Colt's Manufacturing Company

Colt's Manufacturing Company
Colt's Manufacturing Company
Type Private
Industry Defense
Founded 1836
Founder(s) Samuel Colt
Headquarters West Hartford, Connecticut, USA
Products Firearms, weapons
Revenue increase
Employees ~ (2004)

Colt's Manufacturing Company (CMC, formerly Colt's Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company) is a United States firearms manufacturer, whose first predecessor corporation was founded in 1836 by Sam Colt. Colt is best known for the engineering, production, and marketing of firearms over the later half of the 19th and the 20th century. Colt's earliest designs played a major role in the popularization of the revolver and the shift away from earlier single-shot pistols. While Sam Colt did not invent the revolver concept, his designs resulted in the first very successful ones.

The most famous Colt products include the Walker Colt, Single Action Army or Peacemaker, and the Colt Python. John Browning worked for Colt for a time, and came up with a design for a semiautomatic pistol, which debuted as the Colt M1900 pistol and eventually evolved into the Colt M1911 pistol. Though they did not develop it, for a long time Colt was primarily responsible for all M16 rifle production, as well as of many derivative firearms. The most successful and famous of these are numerous M16 carbines, including the Colt Commando family, and the M4 carbine.

In 2002, Colt Defense was split off from Colt's Manufacturing Company. Colt Manufacturing Company now serves the civilian market, while Colt Defense serves the law enforcement, military, and private security markets worldwide.



Pre Civil War

Samuel Colt received a British patent on his improved design for a revolver in 1835,[1] and two U.S. patents in 1836, one on February 25 (later numbered U.S. Patent 9430X) and another on August 29 (U.S. Patent 1,304). That same year, he founded his first corporation for its manufacture, the Patent Arms Manufacturing Company of Paterson, New Jersey, Colt's Patent.[2] This corporation suffered quality problems in production. Making firearms with interchangeable parts was still rather new (it had reached commercial viability only about a decade before), and it was not yet easy to replicate across different factories. Interchangeability was not complete in the Paterson works, and traditional gunsmithing techniques did not fill the gap entirely there. The Colt Paterson revolver found patchy success and failure; some worked well, while others had problems. The United States Marine Corps and United States Army reported quality problems with these earliest Colt revolvers.[2][3] Production had ended at the New Jersey corporation by 1842.[2]

Between 1842 and 1848, Samuel Colt collaborated with the Whitney armory of Whitneyville, Connecticut,[2] which was run by the family of Eli Whitney (of cotton gin and interchangeability-evangelizing fame). Eli Whitney Jr (born 1820), the son of the cotton-gin-developer patriarch, was the head of the family armory and a successful arms maker and innovator of the era. Colt used a combination of renting the Whitney firm's facilities and subcontracting parts to the firm to continue his pursuit of revolver manufacture..[4]

During the Mexican–American War (1846–1848), Colt's revolvers found favorability with Texan volunteers (the progenitors of later Texas Rangers cavalry groups), and they placed an order for 1,000 larger revolvers that became known as the Walker Colt, ensuring Colt's continuance in manufacturing revolvers.[3] In 1848, Colt was able to start again with a new corporation of his own. He founded the Colt's Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company in Hartford, Connecticut.[2]

The 1850s were a decade of phenomenal success for the new Colt corporation. Colt was one of the early influential companies in the race to widely commercialize the total use of interchangeable parts throughout a product.[5] At London's Crystal Palace Exhibition in 1851, a Colt exhibit disassembled ten guns and reassembled ten guns using different parts from different guns. Though the U.S. was not directly involved in the Crimean War (1854–1856), Colt's weapons were used by both sides. In 1855 Colt unveiled new state-of-the-art armories in Hartford and in London, stocked with the latest machine tools (some of which were of Colt's devising), many built by Francis A. Pratt and Amos Whitney, who would found the original Pratt & Whitney toolbuilding firm a few years later. For example, the Lincoln miller debuted to industry at these armories.[6]

Colt had set up libraries and educational programs within the plant for his employees.[7] Colt's armories in Hartford were seminal training grounds for several generations of toolmakers and other machinists, who had great influence in other manufacturing efforts of the next half century.[5][8] Prominent examples included F. Pratt and A. Whitney (as mentioned above); Henry Leland (who would end up at Cadillac and Lincoln); Edward Bullard Sr of the Bullard firm; and, through Pratt & Whitney, Worcester R. Warner and Ambrose Swasey (of Warner & Swasey).

