Consumer Products

These Are the States With the Most Gun Dealers

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) keeps track of the firearms licenses in the United States. As of last month, the figure totaled 130,525. The establishments with licenses vary considerably by state and also by the categories by which the ATF tracks them.

Federal Firearms Licenses fall into nine categories. In each case, the official name for firearms is “destructive devices.” These in turn are defined as guns or explosive devices regulated by the National Firearms Act of 1934, revised by the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 and Gun Control Act of 1968.

These are the nine categories:

  1. Dealer in Firearms Other Than Destructive Devices (Includes Gunsmiths)
  2. Pawnbroker in Firearms Other Than Destructive Devices
  3. Collector of Curios and Relics
  4. Manufacturer of Ammunition for Firearms
  5. Manufacturer of Firearms Other Than Destructive Devices
  6. Importer of Firearms Other Than Destructive Devices
  7. Dealer in Destructive Devices
  8. Manufacturer of Destructive Devices
  9. Importer of Destructive Devices

Clearly not all establishments on the list sell firearms directly to the public.

The market for guns in the United States is huge. Some estimates put the number of guns in the country at over 300 million. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), over 30 million guns have been sold in the United States this year through October. At the current rate, U.S. gun sales will set a record in 2020.

These are the number of gun dealers by state, according to the ATF:

State Total
Alabama 2,102
Alaska 834
Arkansas 1,864
Arizona 3,385
California 8,434
Colorado 2,950
Connecticut 1,744
Delaware 318
District of Columbia 33
Florida 6,991
Georgia 3,474
Guam 19
Hawaii 222
Idaho 1,506
Illinois 4,492
Indiana 2,735
Iowa 1,990
Kansas 1,771
Kentucky 2,225
Louisiana 1,943
Maine 881
Maryland 2,835
Massachusetts 3,936
Michigan 3,860
Minnesota 2,428
Mississippi 1,435
Missouri 4,225
Montana 1,495
Nebraska 1,100
Nevada 1,314
New Hampshire 1,169
New Jersey 470
New Mexico 1,023
New York 3,784
North Carolina 4,429
Northern Mariana Islands 3
North Dakota 705
Ohio 4,458
Oklahoma 2,198
Oregon 2,155
Pennsylvania 6,138
Puerto Rico 88
Rhode Island 566
South Carolina 2,101
South Dakota 758
Tennessee 3,102
Texas 10,624
U.S. Virgin Islands 13
Utah 1,488
Vermont 550
Virginia 3,969
Washington 3,130
West Virginia 1,351
Wisconsin 2,837
Wyoming 875