• High Caliber History LLC

Smith & Wesson Startup Cost

Updated: Dec 18, 2019


Horace Smith and Daniel Baird Wesson officially began Smith & Wesson on November 18, 1856. Company records in possession of Smith & Wesson historian Roy Jinks reveal what it cost to get the company up and running.


Mr. Smith contributed $1,663 and Mr. Wesson contributed $2,003.68. They paid Rollin White $497 as a licensing fee for his patent on the bored-through cylinder, with an additional royalty of 25 cents per gun.

All told, it cost $4,163.68 to start a company that would go on to become a household name in the firearms business.


That initial startup cost paid off handsomely. By October 1865 - just shy of nine years later - both Horace and DB cleared $163,000 as annual personal income. They were the only two residents in Springfield, MA, with six-figure incomes.

DB Wesson's home, built in 1898.

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