Colt's presence in the British market caused years of acrimony and lawsuits among British arms makers, who doubted the validity of Colt's British patent and the desirability of the American system of manufacturing. It took many more years and a UK government commission before the point became universally accepted that such manufacture was possible and economical.[8]

In 1860 Colt produced a new revolver model for the United States Army.[9] This Colt Army Model 1860 appeared just in time for the American Civil War.

Civil War Years

The American Civil War was a boon to firearms manufacturers such as Colt's and the company thrived during the conflict. Sam Colt had carefully developed contacts within the ordnance department signing the very first government contract for 25,000 rifles. Colt's Factory was described as "an industrial palace topped by a blue dome" and powered by a 250-horsepower steam engine.[10] During the American Civil War Colt had 1,500 employees who produced 150,000 muskets and pistols a year. In 1861 and 1863 the company sold 107,000 of the Colt Army Model 1860, alone, with production reaching 200,500 by the end of the war in 1865.[11][12] In 1855 an employee of Colt's, Rollin White, came up with the idea of having the revolver cylinder bored through to accept mettalic cartridges. He took this idea to Colt who flatly rejected it and ended up firing White within a few years.[13] Colt historian RL Wilson has described this as the major blunder of Sam Colt's professional life.[14]

The Civil War made a huge fortune for the company, becoming America's first manufacturing tycoon, but Sam Colt did not live to see the end of it. He died of rheumatic fever on January 10, 1862 and his close friend and firearms engineer, Elisha K. Root, took over as Colt's company president. On February 4, 1864 a fire destroyed most of the factory including arms, machinery, plans, and factory records.[15] On September1, 1865 Root died leaving the company in the hands of Samuel Colt's brother-in-law, Richard Jarvis.[16] The company's Vice-president was William B. Franklin, who recently left the Army at the end of the Civil War. With the Civil War over and no new military contracts Colt's Manufacturing had to lay off over 800 employees.[17]

The company found itself in a precarious situation. Mettalic cartridge revolvers had been gaining in popularity, but Colt could not produce any because of the Rollin White patent held by rival, Smith & Wesson. Likewise, Colt had been so protective of its own patents that other companies were unable to make revolvers similar to their design. As the Rolin white patent was nearing expiration, Colt moved toward developing a metallic cartridge revolver.[18]

Post Civil War

Factory engraved Colt SAA

In November 1865, Franklin attempted to purchase a license to the Rollin White patent from competitor, Smith & Wesson. White and Smith & Wesson would take no less than $1.1 million, but Franklin and Colt's directors decided it was too large of an investment on a patent that would expire in 1868.[18] In the meantime, Colt turned its attention toward manufacturing goods other than firearms, such as watches, sewing machines, typewriters and bicycles.[19][20]

Colt's first effort toward a metallic cartridge revolver was by means of converting their existing percussion revolvers. The first of these conversions was patented on September 15, 1868 by Colt engineer, F. Alexander Thuer as patent number 82258. The Thuer conversion was made by milling off the rear of the receiver and replacing it with a breechplate containing 6 interneal firing pins. The cartridges were loaded through the mouths of the chambers. Colt made 5000 of these but they were not well accepted. Colt found the mechanism so complex it included a spare percussion cylinder with each revolver.[17]

Colt tasked their Superintendent of Engineering, Charles Richards, to come up with a solution. The Richards Conversion was performed on the Colt 1860 Army revolver. The caliber was .44 Colt and the loading lever was replaced by an ejector rod. This conversion added a breechplate with a firing pin and a rear sight mounted on the breechplate. Cartridges loaded into the cylinder one at a time via a loading gate. Colt manufactured 9000 of these revolvers between 1873 and 1878. In 1873 Colt performed the same conversion on the M1851 and M1861 revolvers for the US Navy in .38 rimfire.[21] Another of Colt's engineers, William Mason, improved this conversion by placing the rear sight on the hammer and along with Richards, he was granted patents in 1871 to convert percussion revolvers into rear-loading metallic cartridges revolvers. Those converted revolvers are identified as the "Richards-Mason Conversion".[22] There were approximately 2100 Richard-Mason M1860 Army Conversions made from 1877 to 1878 in a serial number range 5800 to 7900.[22]

