Elvis Presley’s Smith & Wesson 19-2 and Colt Python Up for Sale

These revolvers were commissioned by Elvis Presley as gifts for special occasions. (Photo: RIA)

The Rock Island Auction Company, or RIA, is showcasing two amazing one-of-a-kind revolvers, a Smith & Wesson Model 19-2 and a Colt Python commissioned by none other than music legend Elvis Presley.

And while factory models of these guns still stand out today, these two are truly unique. Both have an amazing 95 percent custom engraving by Friedrick Wilhelm Heym Co. of Germany, consigned by the King himself.

“It is with this immense significance that Rock Island Auction Company is proud to present Elvis’ revolvers and other significant pieces of memorabilia,” states the announcement. The handguns will be showcased in their May 2017 Premiere Firearms Auction.

Both revolvers have elaborate leaf and vine scrollwork engraving with gold leaf inlays and silver bordering. They also feature raised North American wildlife on the frames. Bear, elk, buffalo and mountain lions adorn both guns. The Smith & Wesson has custom black grips with gold inlay while the Colt sports ivory-hued grips with black scrimshaw-style inlay.

These guns are as storied as they are beautiful. Presley commissioned the Smith & Wesson in 1970 for a special occasion.

“Not a square inch of this gun was left undecorated, a feat not unsurprising to those familiar with Elvis’ style during that time,” tells RIA. “Once completed, he brought the Smith & Wesson along on a trip to Washington D.C. and presented it to Vice President Spiro Agnew that same year.”

“Unfortunately for Agnew, he was only able to keep the presentation revolver for a short period of time before returning it as he was under investigation for corruption, which would eventually result in his resignation and other penalties.”

It wouldn’t take long for Presley to find a home for the meticulously decorated handgun. Not too long after a local sheriff, Gene Barksdale, did Elvis a small favor. He shuttled a group of friends from a stranded airport to Presley’s home in Graceland.

The two started talking guns when Presley stopped Barksdale and said, “Well, sheriff, I got something for ya.” Barksdale would later pass the revolver on to his nephew who added it to this collection.

See Also: Shoot-out: Colt Python vs. Smith & Wesson 686

The Colt has a more personal story. It was commissioned as a gift for Richard Grob, the Director of Security and Operations for Elvis Presley Enterprises. Grob was a close friend to Presley and the two went shooting regularly.

“Grob worked for Presley from 1967 until his death in 1977 and in that time became a close personal friend and confidant. He advised the King on many of his firearm purchases and frequently accompanied him to firing ranges.”

Included with the collection is a jeweled sheriff’s deputy badge and the contract of sale for Graceland. Elvis purchased Graceland for $102,500 when he was 22. Other documents provide provenance for the handguns along with other “Memphis Mafia” memorabilia.

To see the entire May 2017 Premier Firearms Auction head over to Rock Island Auctions.

About the author: Max Slowik is a writer with over a dozen years of experience and is a lifelong shooter. He has unwavering support for the Second Amendment and the human right to self-defense. His ambition is to follow Thomas Paine, as a journalist by profession and a propagandist by inclination.

{ 16 comments… add one }
  • Dan March 24, 2017, 3:14 pm

    Thanks Max, those items and others from Elvis will be posted by this weekend for viewing in our catalog.

  • TTLB March 24, 2017, 1:08 pm

    I usually don’t get involved in these types of conversations. I am not an engraver or artist of any kind, but I have enjoyed examining engraved guns since the mid 70s and in my opinion the work on these 2 revolvers is TOP NOTCH. On inlay work, the bottom of the engraving is dovetailed and the precious metal is gently tapped into the engraving. The dovetail keeps the gold, silver, etc. from falling out. Notice how the curved lines of the silver work flow so smoothly. There are no jagged lines or sharp turns. You can’t erase an oops in steel. The animals were done wonderfully as well. These revolvers might be gaudy to some, but to me they are truly works of art.

  • gfntxs March 24, 2017, 10:26 am

    No matter what you may think of them they belong back at Graceland on display with the rest of his things. They are a part of history that should belong to the public.

  • mcFoo March 24, 2017, 9:53 am

    Nice story- I think you all missed one of the most important points. Remember a day when you could (without much thought or care at all), travel to another state with a handgun and…. no hassle? IIRC, about that time too you could simply mail order a gun.
    And it is a wonder that we all did not massacre ourselves and end life as we know it, because we did not have the heavy protection of our government leaders protecting us from ourselves, right? what a joke.

    • mcFoo March 24, 2017, 9:56 am

      Also- I think the main reason Spiro had to give the SW back is because he and Elvis did not complete the handgun transaction through a licensed FFL, run a DROS and wait the specified period. Oh the travesty!

  • krinkov5.45 March 24, 2017, 9:13 am

    Fits Elvis… Tacky & Weird.

  • Joe Turner March 24, 2017, 9:06 am

    I remember this elaborate article that Elvis only used and carried a Walther PPK inscribed “TCB” (Taking Care of Business), dont know what these 2 gaudy revolvers are about.

  • flintman50 March 24, 2017, 9:05 am

    ’57 chevy, apple pie and the “king” and his colt…..what more does one need….God Bless USofA!

  • TonyJD March 24, 2017, 8:55 am

    Weird. I love Elvis, and I love Colt and Smith revolvers. But those two monstrosities are as attractive as the King’s Flying Nun- sized collar on his white jumpsuit.

  • Mike D. March 23, 2017, 1:36 pm

    OK, so not all Colt Pythons are good looking…

    • Mike March 24, 2017, 7:52 am

      Kinda agree. But it does has some cool significance.

    • John Murphy March 24, 2017, 8:01 am

      This click bait loser wouldn’t know the difference between a beautiful gun and a bag of smashed a**holes. Nice selfie though…….Dork! Lol!

    • Glenn61 March 24, 2017, 8:59 am
    • LJ March 24, 2017, 9:05 am

      I’ll have to admit, at least in my opinion, their are definitely a little gaudy, but the historical value would be considerable. I have no doubt they will bring a premium price!

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