This crazy and incredibly complicated multi-tool was made in Solingen, Germany, around the early 1880â€™s for J. S. Holler & Co.â€™s cutlery store in New York City.
And when I mean multiple blades, I mean 100 blades, and thatâ€™s not even the craziest part.
According to the National Museum Of American History, â€œIt includes pocket knife blades of every style imaginable, a serrated blade, two dagger blades, several different types of shears and scissors, an auger, a corkscrew, two saws, a lancet, button hook, cigar cutter, tuning fork, pens and mechanical pencils, mirror, straight razor, and a functional .22-caliber five-shot pinfire revolver.
H. Clay Aalders, at the Truth About Knives, speculates on Sherlock Holmes choice of Every Day Carry knife.
A couple of weeks ago we shared a really awesome series of posts from IHearofSherlock.com. In them, the author derives a very convincing list of the Everyday Carry items carried by the iconic Detective, using clues from the texts as reference.
In the second installment of the series, the author focuses in on the knife which Holmes might have carried, and settled on a â€œWinfield Knifeâ€ from Thornhill of London.
HT: Glenn Reynolds.
Microtech knives are hideously expensive, not easy to find, probably illegal for you to own or carry, but avidly collected by macho men everywhere with a weakness for “tactical” gear.
When I saw this video featuring a giant, oversized version of the classic (if the word “classic” can possibly be applied in this particular context) Microtech Halo, I assumed all this hyperbolic rhetoric was pure satire, but, no, examples of this oversized version (which must be so illegal as to carry multiple sentences for possession) are actually on-sale*.
* for a mere $8999 shipped!
Hat tip to Vanderleun (who shares my own interests and perspective so perectly that I think he must be my evil twin).
Confession: I used to own one Microtech (not a front-opening Halo), but it was too valuable to use, and I concluded it was too heavy to carry, so I sold it.
A 6-year-old boy was attacked by a mountain lion while walking near the lodge at Chisos Basin in Big Bend National Park with his family Sunday night.
The boy suffered non-life-threatening injuries â€” scrapes and puncture wounds to his face, according to park officials.
His father was able to fight off the cat by stabbing it with a pocket knife.
Shiv disguised as a wooden crucifix; found in an inmateâ€™s cell in WolfenbÃ¼ttel prison, Germany, sometime around 1994; intended for use in an escape or as a general weapon. At that time a lot of crucifixes were fashioned in prison woodshops until jailers finally figured out their true purpose.
Who would have imagined that Knife Collecting guru Bernard Levine is a Harvard ’69 dropout, who became an expert on knives as a way of surviving in the city on the Bay back in the era of the Summer of Love?
Harvard Magazine reveals all:
In February 1969, Levine headed west, looking to connect with a love interest in San Franciscoâ€”who promptly returned east to enroll in college. He knocked about the city for a couple of years, working as a stevedore and in construction. His first job, hanging sheetrock, had five other Harvard students on the site. â€œI realized that I wasnâ€™t strong enough to do this kind of work,â€ he says, â€œand that it wasnâ€™t getting me far enough away from Harvard!â€
He tried a small business gathering wild yarrow stalks in the hills near San Francisco, which natural food stores sold in bundles of 50 because dividing piles of yarrow is a classical method of consulting the I Ching. â€œThen they found a lower-priced source,â€ Levine says. â€œThat was my first lesson in business.â€
In September 1971, a couple at the house Levine lived in invited him to come to a flea market; they were moving and had some items to sell. He went to a Goodwill store to find something he might sell at the flea market, and purchased a box of old knives for $3.00â€”30 knives, as it turned out, at a dime each. â€œI knew less than nothing about knives,â€ he says. â€œThe little I knew was wrong. But I spread my knives out on a cloth and was overwhelmed by people.â€
Levine learned that there were knife collectors, and the brand names that were collectible. â€œIt was a revelation,â€ he admits. He continued selling knives at flea markets on weekends. â€œIt turned out to be much longer hours than any job,â€ he says. â€œIâ€™d spend all week scrounging up knives and on Friday bring them to a cutlery shop in North Beach where theyâ€™d restore them for me. The grandfather thereâ€”born in Romania in 1885â€”taught me a lot about the European cutlery business in the early twentieth century.
â€œMy great love in school had been history,â€ he says. â€œOld knives are a good window into history, and a window that looks out in every direction.â€ From the very first day, Levine recorded every knife he sold, including brand markings and a description, eventually logging 13,000 entries.
Hat tip to Walter Olson.
Boy Scouts, Britain, Britain Sinking into the Sea, Corrections and Retractions, General Poltroonery, Hoplophobia, Knives, Safety Fascism
This is a bit older, slightly nicer version of the Boy Scout Knife I used to carry back during the Consulate of Plancus.
You see how these things work?
There’s a little accident, and first they come and take away your cannon. Next, before long, they won’t even let Boy Scouts carry pocket knives. The utter and complete emasculation of society is a slippery slope process.
New advice published in Scouting, the official in-house magazine, says neither Scouts nor their parents should bring penknives to camp except in “specific” situations.
Scouts have traditionally been taught how to use knives correctly, using them on camping trips to cut firewood or carve tools.
At one point Scouts were allowed to carry a sheath knife on their belt as part of their uniform although this is no longer the case. In recent years the Scout Association guidance has been that parents should carry knives to camps or meetings.
Dave Budd, a knife-maker who runs courses training Scouts about the safe use of blades, wrote that the growing problem of knife crime meant action had to be taken.
“Sadly, there is now confusion about when a Scout is allowed to carry a knife,” he wrote. “The series of high-profile fatal stabbings [has] highlighted a growing knife culture in the UK.
“I think it is safest to assume that knives of any sort should not be carried by anybody to a Scout meeting or camp, unless there is likely to be a specific need for one. In that case, they should be kept by the Scout leaders and handed out as required.”
Hat tip to Karen L. Myers.
Even farther back, before WWII, there used to be an official Boy Scout sheath knife. It seems to have been an adaptation by a different company (Ka-Bar? Camillus?) of the old Webster Marble Woodcraft pattern.
British Scouting Commissioner says story is unfair, Update 9/9:
There’s no story here, Bulpitt claims. Why! We’ve been discouraging scouts from carrying pen-knives for years.
A Mail on Sunday journalist approached us on Friday having read the latest guidance we issued in Scouting Magazine/online in December 08 and April 09 on advising Scouts on the situations in which they can use a knife as part of normal Scout Activities. He was looking to make the story into “Scouts Ban knives shocker”. The media team took them through the facts and sent them links to our various documents and magazine articles giving him the following info,
– The Rules changed about wearing knives with uniform in 1968
– We have issued regular guidance to the Movement on this matter ever since 1968 e.g. early 1980’s , 1996, 2008 and 2009 (the latest being the magazine article in April/May)
– We need to support leaders with information to help them support young people
Despite making these facts available the Mail on Sunday published the piece, They used a few selective statements and quotes some out of context..
A number of newspapers this morning (Times, Telegraph, Express, Mirror, Sun) have taken the text from the Mail on Sunday (without talking to us) and have run with the story.
I’m not especially moved by Mr. Bulpitt’s complaints personally, but I thought he was entitled to a place on the record.