Nine Line is incredibly proud to be partners with SIG Sauer. The company shares our love of freedom and the same passion and pride for our country. No doubt you’ve tried a SIG Sauer product on the range or own one (or maybe two) now.

The craftsmanship and precision of SIG Sauer firearms is appreciated by military service members, law enforcement and gun enthusiasts throughout our fruited plain, but we bet there are a few things about the company even gun geeks don’t know.

Herewith are 10 fast facts about SIG Sauer you can use to impress your friends.

1. The company was originally formed in 1853 by Friedrich Peyer im Hof, Heinrich Moser and Conrad Neher in Switzerland (not Germany, as you might have imagined.

2. SIG stands for Schweizerische Industrie-Gesellschaft – the Swiss Industry Company.

3. The three founders didn’t set out to make firearms initially. Their Schweizerische Waggon Fabrik (Swiss Wagon Factory) located above the Rhine Falls in Switzerland produced railway cars and wagons.

4. The company got into firearms manufacture after the Swiss Federal Ministry of Defense launched a competition to find the next state of the art rifle design. The Swiss Wagon Factory entered the competition hoping the Swiss Army would adopt their design and award the contract.

5. In 1863, the Swiss Wagon Factory won a contract to produce 30,000 of their winning design: the Prelaz-Burnand muzzle-loading rifle, invented by gunsmith Jean-Louis Joseph Prélaz and army officer Edouard Burnand. It was adopted as the M1863 rifle.

6. In 1949, SIG began producing the P49 for the Swiss Army. This locked breech, self-loading, semi-automatic pistol, was the forerunner of the P201 which the company continued to produce until 2006.

7. By the 1970s, SIG’s small arms division expanding to include Hämmerli Target Arms from Lenzburg, Switzerland, and J.P. Sauer & Sohn, GmbH, of Eckernförde, West Germany, known worldwide for their hunting rifles. The company name was changed to SIG Sauer.

8. It wasn’t until the 1980’s that the company expanded to the U.S. with the creation of SIGARMS in Tyson’s Corner, Virginia. SIGARMS moved to Exeter, New Hampshire in 1990 where the company began manufacturing firearms in the U.S. In 1992, a separate training facility for civilians and law enforcement personnel was opened on 128 acres in Epping, New Hampshire.

9. In 2007, SIGARMS in the U.S. changed its name to SIG Sauer.

10. The SIG Sauer Academy, located just an hour from Boston in Epping, New Hampshire, is one of the most amazing training facilities on the globe. It features state-of-the-art indoor and outdoor ranges, tactical training areas, urban environments, multiple shoot houses, a maritime training area, and a force-on-force village area. It doesn’t get much cooler than that.

If traveling to New Hampshire isn’t on the cards for you right now, you can at least sport our limited edition SIG USA t-shirt design at your local range, and particularly when you’re regaling your buddies with everything you now know about the history of the SIG brand.

You’re welcome.