Gen. Patton's SA sixgun

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Irelander
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Anyone have a good pic and spec's on Gen. George Patton's famous single action revolver?

Mak
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Ivory Handles

Patton was fond of his SAAs, but his "killing gun" as he referred to it, was his S&W registered magnum with the 3.5" bbl.
Yes, I said the plural, because Patton carried twin SAAs until the day he presented one of this pair to a USO entertainer who saved the morale of his troops. Patton was so grateful that he simply gave the guy one of his guns!
Patton was fond of Ivory stocks, and some, rather kitchy personalization. His SAA Colts were in the famous .45 Colt caliber.

Little known, Patton earned his stripes by commanding the army unit that machinegunned WW1 vets who were peacefully sitting in, and demanding their benefits they were promised as vets. He was a great, maybe the greatest American General, but his ethics left room, some might say A LOT of room, for improvement.

Chris3755
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Very True

Mak: You are so right. A lot of us are enamored of a hero or would be hero for  actions in a particular setting but we overlook those poorer qualities our "hero" may have had. I am often amazed at how many military leaders are often so against citizen firearms ownership. I think it has a lot to do with the need to control an army by chain of command etc. and ordinary citizens don't fit that mold. Not intending to criticize anybody but another one of our hero worship traits is the continual iteration (especially on TV) that only military and police personnel are properly trained to use firearms and ordinary citizens aren't trained enough to be responsible. I guess I should get off my soapbox now before I get carried away. Chris S

Mak
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Well, Chris, you're right

Supposedly, there are dozens of LEO's and Military personnel who are all over our right to keep and bear arms.
Funny thing is, where the rubber meets the road, they are always involved in rounding up, stealing, and destroying civilian arms. Look at Katrina, the last episode where both police and military were deployed. The cops themselves were looting anything of value, but they took several breaks to beat, intimidate, and force citizens to relinquish their protection. Hell, they even filmed this stuff!
Just read of a case in Ohio, where the cops stole a guy's pistol, and refuse to return it. Nope, no laws were broken by the guy who lost his gun. These days, you don't have to do anything wrong.
Maybe it would be pertinent to recall that in saner times America had no standing army, and the police was made up of Sheriffs and volunteers. Imagine that, a world where the people knew and lived the law...what a concept!

blauder
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Patton did not machine gun vets.

You should better acquaint yourselves with U.S. history before you start making accusations.
General Patton did NOT order the machine gunning of "peacefully" protesting vets. The only two deaths that occurred were when a group of them rushed 2 cornered police officers who shot in self defense.

In July 1932, Patton was executive officer of the 3rd Cavalry, which was ordered to Washington by Army Chief of Staff General Douglas MacArthur. Patton took command of the 600 troops of the 3rd Cavalry, and on July 28, MacArthur ordered Patton's troops to advance on protesting veterans known as the "Bonus Army" with tear gas and bayonets. Patton was dissatisfied with MacArthur's conduct as he recognized the legitimacy of the veterans' complaints and had himself earlier refused to issue the order to employ armed force to disperse the veterans. Patton later stated that, though he found the duty "most distasteful," he also felt that putting the marchers down prevented an insurrection and saved lives and property. He personally led the 3rd Cavalry down Pennsylvania Avenue dispersing the protesters. During the process, the 3rd Cavalry also charged directly into a crowd of civilian observers and supporters, injuring many, including Senator Hiram Bingham (R-CT) who was trampled. Under orders by McArthur (who ignored President Hoover's orders that the attack be stopped), Patton also personally led his cavalrymen on a further attack on the Bonus Army camp across the Anacostia river. One of the veterans dispersed by the cavalry was Joe Angelo, who had been Patton's orderly and saved his life in World War I. When confronted by him after the attack, Patton responded with a brusque "I do not know this man. Take him away, and under no circumstances permit him to return!" 

I kinda think this little hiccup is far outweighed by his contributions in the rest of his career. Besides, Gen. MacArthur was the one giving the orders, not Patton.

Chris3755
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I Stand Corrected!

