In the American Civil War, the North, with its many factories and arsenals, dominated in arms-making. But two Southern percussion handguns were expediently made.
Across the extended landscape of the battlefield that was North America during the Revolutionary War period, two well-known shoulder arms faced off against one another.
Eugene Stoner's 7.62 mm rifle was the basis for the AR-15 and M16.
An unknown German gunsmith before 1600 crafted this oval-bore .67-cal. rifle that was designed to fire 16 stacked charges of powder and ball in a rapid "Roman candle" fashion.
Both of these shotgun models have reached a milestone seldom seen in the firearm industry—the 10 million mark.
To mark production of the one-millionth Savage Model 1899 rifle, this very special milestone rifle was presented to the NRA.
This Sousa-grade smoothbore was the Ithaca Gun Company's finest shotgun model, and only 11 were produced.
Among the many treasures featured at the NRA National Sporting Arms Museum is a symphony of 120 fine Winchester Model 70 rifles and carbines.
One of the most intriguing artifacts directly associated with Alexander Hamilton, his powder horn, bears iconography derived from Sir Francis Bacon and Niccolo Machiavelli's political philosophy.
In 1858, William Caughy received this engraved Sharps Model 1853 Sporting Rifle for being the best shot.
This rare revolver features a detachable shoulder stock crafted from Circassian walnut with provision for screw-in tang sight.
This excellent-condition Jacob rifle and matching bayonet are on loan to the National Firearms Museum from Peter Dowd.
Staff Sgt. Donald Williams gathered a set of early Colt single-action revolvers and personalized them to express his gratitude to two prisoners who had been his friends in a POW camp.
Designed by Winchester in 1955, this .308 Model 70 with a built-in radio capitalized on the popularity of a new "transistor" nation.
This Model 1903 Springfield sporting rifle was constructed to the exact specifications of our 26th president, Theodore Roosevelt.
Carried by Trooper Louis B. Bishop during the Spanish-American War, this Colt Single Action Army .45 revolver now resides in the National Firearms Museum collection.
This Colt Single Action Army .45, manufactured in 1877, helps tell a tale of the past.
These limited-edition arms began as lesser-grade Parker shotguns that were stripped to a bare metal foundation and then elaborately embellished.
This elaborately engraved .50-caliber breechloader was specially designed for Napoleon Bonaparte's nephew, Emperor Napoleon III.
At the Camp Perry National Matches, George Farr pulled a Springfield rifle from the rack and made history.
This amazing Winchester, along with many other historic Roosevelt pieces, are now on loan to the National Firearms Museum.
These DuBiel Sporters, with their patented five-lug bolts, integral scope mount bases and distinctive floorplate lever-latches, became instant classics.
This 1937-manufactured custom Colt Woodsman pistol with ivory grip panels bends a few rules.
Her name was Phoebe Anne Moses, but the world knew her better as Annie Oakley. Her success with Buffalo Bill’s Wild West shows allowed her to acquire many fine firearms. One of her favorite handguns was an engraved Stevens .22 pistol fitted with mother-of-pearl grip panels. This well-known single-shot pistol, part of the Robert E. [...]
The Singer .45 pistol is the rarest of the World War II M1911 A1S, with only 500 being manufactured.
The rarity of this percussion handgun merited its inclusion in the collection of Robert E. Petersen and its subsequent donation to the National Firearms Museum.
This elaborately gold-embellished Alexander Henry .577-caliber howdah pistol is believed to be the finest ever made by this gunmaker.
In 1934, this unusual four-gun set of pistols were presented to a British military controller in Poona, part of the Southern Command and the oldest field army in India.
American TV network executive Sheldon Gilbert received this AYA 12-ga. shotgun, bearing the golden seal of the royal family, as a wedding present in 1965.
This engraved, ivory-stocked Colt was also owned by several notable collectors over the years including Joseph Hawley, 42nd governor of Connecticut.
In 1859, Colt received a patent No. for his handgun shoulder stock design that incorporated a canteen.
When noted actor and hunter William Holden died, one special rifle remained partially completed at a master gunsmith's shop.
The cased No. 2 Smith & Wesson revolver was presented to General W.T. Sherman in 1869 by members of his personal staff.
Over the course of five years, from 1958 to 1963, William Diefenderfer crafted two pairs of flintlock and percussion pistols, each made completely from scratch.
One of the most notorious outlaws of the era was Thomas Edward “Black Jack” Ketchum, who robbed his last train August 16, 1899, near Raton Pass on the Colorado/New Mexico border.
Spinning six-guns and beating the best at fast draw, Sammy Davis Jr.'s quickness with a Colt .45 was legendary.
Two classic pistols in the National Firearms Museum represent two World War II heroes of the Pacific Theater.
Despite changing to a new double-action revolver design for lighter recoil and speed in reloading, American military authorities found that these .38 caliber handguns were inadequate in the Philippine Insurrection, where charging Moro guerillas could not be reliably stopped despite multiple hits.
During his years as shooting editor for Outdoor Life magazine, Jim Carmichel had the opportunity to encounter many unusual sporting arms, but one of the strangest came to him with a tag attached. The old paper tag read, “Very dangerous“
The .44 Magnum cartridge was less than a decade old when publishing magnate Robert E. Petersen used it to hunt deer, elk, moose, black bear and a trophy brown bear.
National Firearms Museum
The NRA National Firearms Museum is home to the finest firearms collection in the world. Through 15 galleries spanning more than six centuries, this spectacular showcase offers the unique opportunity to view some of America's most significant firearm treasures.