After working on these conversions, Mason began work on Colt's first metallic cartridge revolver in 1871: the Colt Open-top revolver. This was a completely new design and the parts would not interchange with the older percussion pistols. Mason moved the rear sight to the rear of the barrel as opposed to the hammer or the breechblock of the earlier efforts. The caliber was .44 rimfire and it was submitted to the US Army for testing in 1872. The Army rejected the pistol and asked for a more powerful caliber with a stronger frame. Mason redesigned the frame to incorporate a topstrap, similar to the Remington revolvers and placed the rear sight on the rear of the frame; he consulted with Richards on some other improvements. The first prototype was chambered in .44 rimfire, but the first model was in the newest caliber known as the .45 Colt. The revolver was chosen by the Army in 1872, with the first order shipping in the summer of 1873 for 8000 revolvers.[23] The Colt Single Action Army or "Peacemaker" was one of the most prevalent firearms in the American West during the end of the 19th century. Colt still produces this firearm, in six different calibers, two finishes and three barrel lengths. [23]

In 1870 Colt had bought the National Arms Company, a Brooklyn, New York company known for manufacturing derringers and for circumventing the Rollin White patent by utilizing a unique cartridge. Colt continued to produce the .41 Rimfire derringer after the acquisition as an effort to help break into the metallic cartridge gun market. In addition to the derringers, Colt released a subsequent design called its “New Line” revolver models based on William Mason's patents which debuted in 1873.[24]

After the succes of the Colt Single Action Army and Colt's conversion of existing percussion revolvers to Richards-Mason conversions, Mason went on to design Colt's first Double-action revolver, the Colt M1877. Following this, he once again teamed up with Richards to produce a larger framed version, the Colt M1878 Frontier. It was Colt's first large frame double action revolver. It combined the front end of the Single Action Army revolver with a double action 6 shot frame mechanism. It was available commercially in numerous calibers. [25]

Colt finally left the "loading gate concept" for a swing-out cylinder on its revolvers with the Colt M1889 Navy revolver, which resembled the Colt M1878 and was based on another design by Mason. The model was produed for three years between 1889 and 1892, and eclipsed by the Colt M1892 chambered in .38 Long Colt. The M1892 was replaced by the New Service Double Action revolver in 1899. In caliber .45 Colt, the New Service was accepted by the U.S. Military as the Model 1909 .45 revolver. The New Service revolver was available in other calibers such as .38 Special, and later in the 20th century: .45 ACP ( as the M1917 revolver) and .357 Magnum.[26]

Under a contract with the U.S. Army Colt Arms built the Model 1895 ten-barrel variant of the Gatling Gun, capable of firing 800-900 .30 Army rounds per minute, and used with great effect at the Battle of San Juan Hill.[27] The M1895 Colt-Browning machine gun or "Potato Digger" was built by Colt. The Colt-Browning was one of the first gas-operated machine guns, originally invented by John Browning. It became the first automatic machine gun adopted by the United States and saw limited use by the U.S. Marine Corps at the invasion of Guantánamo Bay and by the 1st Volunteer Infantry in the Santiago campaign during the Spanish-American War. In 1901, Elizabeth Jarvis Colt sold the company to a group of outside investors based in New York and Boston.[28]

20th century

Model of 1911 Colt Pistol, U.S. Army, first year of production (1912)

