It Happened On July 6, 1947...

The AK-47 goes into production in the Soviet Union

The AK-47 is a selective fire, gas operated 7.62mm assault rifle developed in the Soviet Union by Mikhail Kalashnikov. Six decades later, the AK-47 and its variants and derivatives remain in service throughout the world. It has been manufactured in many countries and has seen service with regular armed forces as well as irregular, revolutionary and terrorist organizations worldwide.

Design work on the AK began in 1944. In 1946 the rifle was presented for official military trials, and a year later the fixed stock version was introduced into service with select units of the Red Army (the folding stock model was developed later). The AK-47 was officially accepted by the Soviet Armed Forces in 1949. An early development of the design was the AKS-47 (S—Skladnoy priklad), which differed in being equipped with an underfolding metal shoulder stock.

The AK-47 was one of the first true assault rifles and, due to its durability, low production cost and ease of use, the weapon and its numerous variants remain the most widely used assault rifles in the world — so much so that more AK-type rifles have been produced than all other assault rifles combined. It was also used by the majority of the member states of the former Warsaw Pact. The AK-47 was also used as a basis for the development of many other types of individual and crew-served firearms.