Terrible pictures but I wanted to share this. This knife was in my Dad's estate. Regrettably there are no identifiable markings. One family story says he had it in WWII. All Dad ever said to me about it was he had some guy make it and the sheath for $20 " a long time ago". I have not tried to clean it up. I'm kind of afraid to anyhow. The handle is tight, some of the decorative rings on it are worn through. The blade is sharp. The sheath is pretty worn. It was definitely carried. Dad passed away at 90 last June. I have many items from him including a bring back Walther P38, a 1956 Marlin 39A and many of his tools. I wish I knew the rest of the story on this knife.
Sorry about the flash! Took one with and one without, neither are close to stellar.
It could well be what is termed a "Theater Knife" of WWII vintage.
The decorative butt cap is pretty non-typical for them though.
What is it supposed to be anyway?
As for Theater Knives?
The term Theater Knife was coined by collectors after WWII, and used to describe knives made by soldiers, sailors & airmen, or civilian hobbyists, and sent to the GI’s overseas in the Pacific or European Theater of operations.
Or, it could just be a hunting knife made in somebodys garage?
Regardless, it is a nice looking knife.
The sheath can be fairly closely & easily reproduced by a leather craftsman if it finally gives out.
(As long as there is enough left of it to use as a pattern for a new one.)
November 11, 2012, 03:17 PM
RC, I am not sure I understand your question about the buttcap but here is another shot. The handle is some kind of horn.
It may be WWII vintage, I can't confirm or deny it was carried there. The garage theory is more plausible to me as Dad never actually told me he carried it then. Dad spent those years as a tec 5 ambulance driver (among other things) chasing Patton across Europe.
lots of thing are acquired and given to ambulance driver, some are just plane left/forgotten
November 11, 2012, 04:17 PM
The pommel looks like a piece of crown stag that has been sanded and smoothed.
November 11, 2012, 04:38 PM
I agree its crown stag.
The two handle spacers probably are too, in addition to the leather and aluminum washers.
I was confused as the butt cap looked like a cast brass Gila Monster head or something in the first photo's. :D
November 11, 2012, 06:05 PM
I thought the same thing RC.
The grip is probably stack leather and aluminum washers with stag being the two lighter sections and a crown stag pommel.
I'd not worry about the WWII connection if your dad didn't tell you he carried it in the European Theater. It is still a very interesting antique that was made for your father when he was a younger man.
Do NOT try to clean it up too much. A little lite oil and some elbow grease with a terry towel is as far as you should try to go.
November 11, 2012, 10:07 PM
Interesting knife. Maybe my imagination but the blade looks like a large pocket knife blade with a notch on the top for opening the blade out of the handle. I've never seen a pocket knife with a ? 5 inch blade, but what do I know!:) Anyway, a knife with character for sure!
November 12, 2012, 12:25 PM
Take the knife out of the sheath. Clean it up as suggested, and enjoy it. If you plan on carrying it anywhere, even if just in honor of your father, have a new sheath made for it.
It is an heirloom, and has no really appropriate valuation as such. You father lived for 90 years, so this could have been made, literally, "long ago". Keep it to remind yourself, and your progeny of the men who have left us.
November 12, 2012, 12:49 PM
Interesting knife. Maybe my imagination but the blade looks like a large pocket knife blade with a notch on the top for opening the blade out of the handle. I've never seen a pocket knife with a ? 5 inch blade, but what do I know! Anyway, a knife with character for sure!
thats the Fuller (AKA "blood groove"), its designed to reduce the weight of the blade while still keeping it strong (think of an I-Beam)
November 12, 2012, 01:56 PM
November 12, 2012, 05:44 PM
It reminds me very much of a fixed blade navaja.
November 13, 2012, 06:00 AM
Thanks for the comments. To me it's a simply a great memento. I may do a bit more digging about the history to see if anyone else in the family has more info.
My impressions are it's somewhere between 60 and 70 years old. It shows honest wear and I know up to his last days it was on his nightstand until a home care provider moved it to a drawer. She was "afraid of it". He realized it was moved and had a fit. I put it back on his nightstand.
Edit: I realize the thread title is sort of misleading. We knew he had this knife but it disappeared for the last few months during the house cleaning and estate sale. I was afraid it had walked off. We uncovered it during the last of the packing last week. I am really glad to have it.
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