Blauder: Thank you for dispelling the machinegun discrepancy, but as far as whether Patton was right or wrong in the incident, I think the fact that he followed dubious orders is still suspect. His later contributions to the Nation in WWII not withstanding I still don't condone his earlier actions. The word "Peaceful" was used to describe the Veteran Protest so why did Patton feel he was preventing some harm to the protest crowd? I think history has a way of mellowing the past and blending it into a smoother content more palatable to the public and that is how it will always be, people have shortcomings and often those who are our bravest have some flaw. Patton was just a man who was a warrior and that dictated his actions for better or worse and we can only look back in hindsight. On a lighter note welcome to the forum. Chris S

Mak
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Sorry, correction attempt is invalid

There were more than 2 bonus marcher deaths.The two reported in the case above occurred when the marchers attempted to commandeer an abandoned building, and this had nothing to do with extinguishing the bonus camp.
Missing from contemporary reports are the testimonies of marchers who were actually there. In order to clear the camp, the Cavalry was issued close combat weapons-Thompson SMGs and live ammo. No current account covers the actual eviction, instead glossing over the fire and chaos, and patting the so-called good guys on the back. We are all to believe that the same people the cops were shooting because they would not disperse suddenly got nice, and quietly dispersed before the troops. Such is the nature of making heroes, history is rewritten for them.

Guess someone else should better acquaint themselves with history.

blauder
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Citations required

Citation required Mak, not your opinion. Until then, YOUR post is invalid. 
I'm listening.

blauder
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Citation

The 2 deaths were a result of police attempting to disband the bonus camp.

"Against the advice of his assistant, Major Dwight
D. Eisenhower, MacArthur took personal command of the
operation. President Hoover had ordered MacArthur to clear
Pennsylvania Avenue only, but MacArthur immediately
began to clear all of downtown Washington, herding the
marchers out. Tear gas was used liberally and many bricks
were thrown, but no shots were fired. By 8 p.m. the downtown
area was cleared and the bridge across the Anacostia
River, leading to Hooverville, was blocked by tanks.
That evening Hoover sent orders via two officers
forbidding MacArthur to cross the Anacostia to clear the
marchers’ camp. MacArthur flatly ignored the President’s
orders, saying he was ‘too busy’ and could not be ‘bothered
by people coming down and pretending to bring orders.’
MacArthur crossed the Anacostia, routed the marchers,
along with 600 of their wives and children, out of the
camp and burned it to the ground. Then, incredibly, he called
a press conference and praised Hoover for taking the responsibility
of giving the order to clear the camp. [See opposite
page.] Secretary of War Furley praised MacArthur
for clearing the camp, even though he too was aware that
Hoover had given directly contrary orders.
Hoover could not publicly disagree with his Chief of
Staff and Secretary of War, and ended up paying the political
cost of this incident. The forceful eviction of the Bonus
Army, with four killed (two demonstrators shot by police
and two infants asphyxiated by tear gas), turned public opinion
against Hoover and contributed to his defeat in 1932.
In the end, some money was paid to veterans. The
Economy Act of 1933 cut veterans’ disability allowances
in an effort to cut federal expenses, but pressure continued
until a law was passed over Roosevelt’s veto in 1936.
Source: 'Hooverville, Bonus Marchers, General Smedley
Butler,' History 151, UMASS. beachonline.com/hoover.htm"

- Brian R. Train

mworkmansr
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As far as police and military competence...

In the 12 years I have been exiled in Mudhole, ms, I have only heard of one firearm accident. That was a Tunica County deputy sheriff who managed to shoot himself in the let with an M16 while getting into a vehicle. Count for yourself how many safety rules he had to break simultaneously to accomplish that:
1) Live round in chamber when entering a vehicle
2) safety not engaged
3) finger on trigger
4) pointed in unsafe direction

I still can't figure out how he managed it. Since he died as a result, I will never be able to question him. I was a "small arms specialist" in the Air Force as well as having the additional duty od Ground Safety Officer. I saw all manner of stupid trick calamities, but the deputy takes the cake and wins the cigar. Somebody was always shooting themselves in the foot by doing quick draw practice in front of a mirror with a loaded gun, and two guys even blew their testicles off by trying to show off by drawing a semi-auto out of their hip pocket. All of them ensured the future average IQ would rise since they wouldn't contribute any more idiots to the population.
My son was in the Marine as a Korean secret squirrel for some years. When I recently bought my first AR, I was considering how to sling it; one point or two. Bevan said, "Well, you can always tell the guys who use one point slings. They're the ones that limp. They shoot themselves in the foot.

