Antique American 19th century Civil War Bowie Knife
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Antique 19th century American Civil War Bowie Knife with one piece stag horn grip shaped near the base of the blade in the form of the head of an animal with eyes and open jaw. A long and broad blade with a clip back towards the point characteristic for Bowie type knives. There is not any makers name on the blade but the blade is stamped on the middle of the inner site Guss Stahl 20; this is not a maker name but only means a Cast Steel. This type of marking appears on 19th century knives, guns and tools. The blade of this knife is high carbon steel showing the marks of hand forging. During the 19th century the row bars of Guss Stahl (Gussstahl) were sold in USA to the blacksmiths who were then making knives and others tools. A Bowie knife is a type of fixed-blade fighting knife first popularized by Colonel James “Jim” Bowie in the early 19th Century. The Bowie knife came to be very popular and was made by the manufactures of knives and cutlery in USA, England, and Germany. The knife makers and the blacksmiths made these knives in many different styles and variations, some as a very ornate luxury weapon and some as plain fighting knives. Bowie knives were very popular during the Civil War among both sides of the war, Union and Confederacy. During the blockade of the Confederate States by the Union, many confederate Bowie knifes with long and broad clip point blade and stag horn grip had been crudely made by the Confederate blacksmiths and knife makers as combat knives, however similar types of the knives were also produced by the Union blacksmiths. REFERENCES: 1) Similar example of the Confederate Civil War Bowie knife from the collection of Smithsonian Institution’s Armed Forces Division published in the book: Civil War Knives by Marc Newman Chapter; 7 Confederate Bowie Knives and Daggers; Page 73. (Please see the attached photo in the listing) 2) American Primitives Knives 1770 – 1870. 3) Bowie Knives by Robert Abels 4) The Bowie Knife Book by Kenneth J. Burton. Another example of a similar Bowie knife was auctioned at Signature House on March 15th, 2003. Auction XXI Lot 189 Est: $2000-$3000, sold For $2,000 plus the buyers premium (almost 10 years ago). Please see the link below: http://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/30163 MEASUREMENTS: Overall length: 36.5 cm (14 3/8 in), length of the blade from the interior of the open jaw to the tip: 26 cm (10 1/4 in). CONDITION: The Bowie is in good condition considering its age. Blade slightly rusty with dark patina, however it was resharpened, most likely during 20th century. Horn hilt throughout full of scratches and nicks with natural glossy wear and patina, showing the age and usage, vertical crack on each side repaired with patches.
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- Militaria & Weapons
- 19th century
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