Previous firearms and airgun manufacturer established in 1856, located in Suhl, Germany.
Simson & Co. began building guns and gun barrels circa 1856, and continued its enterprise until 1936, when Hitler's dictatorship forced the Simson family to flee the country. The factory continued to build firearms, bicycles, and cars until 1945, when the Soviets took over and the factory was integrated into a Russian state motorcycle company. In 1952, the USSR returned the control of the factory to the GDR. Production of sporting arms, prams, and bicycles slowly resumed, with the main focus on motorcycle manufacture. The company struggled during the 1980s to modernize the production and the facility, but the company finally ceased operations in late 2002, and bankruptcy was declared in Feb. 2003.
Simson made a wide variety of handguns, rifles and shotguns, including some private labels. A comprehensive listing of everything Simson made would be nearly impossible, as most of its guns were not imported in the U.S. on a regular basis, and much of the company's history was destroyed after the Russians occupied Suhl after WWII. A general rule for evaluating Simson firearms is to determine the overall desirability of the configuration which takes into consideration the following - action type (boxlock or sidelock), caliber/gauge, ejectors or extractors, plain or engraved frame, special features, cocking indicators, overall eye appeal, and of course, original condition. Each Simson's unique mix of these factors determines the value, and as a result, each gun must be appraised individually. A good pricing guideline is to compare a Simson with other major European trademarks such as Heym, Krieghoff, Merkel, or Sauer determine the value on those, and use them as a comparison.