Mike

Don't worry. Be happy.

Chris3755
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Ivories?

How about them "Patton  Guns" they were sure neat weren't they!! Chris S

Mak
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I get it

No problem, Chris & Mike. I get that you want the subject changed. BTW Ivory stocks always were the mark of fine firearms.

To blauder, go do some research. If you have the time to quote details in lengthy posts, you have the time to discover for yourself the record of actual testimony, and then perhaps you can discover who issued SMGs, and how they were deployed.  This way, you can do something more constructive than argue the same point ad adnauseum.

admin
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you guys.....

....are killin me....

Chris3755
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And No Picture?

And after all this we still don't have a good picture to show for the post that started this topic, sorry Irelander! Chris S

Chris3755
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Try This Link.
Chris3755
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Another Link

Here's another one. Chris S
http://www.imfdb.org/wiki/Patton

Chris3755
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I'm Done!

I am done. Chris S

mworkmansr
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Yeah, Iv'e seen 'em

I was even considering buying (bidding) on one. However, the engraving is so gaudy, and the eagle so poorly executed, that I passed it up. Bought a nice, original custom Sharps Borchardt instead.
In my humble opinion, most of the WWII generals on the Allied side except for Patton and Macarthur were dilettantes. That's what we learned at University as a synonym for pussies.  

Don't worry. Be happy.

BillW
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Bidding on what? Mworkmansr

Mworkmansr,
Are you talking about bidding on a reproduction of one of General G S Patton JRs famous revolvers, or one of the actual guns?   I have viewed both guns (SAA and S&W) on multiple occasions at the Patton (armored Calvary) museum, Ft Knox, KY.  I assume either original would bring a minimum of $300,000, if ever offered for auction.  The museum held numerous additional Personal Patton memoralia. 
I personally hold to the theory that the Generals two revolvers were, by WWII, the engrave Çolt SSA, and his killing gun S&W registered .357.  That there never was a second, or matching, Colt SAA.  He used the single SAA to dispatch Vila's officers in the punitive Mexican expedition.   I also agree with Von Rundsted, Rommel, Stalin and Hitler, that Patton was the allies most effective WWII field general.  

Mak
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Poncho Villa

Pattons' most famous account of his deployment of one SAA occurred during the U.S. incursion into Mexico. He was photographed in France during WW2 sporting twin SAAs. According to stories told by family members, Patton was no coward, and often had his half track roll up to the front. His pistols were not just for show.
The USO story was related by a war correspondent, and appeared in several accounts of the battle for France.
If someone today wonders, ivory stocks are truly wonderful. They provide a surface that has just enough purchase for a solid hold, while allowing for recoil without tearing at the hands. The spiky checkering of today's G10 stocks is a devolution, IMHO.
Yes, yes, before anyone lectures me on legal issues, I'm not advocating breaking any law, just reporting on a personal observation.
BTW, Patton did write in his diary that the USA had fought the wrong people. He wrote quite a bit more, which I won't mention, except to say he made so many enemies, there are questions if that fatal car wreck was really an accident.  

BillW
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Patton and his gunsAnd I can

Mak,  what I have read is that there are no pictures of Patton sporting two SAAs, and no record of his ever having purchased a second.  Just stories of his having presented one of the guns to someone, and prior to WWII.  If you have, or know of such a picture, please share. While not that important, it would be nice to put the rumors to rest.  There are other stories of Patton having made anti Semitic remarks during the War.   Another is that solders under his command committed atrocities, like executing prisoners.  And justifying their actions as following the generals directions and speeches.  To me, none of this is characteristic of a personally brave warrior/man. Which the general obviously was.  And You are right, there are few things as gorgeous as ivory grips on a blue steel revolver or 1911.  I have several sporting pre ban ivory grips.  Thanks, 
Bill

Mak
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I'll look

I will have to look around, but if I recall it was taken before the battle of Metz. His forces took quite a beating, and morale was at an all time low. No guarantees, I lost most of my library when my entire community burned to the ground.
Patton was human, not a God. Humans aren't perfect, yet those who view the life of America's greatest General since Lee seem to want to elevate him to an exalted status.
The military uses deadly force. We must not be surprised when deadly force is deployed to solve issues when it's politically incorrect to do so. 
Frankly, the USO event is largely anecdotal, and of little impact in the overall history. Was it a genuine event? Well, how about this, if it wasn't, it should have been.

