Elvis’s Gun Has Left the Building


TTAG reader FO writes: “I enjoyed reading your article Irresponsible Gun Owner of the Day: Elvis Presley. I am the owner of the Elvis Presley Signed Application document for the gun purchased Dec. 2, 1970 which was executed at Frontier Gun Store in Palm Springs, CA. The shop is no longer in business.

“I’m writing relative to the actual Astra handgun which I am attempting to locate. It would be my intention to join the document with the gun so I thought I would reach out to you and see if you have any knowledge as to where the weapon might be, or who might own it at the present time?

“Attached is a copy of the document…any information you might have would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance for your anticipated assistance.”


  1. avatar former water walker says:

    Well THIS is interesting… thank you very much 🙂

  2. avatar MrAninnyMouse says:

    No gun registry, eh?

  3. avatar Ken says:

    It would be interesting to know how he came to possess such a document. When a FFL goes out of bidness, aren’t they supposed to forward the forms to ATF? Is there a limit on the time the FFL is supposed to keep the forms if they remain in bidness? Just askin’. Not sure I’d be making it known that I possessed such a form without knowing the answers to those questions.

    1. avatar Anonymous says:

      Yes and no. I believe it’s 20 years. If the form is over 20 years old they no longer have to keep the form. When the business closes they are required to send the forms they do have to the ATF.

      1. avatar Model 31 says:

        So in theory, data on forms for guns bought at a big box stores that are in business 20 years from now will never see the inside of a ATF building?

        1. avatar John L. says:

          There’s a big difference between “not required to keep” and “required to discard/destroy.” It will depend on exactly how the law is written, and if the former meaning, the choice the store itself makes.

    2. avatar Paul Hurst says:

      Back then the retention period for 4473 was 5 years. But it was Elvis, you know that is a souvenir for sure.

      No ID – “Is personally known to me” those were the days.

  4. avatar Leadslinger says:

    When the Frontier Gun Store in Palm Springs, CA. closed, shouldn’t this document by law been given to the ATF? The ownership of this could prove interesting legally.

    1. avatar Mike says:

      It depends on when the store closed. The requirement to have the records turned over to the ATF was part of the FOPA law from 1986.

  5. avatar Specialist38 says:

    I would imagine some guys in Jack Boots are on their way to his door to address this matter of a missing 4473.

  6. avatar jwm says:

    Elvis had all the money in the world and he chose an Astra revolver?

    1. avatar Robert Farago says:

      Col. Tom Parker kept Elvis on a tight leash — and pocketed 50 percent of everything Elvis earned. The King did not die a very wealthy man. What’s more, the terms of his will banned his estate from borrowing money. So Graceland remained a third rate attraction (in terms of revenue generation) for many, many years.

      It’s also true that Elvis had rather simple you-might-say common tastes. The Graceland you see today — a relatively modest pile — was redecorated by Pricilla after his death. Elvis’s last girlfriend had it decorated like a whorehouse in bright red.

      In short, Elvis was not the kind of guy to worry about getting the best gun possible.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        While I seem to have your attention. What’s up with ttag moderators? Got the N word popping up on Deans open carry post from the 8th and it was still there today. Got a schizo troll stalking people and contributing nothing to the conversation cept things like the N word.

        Are you stepping back and letting the inmates run things?

        1. Literally thousands of comments a month. We can’t police the entire asylum. Will look for the offending comment and zap it. Thanks.

        2. avatar Anonymous says:

          Dan. Wait a minute. I thought you, personally, read every comment. I thought there was at any given moment at least one guy huddled over a MacBook reading all these comments.

          Also, can’t you guys whip out one of your administrative tools and just search for “key” words?

      2. avatar helen sabin says:

        Elvis was a plain guy – not an elitist like most of the music performers of today! He loved life and enjoyed it but didn’t have to have the very best of everything….his house looks like something out of the 60’s……and lines line up every day to see it. Too bad he couldn’t have someone to really support him. He agonized over many things and it led to his death! TOO BAD – what a singer. Compare him to todays rappers! UGH to them!

    2. avatar pieslapper says:

      Smelled like fried banana sammidges when he shot it.

  7. avatar Ralph says:

    Elvis listed his height as 6’1″ and his weight as 160 in 1970. 160! When he died in 1977 he weighed a hundred pounds more.

    1. avatar Curtis in IL says:

      I noticed that, too.

      There’s a photo of Elvis with President Nixon in 1970 looking pretty svelte. His weight went uphill, and his health went downhill, pretty fast after that.

    2. avatar CueBaller says:

      His name is also misspelled in block #1.

  8. avatar FedUp says:

    I thought Astra had very well made revolvers?
    And Elvis’ 9 shot Cadix 22 was kind of interesting. Are those illegal in NY now?

    1. avatar sagebrushracer says:

      everything is illegal in NY, which is why nobody does anything legally there anymore.

      1. avatar helen sabin says:

        and why Hillary lives there!!

  9. avatar Chris T from KY says:

    I visited Graceland 30 years ago. I was surprised by the size of his gun collection. He also had a very big police badge collection from cities from all over the USA.

    1. avatar helen sabin says:

      That’s not on the tour today!! Was there this year……..

  10. avatar Robby says:

    “Is known to me” As I remember it that was when there was a hint of common sense in most people.
    I have told young people that was once an acceptable means of Identification on a 4473.,
    and they laughed in disbelief. What the hell happened to the world???

  11. avatar James69 says:

    A cool mystery. Will be interesting to see if anybody finds it. Imagine finding a gun elvis owned in the “junk” pile at the gunshow!

    1. avatar Swarf says:

      More likely turned into rebar at a “buyback”.

      *sad trombone*

  12. avatar jans says:

    I remember seeing Elvis’ 1911 in a case at Graceland some 25 years ago. I seem to recollect that it had ivory grips. There was also some script about target practice on the grounds using some shed/lean-to as a backstop, but details are fuzzy.

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