During World War 1 Colt achieved the best records in its history to date. Prior to America's entry in the war orders from Canada and the United Kingdom pushied its backorders to three years. Colt responded by hiring 4,000 employees for a total of 10,000 workers and saw a 400% increase in its stock price. By 1918 Colt had produced and sold 425,500 of the John Browning-designed M1911. Because they could not keep up with the US Military's demand for this pistol a decision was then made to accept Colt New Service revolvers in caliber .45 ACP as a substitute weapon. This New Service variant in 45 ACP was called the M1917 revolver. Competing manufacturer, Smith & Wesson, made double action revolvers in .45 ACP, which were accepted and issued by the U.S. military under the same name. Colt produced 151,700 revolvers during the war as well as 13,000 Maxim-Vickers machineguns and 10,000 Browning machine guns with an additional 100,000 under subcontract to other companies. Since Auto Ordnance had no tooling for production, Colt acquired the license for the Thompson 1921 SMG and made a first batch of 15,000 pieces the first production year.[4]

The stock market crash of 1929 and the ensuing Great Depression resulted in a slowing down of production for Colt. In anticipation of this, company presidents William Skinner and Samuel Stone implemented a diversification program similar to what they had done at the close of the American Civil War. Colt aquired contracts for business machines, calculators, dishwashers, motorcycles, and automobiles; all marketed under a name other than Colt. Samuel Stone aquired a firm which manufactured plastics and renamed it "Colt rock" as well as a company that manufactured electrical products. Colt weathered the financial crises of the time by cutting the work week, reducing salaries, and keeping more employees on the payroll than they needed. These measures kept the company in business but ate up the cash surpluss they aquired during the World War 1 years.[4]

In 1935 after employees voted to disband a labor union 1,000 workers went on strike for 13 weeks. The strike often turned violent with strikers attacking workers and detonating a bomb in front of the company president Samuel M. Stone's house. The company set up a barracks, dining room, and recreation room for workers within the Colt Armory during the strike. On June 3, 1935 the National Recovery Administration ruled that the company was within its rights not to deal with the union and the strike ended. In the year following the strike, the factory was hit by a hurricane and flood. Many company shipping records and historical documents were lost as a result.[29]

At the beginning of World War 2, Colt ceased production of Single Action Army revolver to devote more time to filling orders for the war with no plans to resume production. During the war Colt manufactured over 629000 M1911A1 pistols as well as a large number of M1917 water-cooled machineguns.[30] The company had a workforce of 15,000 men and women in 3 factories and production ran on 3 shifts 24 hours a day and won the Army-Navy rating of "E" for excellence.[31] However, the company was losing money every year due to mismanagement, an embittered workforce that had been stretched to its limits, and its manufacturing methods were becoming obsolete.[4]

As the war ended and demand for military arms came to a halt, production literally ceased. Many long time workers and engineers retired from the company and nothing was built from 1945 to 1947. Mismanagement of funds during the war had a serious impact as the 105 year-old firm faced possible bankruptcy. In September 1955 the board of directors voted to merge Colt with an upstart conglomerate called Penn-Texas, which had acquired Pratt & Whitney Machine Tool the same year. In 1958 Penn-Texas merged with Fairbanks-Morse to form the Fairbanks-Whitney Corporation and in 1964 the conglomerate reorganized as Colt Industries. In 1956, Colt resumed production of the Single Action Army revolver and in 1961 began making connemorative versions of their classic models.[32][4]

The 1960s were boom years for Colt with the escalation of the Vietnam War, Robert McNamara shutting down the Springfield Armory, and the U.S. Army's subsequent adoption of the M16, to which Colt held the production rights anf would sell iver 5 million units worldwide. Colt would capitalize on this with a range of AR-15 derivative carbines. They developed AR-15 based Squad Automatic Weapons, and the Colt SCAMP, an early PDW design. The Colt XM148 grenade launcher was created by Colt's Design Project Engineer, gun designer Karl R. Lewis. The May 1967 "Colt's Ink" newsletter announced that he had won a national competition for his selection and treatment of materials in the design. The newsletter stated in part, "In only 47 days, he wrote the specifications, designed the launcher, drew all the original prints, and had a working model built". At the end of the 1970s, there was a program run by the Air Force, to replace the M1911A1. The Beretta 92S won, but this was contested by the Army. The Army ran their own trials, leading eventually to the Beretta 92F being selected as the M9.[33]

