Ruger Firearms is the most well-known division of Sturm, Ruger & Company, which also controls Ruger Golf and Ruger Investment Castings. It was formed in 1949 under the Sturm, Ruger & Co. name by William B. Ruger and Alexander Sturm. Bill Ruger was an amateur gunsmith who had replicated several Japanese "Baby Nambu" pistols captured during World War II. The silhouette and cocking mechanism of the Nambu were used in the Ruger Standard rimfire pistol, the company's first offering and first great success. The Standard's design was later modified for the Ruger Mark I, II, and III pistols, the last of which is still sold today.
Ruger produces a variety of guns for the commercial and law enforcement markets. Many of their most popular models are for the .22 Long Rifle cartridge and its variants, including the aforementioned Ruger Mark III, the 10/22 semiautomatic rifle, and the Single Six single action revoler. Other popular Ruger firearms include the P series of pistols, the Mini-14 rifle, and the Vaquero and Bearcat revolvers. The company currently produces hundreds of thousands of firearms per year.
Although Ruger Firearms produces several weapons which are widely regarded as the gold standard for beginners, they are in some ways still trying to regain their credibility in the eyes of some gun owners. In the late 80s, Bill Ruger went on public record strongly in favor of banning so-called "high capacity" magazines. He later stated on national television that "no honest man needs more than 10 rounds in any gun". The result was a grassroots boycott, still in effect by some who hold the late Bill Ruger partially responsible for portions of the Assault Weapons Ban of 1994.