There is a reason some of the most valued weapons in the last 2000+ years have often had ivory handles. Ivory offers a superior grip when wet and is neutral when it comes to heat and cold. Handy on a knife or sword and as many a gunman realized early on, handy on a SAA. Ivory when compared to many natural materials is easy to work and often more durable by comparison. The tradition of ivory use on weapons goes back to the Bronze age.
African sword with a carved ivory handle (circa 1380—1420).
Prior to Chris Columbus' time frame. Fifteenth Century ivory handled dagger.
When it comes to a Colt product, Sam Colt started offering pearl and ivory grips (along with wood) almost from the very beginning of his hand gun production. The 1837 Pattersons were the first Colt's to be embellished with ivory and mother of pearl grips.
Just as high valued hand guns were offered with ivory and pearl fully 100 years before Sam Colt was born. Although much more difficult to obtain, even more expensive and no longer politically correct in some circles, the use of elephant ivory continues today on the best of Colt's work.
Besides the distinct advantages of ivory (or to lessor extend Mother of pearl) as a grip material it is a very traditional grip on any Colt firearm. The newest Resin-S synthetic, as is Micarta, similar to ivory, superior in fact by some measures, but neither is actually elephant ivory in use. Any one suggesting other wise is truly clueless.
While it my not be politically correct these days to use ivory or pearl, it is no longer politically correct to be a gun owner either. One might want to reflect on that connection for a moment prior to moving on. For various reasons much of our society had declared a 30 round mag as "bad", ARs are bad, ivory is bad. And Pearl? No one thought a big old lazy clam in the Pacific was cute enough to be worth saving?! Sure the elephants are cute. Dead elephants are not a pretty picture to explain away. Dead whales or finless sharks the same. I get it.
For those that have never held an ivory handled weapon of any sort I can only say, yes, you are missing some thing. May be ivory ownership is best missed by most these days. But make no mistake China is not a country that deems ivory ownership as politically incorrect. The Chinese were using ivory 1000 years prior to 1776 and will coninued to do so untill every wild elephant is long gone and buried. Ivory is not just a cosmetic enhancement for a Colt or a knife for that matter. Hard for me to fathom an interest in a SAA and not have an interest in the actual history of the firearm. Because that is all a SAA is, a bit of our history.
I'd rather have elephants running wild in my world than any of the ivory I own. But I am also pretty realistic and informed on how the ivory came to me and the actual reasons the elephant population is plummeting, and now the Giraffe population as well and the large shells prior, in a devastated ocean world wide.
I'd guess ivory ownership will eventually be out right banned in the future, no matter who is in the white house. Those that have never used ivory will never know the advantages or beauty of ivory. And the uneducated will continue to think that the limited bans on importation and transportation here in the USA will make a significant difference in the world wide elephant population.
Last edited by Cozmo; 02-15-2020 at 03:24 PM.
Up until early synthetics like hard rubber , Franzite and Bakelite , ivory was probably one of the most stable , durable , fairly inexpensive , and easy to carve non-wood materials suitable for gun and knife grips , and looked good to boot!
Last edited by mkk41; 02-15-2020 at 12:09 PM.
"One does not sell Colts , one buys Colts! "
Ivory on Colt SAA's. Whats not to like?