Taylor’s & Company was founded by Sue Hawkins McFarland in 1988, at first specializing in Civil War-era replica firearms. It didn’t take long before avid reenactors spread word that the firm’s imported guns were of quality, somehow maintaining the fit, feel and look of those fielded during the War Between the States, yet providing the enhanced durability and safety made possible by modern manufacturing.
The company’s expansion into guns of the Old West was a natural one, quickly driven by a growing reputation. Today, its catalog continues to amaze collectors with fine-looking firearms that somehow shun the budget-killing price tags that traditionally drive average enthusiasts away.
Today the Winchester, Va.-based firm remains family-owned, with McFArland’s daughter, Tammy Loy, as owner and CEO. Loy’s daughters are also involved, bringing with them some respectful modern takes on historic firearms, along with new designs that address the needs of modern enthusiasts.
The T-Model Lever-Action Shotgun, for example, is a 12-gauge based loosely on the original Winchester Model 1887 shotgun—designed by John Moses Browning—with a 5+2 shotshell capacity. B. Gil Horman fully explains the unusual round count in his review of the gun. He also notes the design is inspired by the scene in “Terminator 2: Judgement Day,” in which, “The heroic T-101 cyborg, played by Arnold Schwarzenegger, arrives clad in black leather astride a Harley Davidson motorcycle just in time to save the day. Oozing an attitude of pure cool, the T-101 draws a pistol-grip 1887 Winchester lever-action shotgun that he cocks and fires single-handed from the moving Harley.”
Taylor’s & Company imports firearms from Italy, a nation that—despite a widespread reputation for exotic and high-tech cars—has somehow never lost touch with old-world craftsmanship. There’s a lot to choose from today, too. From its true-to-history offerings such as the 1887 shotguns, double-barrel shotguns, cartridge and blackpowder guns, Taylor's & Company has a wide range of firearms and collectibles to choose from, including gun leather, vintage optics and accessories; it’s hard to find a noteworthy revolver in Old West/Civil War history the company doesn’t offer a replica of.
Want a Sharps but not fond of taking out a second mortgage to claim one? Taylor’s & Company has more than a dozen versions available. The 1874 Sharp’s Business Rifle has a 28" octagonal barrel, is chambered in .45-70 Govt., wears a walnut stock, features a ladder sight at the rear and will set you back only $1,618.73.
It'll turn heads at the range, that’s for sure, and lives up to the Taylor’s & Company motto—“Keeping the Legend Alive.”