It was all so simple, once upon a time. Magnum rounds were few, the guns to chamber them even fewer. Today, that’s all changed.
“Back in the Jurassic era, when I was budding gun weenie, I pretty much knew what a magnum was, and so did everybody else who was into guns. Back then—I’m talking the mid-1950s—there was little mystery as to what was and wasn’t a magnum. We had the .300 and .375 H&H that had been around since 1912 and 1925, respectively, the Weatherby line, and the .308 and .358 Norma Magnums. … [Still], in 1955there was not a single magnum cartridge of American origin being offered in a production-grade rifle from any or our major domestic gun manufacturers. What really started the Magnum Era here in America was the appearance of the .458 Win. Magnum, in 1956, followed two years later by the .264 Win. And .338 Win. Magnums. Finally, we had “our own” magnums, and they were just like all the others, in that they were based on the ubiquitous H&H belted case.” Jon R. Sundra, in his article “Magnum Schmagnum! What is and isn’t a Magnum isn’t as Simple as it Once Was,” appearing in the upcoming Gun Digest 2014, 68th Edition, available for pre-order now at www.GunDigestStore.com!
Did you like this quote? Then we think you’ll love our 3-Disc set of every Gun Digest volume printed since 1944. A must-have for collectors and devotees of our best-selling annual.