Michael Helms (he/him/his) is a firearms historian, author, journalist, and enthusiast based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
He holds a degree in history from North Carolina State University, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa, Summa Cum Laude, and top in his class. Mike’s thesis was titled “Smith & Wesson: America’s First Modern Firearms Enterprise.” In it, he argued that Smith & Wesson was one of the first American enterprises to exemplify the principles of the modern enterprise that Alfred D. Chandler Jr. described in his groundbreaking book The Visible Hand.
Mike’s intense focus on Smith & Wesson’s first five years of operation have made him one of the leading experts on the company’s seminal Model 1 revolver, and he is currently authoring a full-length book on the gun’s development, manufacture, and rise as one of America’s most important firearms.
An accomplished public speaker and exhibitor, Michael has displayed and presented his research to the following organizations and publications:
Mike’s work as a historian has also been bolstered by his lifelong interest in genealogy. He holds active memberships in the Sons of the American Revolution and the Swedish Colonial Society.
When he’s not sleuthing into the obscure nooks and crannies of America’s firearms industry, Mike enjoys woodworking, photography, and doing whatever Zeke (his American Staffordshire Terrier) tells him to do (which usually involves outings in his favorite Jeep).