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Facts about Bushmaster: History, Locations and Information

By    |   Wednesday, 06 May 2015 10:29 AM

Bushmaster, a leading maker of firearms based on the popular AR-15 pattern, went from a bankrupt Maine gunmaker to an international powerhouse with locations in two states.

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Here are some key facts about Bushmaster and the high points of its history

The company's full name is Bushmaster Firearms International, LLC (Subsidiary of Freedom Group Inc., owned by Cerberus Capital Management). Founded in 1973, Bushmaster manufactures rifles and pistols based on the AR-15 pattern, including interchangeable parts that allow users to assemble custom rifles without needing specialized gunsmith tools. Bushmaster supplies police, military and civilian gun users. The company's headquarters is in Madison, N.C., with a manufacturing facility in Ilion, N.Y.


1973: Bankrupt firearms maker in Bangor, Me., purchased by Richard Dyke for $241,000.

2002: Bushmaster XM-15 rifle tied to D.C. Beltway sniper shootings which leave 10 dead and three wounded. Bushmaster later pays $550,000 to the families of some of the victims to settle claims of negligent distribution of weapons, but denies wrongdoing, according to the Portland Me. Press-Herald.
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2006: Dyke sells Bushmaster to Cerberus Capital Management for $70 million, according to the Press-Herald. Bushmaster becomes part of Cerberus subsidiary Freedom Group Inc., which also owns gunmakers Remington Arms Co., Dakota Arms Cos., Parker Gunmakers, H&R 1871 and Marlin Firearms.

2011: Freedom Group closes Bushmaster’s plant employing 73 workers in Windham, Maine, according to the Press-Herald.

2011: Bushmaster founder Dyke opens new gunmaker, Windham Weaponry, in former Windham Bushmaster plant; rehires many laid-off Bushmaster employees, the Press-Herald reports. Company manufactures AR-15 rifles.

2012: Bushmaster XM-15 used by Adam Lanza in Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Newtown, Conn. Cerberus Capital says it will seek to sell Freedom Group, including Bushmaster.

2014: Families of Sandy Hook victims sue Bushmaster and a gun shop over the shootings, claiming the rifle used by Adam Lanza should not have been sold to civilians, according to a news story on the company’s Bloomberg business profile. The gun belonged to Lanza’s mother, whom he killed at their home before heading to the school, killing 20 children, six staffers and himself.

March 2015: California public school teachers consider what to do about their pension being invested in Cerberus Capital, which says it has been unable to unload Freedom Group, including Bushmaster, according to CNN Money.

This article does not constitute legal advice. Check the current gun laws before purchasing or traveling with a firearm.

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Bushmaster, a leading maker of firearms based on the popular AR-15 pattern, went from a bankrupt Maine gunmaker to an international powerhouse with locations in two states.
facts about Bushmaster
Wednesday, 06 May 2015 10:29 AM
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