H Boker Factory Collection

20091023_2918To complement the recent feature article on Boker knives and the firm’s history in Knife World Magazine, here is the rare H. Boker Factory Collection displayed at Smoky Mountain Knife Works in Sevierville, TN owned by Kevin Pipes.

20091023_2929Even if you aren’t a fan of the Boker brand, if you like older knives, and pristine mint condition knives- with fantastic etches, then you’ll appreciate this collection.

The Next Generation Knife Collector Community

I want to join a knife community. I’ve looked at a bunch. Searched the web- deep and wide- and it ain’t there. Not like what I’m looking for.

What I am looking for is a combination- 24/7 Knife Show, YouTube, Flickr, MySpace, FaceBook, Yahoo Group, Cutlery News Journal and knife forum- all rolled into one, all exclusively for knife collectors. (more…)

Early American cutlery manufacturing from England’s perspective

sheffieldsteelamericaSheffield Steel And America- A century of commercial and technological interdependence 1830- 1930, by Geoffrey Tweedale.

If you enjoy learning about the early cutlery days, then here is a book you should add to your library, plus it is written by a Sheffield cutlery history expert.

I wanted this book because it discusses American cutlery history- from England’s perspective.

You will find the early steel and cutlery industries go hand in hand. Sheffield never considered the US cutlery manufacturers a threat until it was too late and by then our knife companies had captured the US market. This was about the same time America’s steel output, and quality, rivaled Sheffield’s. The combination of lack of demand for Sheffield’s cutlery and steel by America devastated Sheffield’s economy at that time as we were their largest customer for both.

Mr. Tweedale is a Sheffield cutlery expert and author of The Sheffield Knife Book. I was pointed to him a couple of years ago while researching a C & X Lockwood Brothers elephant toenail in my collection.

Don’t expect this book to be a riveting page turner, like a John Grisham novel, but it is a BUY recommendation for students of early American cutlery history.

Publisher’s overview and table of contents.

CNJ is a knife news source and online library



Cutlery News Journal is here whenever you want it. Day or night- 24/7.

Reading habits are interesting. Some of you hit the site early everyday with your first cup of java. Some of you check it during the day. I know others who work nights and check it then. Many of these folks dart in for the lead story and then dart back out.

Others come once or twice a week and spend time checking out the latest stories. Yet, others come once or twice a month reading it more like a monthly magazine- clicking different categories and related articles- following links deep into web.

While many of you have been with CNJ from its beginning, new readers are visiting daily and have yet to establish their reading pattern.

For you who have just joined us, allow me to provide a little introduction.

CNJ is a virtual library of knife collector articles and news- all easily searched by keyword, tag, category and date.

Take a quick second and scroll up and down the homepage. Notice the ride side as you do. CNJ’s functions are located there. For example, at the top of the homepage you will find the search field. The keyword search works just like Google. Enter any word and all articles are displayed with that keyword in it. Try it.

The tags are the odd looking, different sized, words all bunched together. Click on any one and all articles tagged with that word are found. Every article is also filed under one of the categories listed down the right side of the homepage. All articles are filed by month too. Plus, the actual calendar allows you to search by day of the month, if you are so inclined.

No digging through boxes for past editions

No digging in boxes for past editions of CNJ

Right now there are already 182 published articles- over 100,000 words, 517 tags and 59 categories– all archived and easily searchable.

And, we’ve only just begun to make collector news. Imagine 5  years from now!

Interestingly, none of the traditional knife magazines offer an online archive of past editions. Wouldn’t you love to search back through the last twenty years of Knife World, for example? I know I would.

Thanks for taking the time to check out CNJ. If you like what CNJ is all about- tell others. If you don’t and have suggestions- tell me.

Published in: on March 17, 2009 at 6:01 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Collecting advice from a seasoned collector

Having to experince a thing for yourself is very slow learning

"valuable lessons there are. teach yourself without having to experience"

A wise man learns from the experiences of others.

I value having the opportunity to learn from the advice of others that will save time, money and increase my enjoyment of this wonderful hobby.

Today, I want to share a short interview with collector Roger Pinnock as he shares important lessons with Dan Farr at Blademag.com

If you value learning from others without having to experience a thing firsthand, here is sound counsel for new and seasoned collectors alike.

The post is entitled- A Tour de Force of Knife Collecting. Thanks Dan for sharing Roger’s experience with us.

Published in: on March 11, 2009 at 6:15 am  Leave a Comment  
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A Tribute to Knife World Magazine

knife-world-logoWe are extremely fortunate. In the big scheme of things our world of knife collecting is but a speck in the universe of collectibles and yet, we have several monthly publications tailored specifically to our hobby.

