View Single Post
Old 10-26-2012, 10:26 AM
18DAI's Avatar
18DAI 18DAI is offline
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: GSO NC
Posts: 5,475
Likes: 17,596
Liked 9,461 Times in 2,243 Posts

On a historic note, both Charles Kelsey and Paris Theodore, the respective designers of the Devel and ASP pistols, were treated shabbily by S&W.

S&W suits actually purchased a Devel pistol. The story related to me, by someone who was there, was that the higher ups were amazed and startled by the Devel modified 59. A short time later, the 459 appeared in production. I'm told that Charles Kelsey, who was almost bankrupt, purchased a 459 and modified it too. He then sent the modified 459 back to the head of S&W at that time. Along with an "in your face" nasty gram.

Mr Kelsey never recieved any royalties or copywrites and little recognition for any of his very significant contributions to the design of modern handguns. He was a truly innovative designer and talented craftsman.

It is said that Theodore Paris went to S&W with his ASP pistol. He was in some financial straits at the time. He met with a cold reception by S&W executives. They reportedly regarded the ASP with a "not invented here" attitude. Then they copied his design, like they did with the Devel, and incorporated the features in their 469 pistol.

Its a shame that neither of these talented designers were ever given any support or credit by S&W. I sometimes wonder what pistols may have been had either Theodore or Kelsey been hired to work on the S&W semi auto pistols as Wayne Novak was in later years. Regards 18DAI
Reply With Quote
The Following 5 Users Like Post: