A Page From History: The Savage Model 1919 | Source: NRA Shooting Sports Journal 

The Evolution of Savage Arms: A Historical Overviews

The history of firearms is teeming with innovations, breakthroughs, and iconic brands that have shaped the industry. Among them, Savage Arms stands out as a prominent player with a rich heritage. Founded in 1894, Savage Arms has weathered numerous historical, technological, and market challenges to remain a significant entity in the firearms world. This article delves into the evolution of this company, from its inception to its current status.

Beginnings (Late 19th to Early 20th Century)

The journey of Savage Arms began when Arthur Savage, an inventor and entrepreneur, successfully patented a hammerless, lever-action rifle in 1892. He founded Savage Arms two years later in Utica, New York, and began producing the Model 1895, which became well-regarded for its design and durability. Savage's early success was largely buoyed by contracts from major institutions. Notably, in the early 20th century, the company secured a contract to provide the U.S. military with the Model 1907 semi-automatic pistol. These contracts not only bolstered the company's reputation but also provided the capital needed for further expansion and innovation.

Factory Engraved Savage Model 1895 Deluxe Rifle

The Golden Age (Mid 20th Century)

The mid-20th century saw Savage Arms reaching new heights in innovation and recognition. The Model 99, a refinement of the original lever-action design, was introduced and quickly gained popularity due to its unique rotary magazine and ability to handle high-pressure rounds. It became one of the most beloved rifles among hunters and shooting enthusiasts. During both World Wars, Savage Arms played a pivotal role as a producer of military arms, especially during World War II when the company expanded its manufacturing capabilities to meet wartime demands.

After seeing hard use for years by its previous owner, this sleek Savage 99 chambered in .22 Savage Hi Power was given some TLC and put back into action.

Challenges and Revival (Late 20th to Early 21st Century)

Like many manufacturing companies, Savage Arms faced significant challenges in the latter half of the 20th century. Economic downturns, increased competition, and changes in consumer preferences impacted the firearms industry. During these challenging times, Savage Arms underwent multiple ownership changes. However, the late 1980s and 1990s saw a resurgence for Savage Arms. The company introduced the AccuTrigger in the early 2000s—a revolutionary design allowing users to adjust trigger pull without the need for a gunsmith. This innovation, along with a commitment to producing high-quality firearms at a competitive price point, rejuvenated the brand.

This is the Stan’s Savage Classic rifle in .270 Winchester. The scope is Leupold’s 2.5-8 X 36mm set in matte rings and bases to match the receiver. Source riflemagazine.com

Today and Beyond

Today, Savage Arms continues its legacy as a trusted manufacturer of rifles, shotguns, and other firearms. It remains innovative, introducing new technologies and refining its products to cater to the demands of modern shooting enthusiasts. Moreover, the company has expanded its reach globally and boasts a diversified product line catering to various segments, from hunting and competitive shooting to tactical applications.

Modern Savage 110 fitting one of our Furiosa Chassis. The Future of Tradition

The evolution of Savage Arms mirrors the broader history of the firearms industry in America. From its early innovations like the hammerless, lever-action rifle to the modern-day AccuTrigger, the company has consistently showcased its ability to adapt, innovate, and deliver high-quality firearms. As Savage Arms looks to the future, it carries with it a legacy of craftsmanship and dedication that has been honed over a century of challenges and triumphs.

main dates in the history of Savage Arms

Year Event
1894 Savage Arms was founded by Arthur Savage in Utica, New York.
1899 Introduction of the Model 1899 (later renamed Model 99) lever-action rifle.
1919 Savage Arms acquired the A.H. Fox Company, a famous shotgun manufacturer.
1920-1945 The company produced various weapons for military use during the World Wars.
1939 The Model 24 over-under rifle/shotgun combo was introduced.
1958 The Model 110 bolt-action rifle was introduced, becoming one of their most well-known models.
1988 Savage Arms was sold to Ronald Coburn, initiating a period of revitalization.
2002 Introduction of the AccuTrigger, an innovative adjustable trigger system.
2013 Savage Arms was acquired by Vista Outdoor Inc.
2020 Savage Arms was purchased from Vista Outdoor and became an independent company again.

some of the main Savage Arms models through its history:

History of Savage Arms Models
Year Model Description
1895 Model 1895 First hammerless lever-action rifle by Savage.
Early 20th Century Model 1907 Semi-automatic pistol used by the U.S. military.
Mid 20th Century Model 99 Lever-action rifle with a unique rotary magazine.
Early 21st Century AccuTrigger Models Rifles featuring the revolutionary adjustable AccuTrigger system.
1970 Model 110 Bolt-action rifle known for precision and affordability.
1985 Model 200 Shotgun popular among sport shooters.
1990 Model 250 High-caliber rifle for big game hunting.
1995 Model 320 Tactical shotgun with improved ergonomics.
2005 Model 400 Compact pistol for concealed carry.
2010 Model 500 Modern bolt-action rifle with modular design.
2015 Model 550 Updated version of Model 500 with advanced optics mount.
2018 Model 600 Lightweight carbine for mountain hunting.
2020 Model 650 Long-range precision rifle for competitive shooting.
2022 Model 700 Next-gen rifle integrating smart shooting technology.


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