Classic Firearms Ads Lost to Political Correctness

While for many readers, giving the gift of a firearm is a welcome item, for many in our society, it is a verboten topic. Yes, the firearms community is working to become more “mainstream”, but it’s always interesting to look back and see where we have come from.

The Tribunist worked to collect and collate 19 classic advertisements for firearms prior to the current state of political correctness removed these ads from mainstream publications, which for a recent example, one needs to only look to Daniel Defense’s attempted ad placement in the Super Bowl. 

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Looking over the ads, its hard to not become nostalgic… for the pricing! In one particular advertisement, a R.B. Mark 1 Anti-Tank Rifle goes for sub $100. In another, Marlin rifles are available from $10 to $13.25. Today, we are lucky to find toy rifles for that pricing.

Of course, there is also no getting around the ye olde surplus ads post World Wars, which had various service rifles selling for $9.95. Even Johnson semi-autos went for only $59…

Hit the link here to be taken down memory lane and a tour through the history of advertisement. The Tribunist’s collection covers quite a few different decades, including direct older print too closely associated activities throughout the early to mid part of last century.

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Nathan S

One of TFB’s resident Jarheads, Nathan now works within the firearms industry. A consecutive Marine rifle and pistol expert, he enjoys local 3-gun, NFA, gunsmithing, MSR’s, & high-speed gear. Nathan has traveled to over 30 countries working with US DoD & foreign MoDs.

The above post is my opinion and does not reflect the views of any company or organization.


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  • Audie Bakerson

    You can blame the NRA and their endorsement of the GCA for killing guns aimed at children.

    • Phillip Cooper

      What flavor Koolaid are you drinking?

      • Audie Bakerson

        Truth flavor. You can look it up.

    • Maxpwr

      That’s back when the Fudds were running the NRA. Get over something that happened 50 years ago. I guess this guy just needed to have a comment.

      • Frank Grimes

        “Back when” as if it still is not that way.

        How much money did Wayne fork over to Harry Reid “back when”?

        • Ranger Rick

          The NRA is “A Political” when it comes to party, they support whoever supports the 2nd Amendment. Just because the majority of the Democrats are anti doesn’t mean all are, theres still some old school boys in the party. Just like there are plenty of RHINO’s that play lip service to the 2nd for political expendency.

          Do some research.

          • Lowe0

            Not just old school boys; per the NSSF, millennials are taking up firearms as well. It’d be a huge boon for gun rights if pro-2A politicians would quit driving away those millennials.

          • Ranger Rick

            Absolutely, I believe that this is the future and between the NRA & NSSF using alternative media this will happen. The growth in the shooting sports and urban/suburban shooting venues who promote the NRA this trend will continue. It is also incumbent upon ourselves to reach out to millennials and Gen Xer’s.?

          • Oingo Boingo

            I personally know two Millennials that are in the process now of setting up firearm AND ammo manufacturing operations.
            Kids today !!!
            BOO-RAH !
            To borrow a line from the old Beatles movie “HELP”…
            They are also “…dead shots, shooting.”
            If you haven’t seen the flick for a while, check it out; it holds up pretty well considering its age.
            The Babe that has John concerned about her “filthy Eastern ways” is a hoot in her pink Chanel outfit with a matching pink Luger.
            There is also overt, very funny ridicule of a hybrid Hindu/Islam “religion” and its goofy practitioners that want to paint Ringo red and sacrifice him while wearing a ring he got from “…some Eastern Bird”.
            The (((film industry))) today would NEVER do what was done in that movie.

          • Ranger Rick

            I wish them well.

          • Frank Grimes

            So you’re saying Harry Reid is pro-gun?

          • Ranger Rick

            Till 2016 yes, it was Reid that stopped the dems from doing any gun control initiates, much to the consternation of Pelosi, Boxer, Schumer and Obama.

            Check the history, Reid got very high matks from the NRA.

          • Frank Grimes

            LOL!

            The fact that the NRA gave Harry Reid anything but a fat F is proof they are a crooked bunch of fudds.

          • Ranger Rick

            You really need to learn more about firearms politics.

          • Frank Grimes

            If “firearms politics” involves the organization that claims to be for gun rights giving money to an antigun pedophile, I don’t want anything to do with “firearms politics”.

      • Audie Bakerson

        They supported renewing the UFA a few years ago, so I guess the fudds still run it.

  • Anonymoose
  • Rusty S.

    Aside from the guns, I’d like that wild game cookbook for a dime!

  • Mattie Dimes

    That Remington .22 ad is great! My grandfather bought a Rem 514 for my father as his first firearm. It later became my first rifle, and once my son is a little older it’ll be his first too.

  • Disarmed in CA

    Armed Santa is polite Santa

  • Bill

    Times change. You don’t see advertisements for Chesterfields and laudanum either.

    • Cryin’ shame, that– ain’t hardly nothin’ beats a good slug-a laudanum for keepin’ the young’uns quiet.

    • Sam Damiano

      Your argument is hardly relevant. Tobacco was known to cause cancer in the 60’s and has been the subject of advertising restrictions. Laudanum is a class one narcotic by composition.
      BTW, are Chesterfields still around?

      • iksnilol

        trust me, laudanum is safer than tobacco. I could really go for some now as well.

  • codfilet

    I got guns for Christmas, and so did my friends, back in the good ol’ days. One year, my best friend got a Remington Nylon 66 in black and chrome-I sure envied that thing! I got a J.C. Higgins semi-auto .22 one year, with a sling that rolled up inside the stock! My brother got a Daisy model 94 BB gun one year, and promptly got it taken away for a while when he shot a sparrow with it.

