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Para USA was not always known as Para USA. It may be better known to many readers as Para-Ordnance. Ironically, the company that took the M1911 to new heights was not from America, it was from Toronto, Canada.


In the mid-1980s, many companies either made a hi-capacity nine-millimeter holding anywhere from 13 to 17 rounds in a magazine, or a lower-capacity .45 ACP, with six to eight rounds. Para-Ordnance broke the mold – offering shooters a M1911 with a 14-shot magazine. Other high-capacity versions followed, including the P13 and P12 – both of which combined the stopping power of the .45 with the volume of fire of the nine-millimeter pistols. All of a sudden, people could get the best of both worlds.


Para-Ordnance managed to survive the Clinton gun and magazine ban – and even thrived, thanks to their willingness to push the design to include a subcompact – the P10.45, later known as the Warthog.


In 2008, the decision was made to move to the United States of America. According to the Charlotte Business Journal, five cities competed, and Charlotte, North Carolina came out the winner, picking up 35-40 jobs.


Para-Ordnance also underwent a name change, becoming Para USA. One other effect of the move is that now, Para USA will be eligible for more military and law-enforcement contracts.