O.F. Mossberg & Sons Article

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O.F. Mossberg & Sons, Inc.
Incorporation
Industry Firearms
FoundedMarch 1919; 99 years ago (1919-03) [1]
Founder Oscar Frederick Mossberg and sons
Headquarters North Haven, New Haven, Connecticut, United States
Area served
Worldwide
Key people
Alan I. Mossberg ( Chairman)
Alan Iver Mossberg Jr. ( President)
Products Firearms
Scopes
US$24,600,000 [2]
Number of employees
500 [2]
Website www.mossberg.com

O.F. Mossberg & Sons (commonly known as Mossberg) is an American firearms manufacturer, specializing in shotguns, rifles, scopes, and firearm accessories.

Origins

Oscar Frederick Mossberg (1866-1937) was born on 1 September 1866, in Sweden, near the village of Svanskog in Värmland, and emigrated to the United States in 1886. [3] [4] Mossberg went to work at the Iver Johnson Arms & Cycle Works in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. While at Iver Johnson, Mossberg supervised the manufacture of revolvers and shotguns, while contributing some of his own patented designs, including a top strap latching mechanism for the Iver Johnson safety revolver. [3] [5] When Mossberg left Iver Johnson, he went on to manage the small factory of the C.S. Shattuck Arms Co. in nearby Hatfield, Massachusetts, which manufactured single- and double-barrel breechloading shotguns. From there he went to work for J. Stevens Arms & Tool Co., where he designed a small four-shot novelty pistol which he patented in his name. [3] Working out of an old barn behind his house, Mossberg and his sons made about 500 of these four-shot pistols between 1907 and 1909. [3] In 1914, Mossberg left Stevens, moving to New Haven, Connecticut in order to work for Marlin-Rockwell. [3] In 1919, when Marlin-Rockwell went out of business (they primarily made machineguns, and World War I had just ended), the unemployed 53-year-old O.F. Mossberg and his two sons, Iver and Harold, started a new firearms company of their own, O.F. Mossberg & Sons. [3] Renting a small loft on State Street in New Haven, the Mossbergs began work on a simple four-shot .22-caliber pocket pistol, the Brownie. [3] Marketed largely to hunters and trappers for the humane killing of wounded or trapped animals, approximately 37,000 Brownie pistols were produced from 1920 to 1932. [3]

Connecticut production

Thanks to the Brownie pistol, the Mossbergs' firearms business grew steadily, and in 1921 the company purchased a building on Greene Street in New Haven, Connecticut. [3] In 1922, the company introduced the first of a new line of .22 rimfire Mossberg rifles, a pump-action repeater designed by Arthur E. Savage, the son of the owner of Savage Arms Corp. [3]

After building a third factory in New Haven, Connecticut in 1937, Mossberg continued to produce simple, economical firearms for the civilian market. O.F. Mossberg died in 1937, and the business continued under his son Harold. [3]

During World War II, the company made parts for Browning M2 .50-caliber heavy machine gun and for the Enfield No. 4 rifle under contract, as well as the U.S. Model 42 and Model 44 .22 caliber bolt-action rifle, which was used for preliminary small arms training for the Army and Navy. [3]

In 1960, the company shifted production to a new facility in North Haven a few miles away. At one time, the plant employed hundreds of skilled workers, many of whom had previously worked at other well-known firearms manufacturers such as Colt's Manufacturing Company, Marlin Firearms, Smith & Wesson, and Winchester. O.F. Mossberg & Sons has remained a family-owned business to this day, and is the oldest family-owned firearms manufacturer in America. [6]

Today, while the corporate headquarters remains in North Haven, the company has moved nearly all firearms production to its Eagle Pass, Texas facility in response to new firearms legislation, and has reduced its North Haven workforce accordingly. [7]

Maverick Arms

In 1989, faced with increased foreign competition and rising labor and production costs, Mossberg's corporate affiliate Maverick Arms opened a 40,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in the Eagle Pass Industrial Park in the state of Texas. The Eagle Pass, Texas production facility was greatly enlarged in 2013 to help production and warehousing keep up with demand. With the addition of 116,000 square feet of factory space at the Eagle Pass facility, Mossberg also expanded its Texas workforce to 450 employees. [8] Today over 90% of all O.F. Mossberg & Sons shotguns and rifles are produced at the Eagle Pass, Texas facility. [8]

Production history

Following the success of the Brownie .22 pistol, Mossberg developed a line of inexpensive .22 caliber rifles, shotguns, and rifle scopes. [9]

From the 1940s through the 1960s, Mossberg produced a HI line of .22 caliber target and sporting rifles. [2] [10] [11]

After the end of World War II, Mossberg concentrated on producing sporting long guns for the entry-level sportsman, particularly shotguns. Most of these were bolt-action or pump-action designs. In August 1961, Mossberg introduced the 500 Series pump-action shotgun, which eventually became one of the most-produced sporting firearms in the world, with over ten million shotguns sold. [12] Designed by Carl Benson, Mossberg's lead design engineer, the 500 was originally intended for use by the entry-level hunter and sportsman but has since become popular for home defense use as well. Using a forged aluminum receiver and steel bolt that locks into a steel extension of the barrel to save weight, the gun was designed with a minimum of parts that could be produced easily with a minimum of machining required and which could be installed without hand-fitting. Variants of the basic Mossberg 500 shotgun have been adopted for use by the U.S. military as well as law enforcement.

Today, Mossberg offers bolt-action, lever-action and autoloading rifles as well as pump-action, autoloading, and over/under shotguns, some are made in Turkey, and some are assembled in the USA from parts made in both American and Mexico.

Products

References

  1. ^ "OF Mossberg & Sons, Inc. - Armed and Ready". US Industry Today. Retrieved 2008-05-29.
  2. ^ a b c "O.F. Mossberg & Sons, Inc.North Haven, CT, United States". Retrieved 2008-05-29.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Gun Digest, The Mossberg Story, 17th Anniversary Edition, Chicago: The Gun Digest Co. (1963), pp. 120-124
  4. ^ Sandqvist, Anders (27 October 2016). "Svenska släkten som har beväpnat Amerika" [The Swedish family that has armed America]. Expressen (in Swedish). Stockholm: AB Kvällstidningen Expressen. Retrieved 27 October 2016.
  5. ^ I. Johnson & O. Mossberg, U.S. Patent No. 511,620, Dec. 26, 1893
  6. ^ "About Mossberg". Retrieved 2008-05-29.
  7. ^ Haar, Dan, Upbeat Gun Industry Numbers Mask Deep Turmoil A Year After Law, The Hartford Courant, 6 April 2014
  8. ^ a b Miniter, Frank, America's Largest Shotgun Maker Shifts More Jobs to Texas, Forbes Magazine online, 11 July 2014
  9. ^ O.F Mossberg - A brief history of the early years
  10. ^ "O.F. Mossberg & Sons, Inc". McRaes BlueBook. Retrieved 2008-05-29.
  11. ^ "Mossberg International 702 Plinkster". Mossbergintl.com. Retrieved 2008-09-13.
  12. ^ Mossberg 500 Surpasses 10 Millionth Production Landmark, The Daily Caller, 30 April 2013

External links