Charter Arms

A Proud History

In New England's Gun Valley, gun making is a tradition that stretches back for generations. In 1964 a new tradition was born, when a young gun designer named Douglas McClennahan founded Charter Arms. McClennahan, who had previously worked for Colt, High Standard, and Sturm Ruger, had a vision: to produce a high-quality, reliable handgun that was also highly affordable.

He realized his vision with the introduction of his first offering: a .38 special, five-shot revolver called "The Undercover." At just 16 ounces, the new gun was the smallest, lightest steel framed revolver in the world with the fewest moving parts. A unique hammer block system gave gun owners unparalleled protection against unintentional discharge.

The Undercover's high quality, light weight, and reasonable price impressed law enforcement professionals and gun enthusiasts alike. It became the basis of Charter's success, and the platform upon which a comprehensive line of affordable, reliable firearms was built.

This success has continued to the present day as the Ecker family of professional craftsmen has maintained its high quality standards, its unmatched customer service, and its pride in the gun making industry. Learn more about Charter Arms

For years Doug McClenehan was a gun designer with several prominent American gun companies. Using his strong engineering and inventive background he decided to go out on his own and in 1964 founded Charter Arms. McClenehan and David Ecker were lifelong friends and in 1967 Ecker became a 50/50 partner in Charter Arms.

Timeline

  • 1972: David Ecker made a buy out offer to Doug and Ecker became the sole owner of Charter Arms.
  • 1984: Nick Ecker, David Ecker's son and the present owner of Charter Arms, joined the company and ultimately ran the manufacturing/production arm of the company.
  • 1988: The company was renamed Charco.
  • 2000: The company was renamed Charter 2000 to coincide with the change of the millennium. For a period of time between 2000 and mid-2007 the firearms were stamped with "Charter 2000."
  • 2002: The company was renamed Charter Arms. Nick Ecker becomes the sole proprietor of Charter Arms.
  • October 2004 Founder, Doug McClenehan passed away.
  • March 2005 David Ecker passed away.
  • 2007: Mid-year the firearms were stamped with "Charter Arms" and remain today.

Gun buyers worldwide have discovered the many unique features and benefits of these innovative, robust, reliable, and affordable high-quality revolvers. Charter Arms offers a unique lifetime warranty which covers all firearms made since 1998.

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