My sentimental favorite is Knife World. I got started on it because I liked old pocket knives and to me, Knife World was the best fit. I have not been disappointed in a single issue. 

Knife World is balanced in its articles. Obviously, I lean toward Knife History- all things related to the who, what, when, where and why of the knives and the companies that made them. KW is the only pub that allows an emphasis on early American cutlery history.


If you are new to collecting, or aren’t familiar, here’s what KW is all about-

“Each month, KNIFE WORLD offers a wide variety of information about knives …new knives, old knives, military knives, custom knives, factory knives, special issue knives, knife books, and more. You’ll learn about knifemakers, knife companies, knife values, knife history, and read stories of interest to all knife enthusiasts.”

Knife World isn’t about glitz, glamor or glossy cover stock. Instead, it is about quality content. 

Mark Zalesky Knife World EditorOne of my favorite sections is Mark Zalesky’s Irons in the Fire. There he lets it all hang out. No sacred cows. All is fair game. Fortunately he hasn’t taken aim my way yet, but may well one day.


You can also go to KnifeWorld.com and do an index search. Then you can order back issues til your heart is content. In the past they have published knifeworld_2042_4126163The Best of Knife World. These are truly gems. Find them if you can. There were three editions published.

I am fortunate to have most of 20 years of issues. I love to take the time to grab a few, hop in bed and read the dusty things. The articles are timeless. And while some of the past articles are more “meaty” than others, almost all have interesting knife factoids.

When you have time read how it all got started and KW’s history.

I’m thankful to have Knife World and hope you are too.

Published in: on February 20, 2009 at 6:30 am  Leave a Comment  
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Knife History References

Since the majority of knife collectors are into traditional pocket knives, I wanted to share a list of knife books that are helpful to me when I’m deep into trying to run down some bit of knife history.  

I admit history was not my favorite subject growing up, but for many of us into old patterns or brands, we can’t help but get a little crazy about it now.

Need to check a fact or date

There are times almost all collectors need to turn back to the pages of early American cutlery history to look up a date or fact about a particular company or community.  

An old postcard picturing a burned building

Smethport Cutlery Co. June 1910

Smethport Cutlery Co. June 1910

The other day  I was looking around eBay and ran on an old post card. It pictured a burned cutlery plant in Smethport, Pa. Not sure if it was significant or not, off to my books I went.

Bingo! It was the Smethport Cutlery Co. factory and it burned on June 11, 1910. Even more significant was practically the whole Case extended family had been involved in this company.  

Jean Case, W R Case, Russ Case and H N Platts put up the money to buy the company and not long after that it burned. If you want the rest of the story, Brad Lockwood gives excellent details in The Case Cutlery Dynasty.

Thankfully, I ended up winning this prime piece of American cutlery history, but had I not been able to identify its significance, I would have passed it over.  

Reference List

Here is the list of books I have found to be helpful. They aren’t listed in a particular order, although I flagged some of my favorites. 


Is your knife collection insured?


Weekend Edition

Being broken into is no laughing matter. We have all heard nightmare stories of knife collections being stolen, either from the collector’s home or car.

I know the last thing folks want to pay for is more insurance, but if you were to need it- you’ll wish you had it. And, while I am not an insurance expert, I know that most homeowner’s policies do not cover valuables unless they are within the limits, or are scheduled in the policy, and even then probably won’t cover the knives when off the property.

Here’s what I found that may be helpful-

And while this information was taken from the insurance company I use, I encourage you to check it out for yourself.  There are firms out there that specialize in collectibles.

Insurance is one of those things- if you don’t need it, it seemed like a waste, but if you did, you were glad you had it.

Published in: on January 24, 2009 at 6:00 am  Comments (3)  
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Got Knives to Sell? What are the options today?

cnjspotlightfinalSo, you have a few knives to sell, what direction do you go? Stick them on eBay? Sell to a dealer? Or post them in a forum?

There are other options.

What if I told you there is a very established knife site where you can put your knives? 

But maybe you wanted your own website to sell through, yet either due to the expense of building it out, or lack of technical know-how, you felt it would be over your head.

 AllAboutPocketKnives.com (AAPK) may be the answer. In addition to it being well known, AAPK allows its members to have their own Knife Store. 


Knife Blog News

Online Knife News is still in its infancy today. While there are various websites with knives for sale, knife collector news sites are still new.

bloglogo_webOne of the few blogs related to knife news is Blade Blog. Not long ago, I befriended Blade Blog’s writer Ben Sobieck, well he has now moved on to another role for F&W Media.

Many of you may know Joe Kertzman. Joe has taken over the helm at their blog and is also the new managing editor of Blade Magazine.

Congrats Joe! Let’s all welcome Joe to the knife news blogosphere.

Published in: on January 13, 2009 at 10:15 am  Leave a Comment  
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