The Auction at Graceland•January 6, 2018
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 1/6/2018

In 1896, Colt introduced the “New Police” revolver which was a small frame, double-action revolver with swing-out caliber cylinder that held six rounds. The New York City Police Commissioner, Theodore Roosevelt, chose this model to be the first standard issue firearm for the NYPD in 1896. The competition from Smith & Wesson coupled with changing market demands pushed Colt to improve the New Police model with the addition of an internal hammer block safety device. This improved model was dubbed the “Police Positive” in 1907. 

Offered is a Colt Police Positive .32 caliber revolver that belonged to Elvis. His fascination with law enforcement and his passion for firearms led to his ownership of this model, which benefited from the added customization of an ivory inlaid grip by Edward H. Bohlin. Swedish-born Ed Bohlin found his way to America in 1910 at the age of 15 and ended up at a saddle shop in Cody, Wyoming. Ed met the silver screen cowboy Tom Mix in Hollywood and remained in Los Angeles, founding the Edward H. Bohlin Company, a Western-style silversmith known for flawless workmanship. The company had its heyday in the 1930s when the Hollywood cowboys were all the rage, and its quality products were second to none, employing only the finest silver and leather workers. That intricate craftsmanship is on full display in this ornate ivory and silver inlaid grip. This stunning work of artistry was owned by Elvis, who not only had a great respect for law enforcement but a passion for firearms that likely began in his early days in the military. 

This exquisite example, with carved barrel and body, is serial number 148735, dating it to the 1922 manufacturing year for the Colt Police Positive model. The base of the handle contains the inscription “INLAID BY E.BOHLIN / HOLLYWOOD.” This striking revolver was gifted by Elvis to Tom Hulett who, with Colonel Parker, managed Elvis’ live performances in the 1970s. Included is a letter that recounts the acquisition of the firearm from Tom Hulett that states in part: 

One of the items I picked up from Tom Hulett at this time was an extensively engraved handgun. Not knowing anything about firearms at the time, I learned much later it is a .32 caliber Colt revolver with ivory inlaid grips, heavily engraved by a famous Hollywood engraver named Ed Bohlin. Tom simply stated that Elvis had told him it was from “the time when I was doing movies.” I figured Elvis might have acquired it when he was filming “Love Me Tender” or “Flaming Star.” At that time I hadn’t even seen all of Elvis’ movies yet, including “Wild in the Country” and “Charro!”, and I certainly had no idea that Elvis suffered from a fairly severe form of gun collecting mania, amassing a wide variety of all kinds of firearms over his lifetime. 

This ornate Colt Police Positive revolver measures 5 by 8 1/4 inches (12.7 x 20.96 cm) and is also accompanied by an appraisal from the Chicago Appraisers Association and a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.

The revolver presents in working order, although has not been fired in some time. There is a small chip in the inlaid grip. Excellent condition.
Elvis Presley Owned 1922 Colt “Police Positive” .32 Caliber Revolver with Ornate Engraving and Ivory Inlaid Grip by Edward H. Bohlin - Gifted to Tour Promoter Tom Hulett
Current Bidding (Reserve Has Been Met)
Minimum Bid: $2,500.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $20,000.00
Estimate: $5,000 - $10,000
Number Bids: 19
Auction closed on Saturday, January 6, 2018.
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