Editor's Note: For more on the modern history of Winchester's ammunition, click here.
“Winchester is a brand at the very core of the shooting sports and hunting heritage, and it’s humbling to know we have helped write history,” said Brett Flaugher, vice president of marketing, sales and strategy. “With a deep emphasis on innovative products, the Winchester brand remains one of the most recognized and respected brands around the world.”
Although the ammunition and gun businesses split up years ago, the two entities—Winchester Ammunition and Winchester Repeating Arms Co.—this year have teamed to celebrate the brand’s 150-year-old legacy.
Winchester Ammunition offers black-and-silver embossed packaging on .44-40 Win., .270 Win., .30-30 Win. and 12-gauge shotshells highlighting great artwork from Winchester’s past—including Philip R. Goodwin’s “Close Encounter” on the box of 150-grain .30-30s above. It also offers a series of 10 pre-production rifles from the “One of Five Hundred” Model 1866 “Yellow Boy” (above) commemorative rifle collection with custom embellishments and identification through Baron Engraving. The rifles have been allocated to various industry and conservation organizations—including the NRA—to raise funds to support shooting sports and our hunting heritage.
Winchester Ammunition also has chronicled its story with an online time line featuring photos, facts and videos with AH Field Editor Ron Spomer, Ashley Hlebinsky and others. Spomer, of course, is an outdoor writer and host of “Winchester World of Whitetail”; Hlebinsky is the curator of the Cody Firearms Museum at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, Wyo., where the Winchester collection of guns and ephemera resides today. Prepare to spend plenty of time gazing at the time line.
Winchester last produced the Model 1866 in 1898, but this year it is back, made for Winchester Repeating Arms Co. by Miroku. This marks the first time a new Model 1866 has worn the Winchester trademark since the Spanish-American War.
Winchester Repeating Arms Co. also offers commemorative, limited-edition .44-40 Win. guns with blued, 24-inch octagonal barrels and blued loading gate, a polished-brass and engraved receiver, and the Winchester “horse and rider” logo with the stylized WRA trademark. Walnut is grade V/VI.
“This is a very unique series of collectible firearms and ammunition that represents the Winchester brand and our 150 years of legendary excellence,” said Flaugher. “This is our opportunity to share with the world the history of Winchester, but also the story of a brand at the forefront of engineering excellence and new technologies in the development of ammunition and firearms.”