Marlin Firearms Throughout History

Marlin Firearms Throughout History

Today, the Marlin Firearms Company may be best known for its high-quality, small-caliber, semi-auto, and lever action rifles. In its 150+ years of history, Marlin has manufactured almost every type of firearm and survived two World Wars, the Great Depression, and a long history of ups and downs. Marlin firearms have been used for purposes like hunting, personal protection, and even war. The following dates are historical highlights of this influential company:  


John Mahlon Marlin left a Colt plant and began making firearms under his own name. The firearms he built include multiple single-shot models and revolvers. Because of the Civil War and the influx of settlers out west, Marlin recognized he needed to branch out from only producing small guns. When he got an opportunity to improve, remarket the military rifle to sportsmen, and manufacture the Ballard Rifle, he leaped at the opportunity.  


The Marlin Firearms Company was officially started. The Marlin 1881 lever action repeating rifle was introduced and well-received by the public, firmly establishing Marlin in the lever gun market and starting the unending production of quality lever action rifles.  


Marlin began producing a smaller framed .22 rimfire lever action gun with a solid top/ side ejection named the Marlin 1891. This firearm would begin the long history of highly coveted lever action designs. The Model 1891 was one of the weapons made famous by Annie Oakley in an exhibition shooting.   


John Marlin passed away and left the company to his two sons, Mahlon Henry Marlin, who became the president and treasurer, and John Howard Marlin, who became the vice president and secretary. They continued the company’s core goal of producing top-tier firearms.   


Marlin Firearms Company was purchased to become a part of the war effort and became Marlin-Rockwell. During World War I, the company changed from primarily building hunting and sporting rifles to strictly supporting the war effort.   


The Marlin 1891 went through design upgrades and became the Marlin 39A, which is the rifle that has been continuously manufactured for the longest time internationally (production of this rifle was postponed from 1917-1922 to support the war).   


Following a series of model updates, the Marlin 1893 became the M336, which is currently the second most popular sporting rifle across the globe.   


Marlin introduced the M60, a culmination of numerous configurations and model designations since the 1930s. This model is the second best-selling .22. The M60 was one of the firearms chosen to celebrate Marlin’s 150th anniversary.   


The large action New Model 1895 was released, built off the design of the older model by the same name and the M1893. It shoots .45-70, and its popularity has increased with the guide gun concept.  

For many years, the Marlin brand has been bought and sold between different companies and has not released any new firearms, instead continuing production of Marlin classics. However, some of these companies have released updated versions of Marlin’s models, like the New Model 1985.  Marlin has since been acquired by Sturm Ruger, this will ensure they will be in very good hands, and will be a stalwart firearm manufacturnig provider for the future.

American-Made Hunting Magazines  

With this monumental history and rifles of unquestionable quality, it is unsurprising that American Rifle Magazines chose Marlin magazines as one of the hunting rifle magazines that we supply. Our OEM-quality Marlin .22 magazines are guaranteed to fit your firearms and extend your use of these amazing weapons.