The 1980s marked fairly good years for Colt, but the coming end of the Cold War would change all that. Colt had long left innovation in civilian firearms to their competitors, feeling that the handgun business could survive on their traditional revolver and M1911 designs. Instead, Colt focused on the military market, where they held the primary contracts for production of rifles for the US military. This strategy dramatically failed for Colt through a series of events in the 1980s. In 1984, the U.S. military standardized on the Beretta 92F. This was not much of a loss for Colt's current business, as M1911A1 production had stopped in 1945. Meanwhile, the military rifle business was growing because the U.S. Military had a major demand for more upgraded M16s, the M16A2 model had just been adopted and the Military needed hundreds of thousands of them.[34][33]

In 1985, Colt's workers, members of the United Auto Workers went on strike for higher wages. This strike would ultimately last for five years, and was one of the longest running labor strikes in American history.[35] With replacement workers running production, the quality of Colt's firearms began to decline. Dissatisfied with Colt's production, in 1988 the U.S. military awarded the contract for future M16 production to Fabrique Nationale.[36]

Some criticized Colt's range of handgun products in the late 1980s as out of touch with the demands of the market, and their once-vaunted reputation for quality had suffered during the UAW strike. Colt's stable of double action revolvers and single action pistols were seen as old fashioned by a marketplace that was captivated by the new generation of "wondernines" - high-capacity, 9x19mm Parabellum caliber handguns, as typified by the Glock 17. Realizing that the future of the company was at stake, labor and management agreed to end the strike in an arrangement that resulted in Colt being sold to a group of private investors, the State of Connecticut, and the UAW itself.[37]

The new Colt first attempted to address some of the demands of the market with the production in 1989 of the Double Eagle, a double action pistol heavily based on the M1911 design, which was seen as an attempt to "modernize" the classic Browning design. Colt followed this up in 1992 with the Colt All American 2000, which was unlike any other handgun Colt had produced before. The Colt All American 2000 was a polymer framed, rotary bolt, 9X19mm handgun with a magazine capacity of 15 rounds. It was designed by Reed Knight, with parts manufactured by outside vendors and assembled by Colt; its execution was disastrous. Early models were plagued with inaccuracy and unreliability, and suffered from the poor publicity of a product recall. The product launch failed and production of the All American 2000 ended in 1994.[38][39] This series of events led to the company's chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1992.[40]


The 1990s brought the end of Cold War, which resulted in a large down turn for the entire defense industry. Colt was hit by this downturn, though it would be made worse later in the 1990s by a boycott by the shooting public in America. In 1994, the assets of Colt were purchased by Zilkha & Co, a financial group owned by Donald Zilkha. It was speculated that Zilkha's financial backing of the company enabled Colt to begin winning back military contracts. In fact during the time period it won only one contract, the M4 carbine. However, the U.S. Military had been purchasing Colt Carbines for the past 30 years (See Colt Commando). During a 1998 Washington Post interview, CEO Ron Stewart stated that he would favor a federal permit system with training and testing for gun ownership. This led to a massive grass-roots boycott of Colt's products by gun stores and US gun owners.[41]

Zilkha replaced Stewart with Steven Sliwa and focused the remainder of Colt's handgun design efforts into "smart guns," a concept favored politically, but that had little interest or support among handgun owners or Police Departments. This research never produced any meaningful results due to the limited technology at the time.[41] Colt announced the termination of its production of double action revolvers in October 1999 The boycott of Colt gradually faded out after William M. Keys, a retired U.S. Marine Lt. General, took the helm of the company in 2002. Keys salvaged Colt's reputation and brought Colt from the brink of bankruptcy to an international leader in Defense production.[41] In 2010 Gerald R. Dinkel replaced Keys as CEO, while Keys remained on the Board of Directors for Colt Defense.[42]

Colt has to compete with other companies that make M1911-style pistols such as Kimber and AR-15 rifles such as Bushmaster. Bushmaster has subsequently overtaken Colt in the number of AR-15s sold on the civilian market. Colt suffered a legal defeat in court when it sued Bushmaster for trademark infringement claiming that "M4" was a trademark that it owned. The judge ruled that since the term M4 is a generic designation that Colt does not specifically own, Colt had to pay monetary reimbursement to Bushmaster to recoup Bushmaster's legal fees. The M4 designation itself comes from the U.S. military designation system, whose terms are in the public domain.[34]

