Remington: More than 200 Years Strong
Remington is America’s oldest gunmaker—with more than 200 years of firearm innovation—but it’s also been in the ammunition business since 1912. Its enviable name recognition wasn’t built on marketing hype or social media trends, either. That asset is a byproduct of a forward-thinking gene in the corporate DNA, one instilled at the very beginning that helps it innovate and survive and thrive through seemingly overwhelming challenges.
Remington Arms, the official name of the manufacturer of firearms and ammunition, is part of the Remington Outdoor Company family of firms today. Others under that corporate umbrella include Barnes Bullets, DPMS, Advanced Armament Corporation, Marlin, Bushmaster, Nesika, Parker Guns, Harrington & Richardson, Storm Lake, Dakota Arms, Tapco and Timbersmith. Official headquarters is in Madison, NC, and its ammunition is manufactured at five plants in four different states.
It’s no accident this veritable “who’s who” in firearms is gathered under one roof, especially with today’s wild swings in business climate, where capital improvements and shared resources can improve efficiencies and market share. In 2007 Cerebrus Capital Management acquired Remington, putting it under a newly formed Freedom Group. The move was so well planned it took only eight weeks for it to install new ownership/management, emerge with court approval, and carry on the tradition without a single slowdown in production, service problem or even late paycheck.
Eliphalet Remington wouldn’t recognize any of the machinery used by his namesake company today, although the blacksmith by trade would undoubtedly take pride in its ability to plan ahead and hammer through challenging times. There’s no shortage of legends as to precisely how the company was first established in New York state’s Mohawk Valley—famed for its gunmaking—although two are the most popular. One claims Eliphalet Remington Sr. sent his son, junior, to order a flintlock barrel, but insisted he watch how it was made. Upon his return they started making their own. The official version is that Eliphalet II forged his own barrel, had it rifled, completed the firearm and after taking second place in a nearby competition orders followed.
There is, however, little debate about the fact that the business was established as E. Remington in 1816. The operation was moved to its present location in Ilion, NY, in 1828, and in 1845 the company’s first complete guns were produced as part of a U.S. government contract. In 1856 the firm’s name changed to E. Remington & Sons after all three of his boys joined the firm.
In 1888 investors who owned United Metallic Cartridge (UMC) purchased the business. Remington Arms and UMC operated separately until 1912, when the pair merged as Remington-UMC and “big green’s” century-old footprint in the ammunition business began.
A huge order cancelled after World War I put a financial strain on the company and then the Great Depression hit. DuPont, flush with the profits from improvements it made in gunpowder manufacturing, purchased a majority share in the company in 1933. Peters Cartridge was added to the stable of firms a year later.
Who Owns Remington Today?
DuPont purchased the remaining shares in Remington in 1980 and held ownership until 1993, when an investment group purchased it for $300 million. Cerebrus Capital Management was the next buyer.
Ownership may’ve changed, but the dedication to innovation has remained the same. Roy Marcot’s book, “The History of Remington Firearms,” explains that at the very beginning the company employed, “….‘quality team’ concepts so familiar to us today.” New ideas were encouraged, according to Marcot, and through the early years the firm introduced cast steel barrels, an interchangeable-parts concept of manufacturing, typewriters, sewing machines and churned out 144,000 revolvers, 12,500 rifles, 20,000 carbines and 40,000 muskets during the Civil War.
The heavy lifting didn’t end then, either. Between 1914 and 1948 Remington filed more than 1,000 patents. The iconic Model 870 pump-action shotgun was introduced in 1950, then came the Model 700 rifle in 1962 which, aside selling in the millions, is also the basis for the Army’s famed M-24 Sniper Weapon System.
Like most ammo manufacturers, Remington’s best moving ammunition line is also their base line-up and most economical, Remington UMC. UMC stands for Union Metallic Cartridge Company. You’ll find these loads available in a wide array of calibers in both full metal jacket (metal case) or jacketed hollow point loads.
Remington Core Lokt
The company may have produced some of the most iconic firearms ever made, but the ammunition side of the business wasn’t neglected. Those now-familiar plastic-hulled shotshells are a prime example—a Remington innovation in 1960.
In 1939 it rolled out the Core-Lokt bullet, a game changer for hunters and a design that remains one of the most popular choices for sportsmen to this day. It is the original controlled-expansion bullet, innovative and cutting-edge at the time, deceivingly simple, undeniably effective and, as it turns out, budget-friendly.
The bullet’s solid lead core is bonded to a tapered copper jacket. Soft point and pointed versions are available in a variety of chamerings and bullet weights. With 2X expansion and high-bullet weight retention, it has an 80-year history of humanely dropping big game.
Remington Golden Saber
As the number of people with concealed-carry permits continues to skyrocket, Remington has responded with a variety of loads tailored for those who take self-defense seriously. Its time-tested Golden Saber bullets feature a bonded jacketed hollow point designed for controlled expansion, even at the lower velocities associated with some concealable handguns. It’s the projectile in the Ultimate Defense handgun line, which uses flash-reducing powder to make is a solid choice. You can also turn things up a notch with the company’s Golden Saber Black Belt line, which enlisted law enforcement input to improve on the design.
Remington Slugger & Other Shotshells
Remington has a full line of shotshells for every pursuit from clays, to turkeys, doves, waterfowl and more. Slug loads are also available. And there’s no shortage of rimfire options, either. If you really want some hyper-velocity fun with the family, pick up a pack of .22 Long Rifle Yellow Jackets. Those 33-grain bullets come sizzling out of the muzzle at 1,500 fps. Of course, for those more tame, vermin control situations, the CBee 22’s 33-grain bullet at 740 fps is a neighborly option.
Corporate umbrellas aside, the entire history of Remington includes one common thread; producing reliable and innovative products that perform in a manner enthusiasts deserve. And, its entire line of ammunition lives up to that tradition.
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