Oldest U.S. Firearms Maker Files For Bankruptcy

Mar 27, 2018

Remington Arms dates back to 1816 with ammunition and gunsmith plants in Connecticut and New York. The company has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in hopes of staving off creditors amid a slump in sales and public outcry over gun violence.

Over the years gun sales have been choppy, driven largely by fear new government regulations would make gun purchases harder. But those fears evaporated with the election of President Trump.

About half the guns in the US are owned by just three percent of the population. That has made the gun industry unstable. Another firearms manufacturer, Colt, filed for bankruptcy in 2015 and Ruger’s stock has plummeted.

Also, Remington is being sued by Sandy Hook families. The company makes the AR-15 Bushmaster, the gun used in the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting where 20 children and 6 adults were gunned down. Ten families of those killed are currently suing Remington in Connecticut’s Supreme Court. Lawyers in the case say the bankruptcy will not impact the suit in any material way.

Remington, which employs 3,500 people, is among the largest makers of guns and ammunition in the country.

Charles Lane filed this story for the New England News Collaborative, eight public media companies, including Rhode Island Public Radio, joining to together to tell stories of a changing region, with support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.