Colt has entered in several US contracts with mixed results. For example, Colt had an entry in the Advanced Combat Rifle (ACR) program of the 1980s, but along with other contestants failed to replace the M16A2. Colt and many other makers entered the US trials for a new pistol in the 1980s, though the Beretta entry would win and become the M9 Pistol. The Colt OHWS handgun was beaten by H&K for what became the MK23 SOCOM, it was lighter than the H&K entry but lost in performance. Colt did not get to compete for the XM8 since it was not an open competition. Colt is a likely entrant in any competition for a new US service rifle. Current M16 rifles have been made primarily by FN USA since 1988. However, Colt remains the sole source for M4 carbines for the US military. Under their license agreement with Colt, the US military could not legally award second-source production contracts for the M4 until July 1, 2009.[34]

Colt Presidents

  • Samuel Colt (1855-1862)
  • Elisha K. Root (1862-1865)
  • Richard Jarvis (1865-1901)
  • John Hall (1901-1902)
  • Lewis C. Grover (1902-1909)
  • William Skinner (1909-1911)
  • Col. Charles L.F. Robinson (1911-1916)
  • William Skinner (1916-1921)
  • Samuel Stone (1921-1944)
  • Graham H. Anthony (1944-1949)
  • B. Franklin Conner (1949-1955)
  • Chester Bland (1955-1958)
  • Fred A. Roff, Jr. (1958-1962)
  • David C. Scott (1962-1963)
  • Paul A. Benke (1963-1969)


The years in brackets indicate the year when production started, not the year of the model's patent.

Colt Python Silhouette .357 Magnum
Colt Anaconda .44 Magnum

Long guns

Colt manufactured several military long arms under contract including the M1918 BAR and Thompson SMG.

See also



  • Flayderman, Norm (2001), Flayderman's Guide to Antique American Firearms... and their values, Iola, WI, USA: Krause Publications, ISBN 0-87349-313-3. 
  • Parker, John H. (Lt.) (1898), History of the Gatling Gun Detachment, Kansas City, MO, USA: Hudson-Kimberly Publishing Co. 
  • Parsons, John E.; du Mont, John S. (1953), Firearms in the Custer battle, Harrisburg, PA, USA: Stackpole Books, LCCN 53-010563. 
  • Sapp, Rick (2007), Standard Catalog of Colt Firearms, F+W Media, Inc,, ISBN 9780896895348 
  • Smith, W.H.B. (Walter Harold Black) (Ed.) (1968), Book of Pistols and Revolvers. Completely Up-dated by Joseph E. Smith. (7th ed.), Harrisburg, PA, USA: Stackpole Books, LCCN 68-018959. 

