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Guns Born in the 1950s

by Drew Warden   |  June 18th, 2014 18
Like the guns featured in this article, Guns & Ammo magazine debuted in 1958.

Guns & Ammo magazine was also born in the ’50s, with the first issue published in 1958.

For some, thinking of the 1950s might conjure up images of famous musicians like Johnny Cash or Elvis Presley. For others, it might be the sleek and classy cars of the period. School textbooks often reflect on the large-scale introduction of television or of the Sputnik launch and ensuing Space Race between the United States and the Soviet Union.

Often overlooked are the excellent firearms that were designed during the ’50s which left us with some of the most popular and enduring guns to this day.

With factories still humming after World War II and the Cold War brewing in earnest, the 1950s constituted somewhat of a golden age in firearms design. While the battlefield introduced the world to new firearm designs in the early 20th Century, it was during the ‘50s that many guns were developed or innovated.

The resulting firearms, many of which thrive today, were groundbreaking at the time and earned their place in the history of gun design and manufacturing.

We compiled the following list of our favorite firearms born in the 1950s, and then sourced original photos from issues of Guns & Ammo dating all the way back to 1958. If you don’t find one of your favorite ’50s guns on this list, we encourage you to leave a comment below.

  • AJ

    The RPK, Vz58, Cz52, Walther P1 (granted a modernized p38) to name a few others

    • RockinRon

      I own a mint Walther PP (100 Yahr commemorative edition).

  • Jeremy Lahodik

    Savage 110

  • Terry Dell

    The M60 Machine Gun was our weapon mostly used on our
    UH-1 Helicopters in Vietnam. I remember it like yesterday sitting in the Crew
    Chief well in our UH-1 Helicopter shooting at “Charlie”… Those were the days.
    We also had M-16 rifles also but the M-60 were our standard weapons.

    • MustashMike

      Well I was there 71-72 (in Nam) only I flew front seat in a AH-1G Huey COBRA we used Mini-guns, I had twins in my turret, same round as the M-60, but way, way, way, more of them per minute. heheheeh

      • MustashMike

        Well shove some Cigarette Butts, in yur ears then, Oh Yeah, Pull some Fresh Sheep skin over your eyes too! Took me over 30 years not talkin abut it,, Get Over It Donnie, That’s how ya learn, is by mistakes, Oh You don’t make any right? Ka-Pow, Ka-pow. We were talkin bout gunz, not Nam.

  • Terry Dell

    I also had a “Colt Python” revolver. Just sold it a few months ago, it was made in 1978. Great weapon!

  • The Scot

    No Remington 740, 742, 7400? Same for the 76, 760, 7600. What’s up with that?

  • petru sova

    The resulting firearms, many of which thrive today, were groundbreaking at the time and earned their place in the history of gun design and manufacturing.

    Read more:

  • petru sova

    Quote: The resulting firea rms, many of which thrive today, were groundbreaking at the time and earned their place in the history of gun design and manufacturing. Quote:

    Who are you trying to kid. The gun that did survive which are few, have all been cheapened with cast steel parts, stamped sheet metal and plasticky parts. None are being made today with the same quality materials and workmanship. The guns being made today a nothing more than a bad joke and a financial rip off. Some plasticky pistols are now over 1,000 dollars and people are stupid enough to buy them. When they go to sell them they often get far less than what they paid for them Contrast this to the old guns that rise every day in price.

    • MustashMike

      Yeah I recon you are right… I like revolvers, old ones, nicer feel, better balance, don’t Jam, and don’t through casings.

    • F15TSGT

      The old Colt revolvers come to mind, like the Python, Colt Det. Spc. and Colt Diamond Back to name a few.

  • Jeff Cordell

    Where is the Smith & Wesson Model 19?

    • RockinRon

      I also have two Model 19’s. One of them is a 50th anniversary edition with 6.5″ and another with 4″ barrel lengths. I also have three Model 629’s (2.5″, 3″ and 4″ barrel lengths).

      • Jeff Cordell

        Yes skipping the Model 19 is questionable at best.

  • Long Snapper

    Regarding the comments listed next to the Ruger Single Six, there’s a bit of a stretch. The comment is that TV westerns such as “Bonanza” were huge in the 1950’s. Bonanza debuted on NBC on September 12, 1959. Only 15 of its total 430 episodes aired in the ’50’s. It would be much more accurate to say that Bonanza was huge in the 1960’s, which would mean it is not applicable for this subject. On a side note, the guns used by the characters in Bonanza were much too modern for the time period in which the series supposedly takes place. A common mistake for TV (and movie) westerns. A good series none the less.

  • MustashMike

    Well I have two .44 mag Ruger pistols I think one is late 50’s model 3 Screw, tack Driver, not may numbers in the serial. I love my 1952 Model 70 Winchester 30-06, she also knocks the Black Dot off a target at 100 yds.

  • Rockin’Ron

    I own two fabulous Colt Pythons (’69 & ’79) both in 6″ barrel lengths.

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