Remington to RACI Acquisitions, a company organized by the New York investment firm of Clayton, Dubilier and Rice, for approximately $300 million on December 1.
1994 – Remington announces that it will build a new facility for research and development in Elizabethtown, Kentucky. The new facility will open in 1995.
1995 – Remington announces that its headquarters will move from Wilmington, Delaware to Rockingham County, North Carolina. Forty-nine employees relocate.
Remington announces the discontinuation of its Apparel business.
The Remington Shooting School is organized at a gun club near its plant in Ilion, New York.
Remington enters the firearm security safe business. This new category includes a good, better, best selection of Sportsman, Classic and Premier Safes.
1996 – Remington builds a new headquarters facility near Madison, North Carolina. Construction is completed in mid-year.
Remington announces plans to develop a new Firearms manufacturing facility in Graves County, Kentucky, with plans to invest several million dollars in plant and equipment.
Remington enters the in-line black powder accessory business and is immediately considered one of the major players in this business. At the same time, Remington enters the hearing protection business and expands its involvement in the safety and protection aspect of the shooting sports industry.
1997 – Remington opens a new Firearms plant near Mayfield, Kentucky to supplement the Ilion plant. The new Mayfield site is the first new Remington Firearms plant built since 1828.
Remington introduces the Model 597 rimfire rifle family and manufactures the gun at the new Mayfield facility. The 597 is a new design focusing on functional reliability and benchmark accuracy.
Remington reintroduces the Remington No. 1 Rolling Block Creedmoor rifle in .45-70 Government. Not a replica, but a reintroduction, the Creedmoor was produced by Remington in the latter half of the 19th century.
Remington celebrates 15 years of the highly collectible bullet knife series. Also, Remington becomes recognized as one of the top firearm safe companies in the world.
1998 – Remington adds the new 3 1/2-inch Super Magnum to its best selling line of Model 870 Express pump-action shotguns. These guns are built with the brute strength and reliability of our legendary Model 870 Wingmaster, but with the added versatility of being able to handle 12-ga. 2 3/4 to 3 1/2-inch loads.
Remington develops a new packaging scheme for all categories that positions its multiple lines under one brand and one look. The new packaging maximized space for the retailers and allowed increased market share in all categories.
Remington launches http://www.remington.com/, providing rich product information, support and services.
1999 – Remington produces the first new centerfire magnum case in 87 years–the .300 Remington Ultra Mag. Chambered in nine different Model 700 configurations the new .300 Remington Ultra Mag represents the first commercially available non-belted magnum.
Summer of 1999 begins a new chapter for Remington with the advent of its new television series–Remington Country. Viewers will see hunters capture America’s most popular game while celebrating the outdoors, sportsmanship, ethics, and conservation, as well as receive shooting tips from the Remington experts.
Remington enters the one handed knife business with the introduction of the “Rattlesnake” line. This new line attracts a new demographic consumer for Remington.
2000 – Remington enters the Gunsmithing tools category and expands its focus on industrial sales.
2004 – In an effort to broaden its core offerings to the domestic security marketplace Remington announces plans to distribute advanced license plate technology through a joint venture (Remington-Elsag), and to introduce advanced technology and surveillance systems through a new Remington LE Technologies Division.
Remington announced in February of 2004 the formation of a new subsidiary, Spartan Gunworks by Remington. This will help to bring a line of quality, value-priced shotguns to the U.S. market. We will initially be offering three break-action shotguns, a youth version, single shot, side by side, and over&under, most in a full range of gauges.