Colt's influence on manufacturing technology


  1. ^ Roe 1916, p. 166.
  2. ^ a b c d e Hounshell 1984, p. 47.
  3. ^ a b Roe 1916, pp. 166–169.
  4. ^ a b c d e Grant, Ellsworth (2002). "Colt Samuel (1814-1862)". In Gregg Lee Carter. Guns in American Society: An Encyclopedia of History, Politics, Culture, and the Law. 1. ABC-CLIO. p. 128. ISBN 9781576072684. 
  5. ^ a b Roe 1916, pp. 164–185.
  6. ^ Roe 1916, p. 165.
  7. ^ Lendler (1997) p. 17
  8. ^ a b Hounshell 1984, pp. 15–65.
  9. ^ Smith 1968.
  10. ^ Kinard (2004) p.154
  11. ^ Flayderman (2007) p.94
  12. ^ Garrison, Webb (2011). Curiosities of the Civil War: Strange Stories, Infamous Characters and Bizarre Events. Thomas Nelson Inc. p. 452. ISBN 9781595553591. 
  13. ^ Ware, Donald L. (2007). Remington army and navy revolvers, 1861-1888. UNM Press. p. 231. ISBN 9780826342805. 
  14. ^ Boorman (2004)p.36
  15. ^ Grant, Ellsworth (2006). Connecticut Disasters: True Stories of Tragedy and Survival. Globe Pequot. p. 72. ISBN 9780762739721. 
  16. ^ Houze, Herbert G. (2006). Carolyn C. Cooper, Elizabeth Mankin Kornhauser. ed. Samuel Colt: arms, art, and invention. Yale University Press. p. 84. ISBN 9780300111330. 
  17. ^ a b Kinard (2004) p.124
  18. ^ a b Walter, John (2006). The Guns That Won the West: Firearms on the American Frontier, 1848-1898. MBI Publishing Company. p. 157. ISBN 9781853676925. 
  19. ^ Houze (2006) p.6
  20. ^ Smith, Merrit Roe (1999). "Samuel Colt". In John Whiteclay Chambers, Fred Anderson. The Oxford companion to American military history. Oxford University Press. p. 159. ISBN 9780195071986. 
  21. ^ Sapp (2007)p. 54
  22. ^ a b Sapp (2007)p. 55
  23. ^ a b Taffin, John (2005). Single Action Sixguns (2 ed.). Iola, Wisconsin: Krause Publications. pp. 38-39. ISBN 9780873499538. 
  24. ^ Sapp (2007)pp. 59-60, 64
  25. ^ Kinard, Jeff (2004). Pistols: an illustrated history of their impact. ABC-CLIO. p. 163. ISBN 9781851094707. 
  26. ^ Sapp (2007) pp. 96-97
  27. ^ Parker 1898, pp. 131–138.
  28. ^ Grant, Tina (1996). "Colt's Manufacturing Company Inc.". In Thomas Derdak. International Directory of Company Histories. St. James Press. pp. 70-72. ISBN 9781558623279. 
  29. ^ Lendler (1997) pp. 18-19
  30. ^ Thompson, Leroy Thompson (2011). The Colt 1911 Pistol. Osprey Publishing. p. 43. ISBN 9781849084338. 
  31. ^ Sapp(2007) pp. 48-49
  32. ^ Grant, Ellsworth S. (1982). "The Takeover". The Colt legacy: the Colt Armory in Hartford, 1855-1980 pages=177-179. Mowbray Co.. ISBN 9780917218170. 
  33. ^ a b Ayoob, Massad (2007). The Gun Digest Book of Combat Handgunnery (6 ed.). Iola: Gun Digest Books. pp. 218-220. ISBN 9780896895256. 
  34. ^ a b c Rottman, Gordon; Alan Gilliland, Johnny Shumate (2011). Title The M16 Weapon Series. Osprey Publishing. pp. 37-38, 43. ISBN 9781849086905. 
  35. ^ Lendler (1997) pp. 25-27
  36. ^ Lendler (1997) pp. 21-22
  37. ^ Hillstrom, Kevin (1994). Encyclopedia of American Industries: Manufacturing industries. 1. Gale Research. p. 859. ISBN 9780810389984. 
  38. ^ Hopkins, Cameron (2001). "Kimber Ultra Ten II". American Handgunner. Retrieved 2007-02-26. ""Some have been design breakthroughs,...while others have been utterly uninspiring, like the defunct Colt All-American 2000."" 
  39. ^ "Colt's renames Cadet pistol - Colt's Manufacturing Company Inc.'s Colt .22 Single Action pistol". Shooting Industry. 1994. Retrieved 2007-02-25. ""The gun was selling at the rate of 10-12,000 units per year, and for a manufacturer of our size, with 900 employees, it was not enough"" 
  40. ^ "The legend lives on - Colt files for bankruptcy". Shooting Industry. 1992. Retrieved 2007-02-26. 
  41. ^ a b c Brown, Peter H.; Daniel G. Abel (2003). Outgunned: up against the NRA : the first complete insider account of the battle over gun control. Simon and Schustes. pp. 63-65. ISBN 9780743215619. 
  42. ^ "Colt Defense LLC Announces Gerald R. Dinkel as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company". Business Wire. 2010. Retrieved 11 October 2011. 

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