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#OTD in 1959, Colt buys rights to the AR-15

On January 7, 1959, the firearms maker Colt acquired manufacturing and sublicensing rights to the AR-15 and AR-10 rifle's gas system—Eugene Stoner’s great gun innovation. ArmaLite, a subsidiary of Fairchild Engine and Aircraft Corporation, had been promoting Stoner's weapons for years as a good standard rifle for soldiers. However, the small company had met stiff resistance from elements of the military bureaucracy. Fairchild had been hit with profound financial problems and selling off the rights to Stoner's innovations amounted to a fire sale. Colt also had suffered financial setbacks and the purchase was a Hail Mary pass of sorts. The move, seen as a minor business transaction at the time, transformed the U.S. military, altered the coming Vietnam War, and changed the course of American social and political history for decades. It also made Colt and Stoner lots of money. Read how that happened in American Gun: The True Story of the AR-15.

ArmaLite created the AR-15 American Gun The True Story of the AR-15


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