Throwback Thursday: Sam Walker, Sam Colt & the Texas Rangers

It's a tale of two Sams, and without it, the story of America would have been very different.

posted on July 27, 2023

Say the name Samuel Colt, and to this day, savvy gunners will genuflect. He's the father of the modern revolver, and the company that bears his name is still making them. But did you know that Colt's first foray into the world of gun-making ended in bankruptcy? Believe it or not, in the very beginning, there simply wasn't enough demand for Colt's multi-shot handguns to make his venture turn a profit. That all changed with the introduction of a different Sam ... Sam Walker, the father of the modern Texas Rangers.

But just as Colt hadn't quite been able to make his "father" role work back in 1842, Sam Walker wasn't a Texas Ranger when he first encountered Colt's invention two years later, in 1844. That's because Texas didn't exist as a state yet (at the time, it was its own country). By 1845, however, Walker had been tasked with creating a mounted force of regulators for the new state ... and he just couldn't forget how the Colt revolvers he'd carried before had saved the day during a Comanche raid.

There's so much more to the story of the two Sams, and without that story, America would look different today. Our friends at American Rifleman TV have a terrific video for this Throwback Thursday that we hope you'll love as much as we do. To watch complete segments of past episodes of American Rifleman TV, go to For all-new episodes of ARTV, tune in Wednesday nights to Outdoor Channel 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. EST. For the latest firearms and shooting content, please visit


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