  • Gary Kirk
  • gusto

    for real un-PC advertising google SAKO naken

    naken means nude but you won’t get the proper advertisment if you google sako nude, I guess there are a bunch of asian females named sako

    so SAKO gotta be in all caps + naken

    • iksnilol

      “I guess there are a bunch of asian females named sako”

      You found out about this… the “hard” way?

    • DW

      There are also a lot of Finnish beauties named Sako

  • FREEF

    Who decide what is “political correct”? Few people that try force all people to they personal values?The same people that think they can adoctrine our children against our desire?
    FREEDOM

    • GD Ajax

      Political correctness is the new right wing meme for whining about being criticized or for not getting what they want.

      • Dave

        Ha! I’m totally stealing that!

        Last time I checked gun advertizing these days still exists… Although the emphasis is squarely on tactigay rather than family fun around the X-mas tree… Particularly over here at “all ARs all the time” TFB. ::Chuckle:: erm, LOL!

      • Jaehaerys Targaryen

        Reminds me of the people who whine about PC going to far whenever they get triggered by someone saying “happy holidays.”

  • iksnilol

    I will be honest, I am always slightly annoyed when people look at 50-100 year old gun ads and say “Oh gee, guns were sure cheap back then”… yet nobody accounts for inflation 🙁

    • Doctor Jelly

      The $10 Marlin from 1902 the author is nostalgic for is about $270 after inflation today. That seems like a reasonable price and not at all an enamoring deal…
      People should stop reminiscing about the “cheap” firearms they neglected to purchase in the past (because they really weren’t as you couldn’t justify buying one at the time), and invest in the ones now. A hundred years from now that $400 gun today will be a $5000 one! With rates like that, why bother with the stock market?!

      • Ranger Rick

        That’s why I never bought a Colt SP-1 “back in the day” Way over priced for what you got. The Bush-41 AW ban took those over priced $750 rifles to $1,000 immediately. That’s about $1927.99 today. Would anybody pay $1927.99 for a brand new plain jane SP-1 today? This was also before all of the enhancements/ do dads for AR 15’s were even developed.

    • Bill

      I paid $69.95 for a Winchester 94 30-30 back in 1972 and still have it.
      I was making $3.25 dollars an hour then and yep we must factor in inflation.

    • JoshCalle

      I really regret not buying a mosin when they were $100.

  • alex archuleta

    Ha! See guns do make MEN out of BOYS it says so in the Stevens ad.

  • It’s interesting to see how many companies had plants in Massachusetts then and how few do today!

  • Cope

    Been to SC lately? This is last year’s advert- they have even better ones this year. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f6162ba0884676e2cb4bd633cc91afb7f0003aa6b8207f6a757305a2455098ef.jpg

  • Bill

    Borderline necropost, but our Sunday big-city paper had 3 sales inserts in it which contained firearms ads, one from a large gunshop. We also had a bunch right before deer gun season opened.

  • Andy S.

    Here in Canada, Just like many Countries in the World today have Organizations for Kids Called Army, Air, or Sea Cadets, which are Truly part of the Armed Forces(albeit, the Lowest “Branch” of the Service),,,,,,,I’m in my 50’s But I was an Army Cadet for 4 Yr’s prior to Joining the Regular Force at the age of 17(I even received My JUMP WINGS Through Cadets, and was the only Recruit in my Platoon @ Basic who was wearing my Wings, and “Cross Rifles & Crown”(Our Marksmanship “Award”) on Grad Day., But when I was in Cadets WE Trained on SMLE .303’s, and FN C1 A1’s(Chambered for .22 to use in our Indoor Ranges, and 7.62 & .303 on Open ranges), We even had Summer Courses like “Rifle Coach”, and “Rifle Coach Instructor”, Where WE became “Masters” of the Weapons we used(Even Culminating in Showing a group of Reviewing Officers our Mastery of the “Mad Minute” as a Cap-Off for the end of the Course. Today’s Cadet organizations don’t even Train w/ “REAL” firearms anymore,,,,Having Switched over to Air Rifles such as the Daisy 853C Legend,,,,,ALL BECAUSE OF “POLITICAL CORRECTNESS”

  • Warren Ellis

    CoD doesn’t create gun violence either you know. In fact the whole “violent video games make people more violent” has been proven to be a myth again and again promoted by SJWs and other “think of the children!” types on both the left and right.

    • Uniform223

      I know, I was just using it as an example.

    • Norm Glitz

      That must be why every marketer spends so much on advertising. TV, etc., has no effect on people.

  • Jaehaerys Targaryen

    Eh, gun manufacturers themselves like to put out super-edgey ads nowadays. Everything is ultra tacticool so that every gun owner can pretend to be a Navy SEAL or a Spetsnaz operator.

  • dltaylor51

    In 71 I bought a Ruger super blackhawk for $120 but factoring in the quality of the old three screws compared to the new models makes that gun was a real bargain,you will never see that build quality come out of Ruger ever again.

  • Frank Grimes

    I don’t need any silly for profit organizations, I have the Second Amendment.

    • Ranger Rick

      You have the hard work and donations of others, nothing on your part.

      • Frank Grimes

        I have a rifle and the basic human right of self defense and document that says my Right to bear arms “shall not be infringed”.

        I don’t need to send money to the NRA to give to Harry Reid so he can go buy “cheese pizza”.