BillW
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What USO event?

Mak,  Don't mean to continue a sore subject, but what was the USO Patton event?
Thanks,
Bill

Mak
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Presentation

I used to have a pretty decent reference library, but no longer. If somehow I manage to discover the pertinent photo, I'll of course post it. I do remember it showing Patton with a couple attache' types in his signature half track. His belt was clearly visible, sporting twin pistols. The photo was b&w.
So, the event in question occurred shortly after the photo, with the conclusion of the battle of Metz. I had personal testimony of entire companies getting wiped out. Patton spread his infantry amongst his armor, but a core of the German defense was a detachment of Paratroopers-elite soldiers, and they were incredible marksmen. You can imagine the rest.
The entertainers names escape me, but they put on a spectacular show that completely changed the despondent mood, and brought back the esprit de corps. Patton was so grateful that he presented the lead entertainer with one of his pistols.
This story is that which I referred to, above.

BillW
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My killin gun

Mak,
From the things I have read, and can not quote, that enfluences me most against the two General Patton SAA's are the descriptions of when and how the two existing revolvers were acquired, engraved, customized, etc.  Even when and where the holsters were acquired...no mention of a second Colt.  Does your information say whether the two Colts were purchased as a pair (matching)?   Again, none of this is terribly important, I just enjoy the discussion, and the chance to learn.   So if I seem to be pushing this a little too seriously, just let me know.  That would never be my intention.
Thanks again,
Bill

Mak
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Lost to History

Bill,
Quite a bit of noise is made about Patton and his big guns, but I have yet to find any definitive source on his complete pistol battery, or for that matter, how he acquired it. It seems Patton enjoyed a wide range of pistols, something I think most folks here understand.
The majority of his collection is lost and unaccounted for, but there have been some attempts to recondition similar models and match some rather scanty descriptions. Fortunately, all such attempts are straightforward, no deception intended.
I doubt it will ever be possible to fully reconstruct the history of the General's battery. For example, it's little known that Patton did possess at least one 1911, and this sported his signature ivories. He is also known to have used a Colt Officers Match, of which no record exists.
If you are interested in attempting to discover the history here, you better do it fast, because the military is changing the way they archive historic materials, and whenever one assigns the clueless to such tasks, records get lost and destroyed. For my own part, I'm done with the topic, nor do I have any interest in rebuilding my library, since I have no place to house it.
Sometimes, things just are lost in time, and sometimes it is intentional. Patton protested the starvation camps where German POWs were intentionally killed, all after the war was over.
He also protested the policy of forcing German civilians out of their homes to give them to jews, since they were never jewish homes. 
The official history is that America was the good guy, and in order to preserve this story an awful lot of the history has had to be forgotten-on purpose.
Researching history is a great way to realize the stuff you are told is little more than what a certain narrator wants to be told. Nuff said.

BillW
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I totally agree!

Mak,
Did you say your library was burned, literally?
Bill

Chris3755
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Anybody?
Mak
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Affirmative

In reference to the auction SAA, see my last post above.
In reference to Bills question, affirmative.

BillW
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The plot thickens...

Chris S.,
Fantastic.  While I was aware the general had a sizable collection of firearms, multiple visits to the museum of armored cavalry, etc., I do not remember seeing anything about this particular SAA.  I do find its use as part of a Rhett Butler costume hilarious...this must have been the Butler who survive the Civil War, in his later years?  But, if the documentation is true, and we have no reason to believe otherwise, it still leaves our questions unanswered.  Was this the supposed other SSA the general famously wore during WWII opposite his engraved ivory handled one?  If so, what gun then did he give the USO entertainer?   The sons letter seems to indicate neither of these...oh well.  But it is a great piece of six gun history.  Let me ask you guys (Mak and Chris).  I have a couple of firearms similar to the generals, one I have always called my Patton gun, would it be appropriate to do a picture forum post of these?   Thanks again Chris for the great informational post.
Bill

Chris3755
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Pictures are Welcome

I don't see any reason you can't unless you think it's not appropriate. Chris S

Mak
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Pics

If you're of a mind, pics would be great.