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Question about WWII US MARINE CORPS Utility Pocket Knives

Started by tsellati , Jul 12 2010 05:09 PM

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#1 tsellati

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 05:09 PM

How does one tell whether a particular WWII US MARINE CORPS Utility Pocket Knife was made by Camillus or another company? Does it depend on whether the can opener is on the same end as the primary blade or the opposite end? Or should the clevis be stamped Camillus instead of Kingston or something else?

Thanks for the education.

Tim

#2 bayonetman

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 05:44 PM

According to all the references that I have, only two companies made the WW2 stainless steel 4 blade pocket knife Knife, Pocket, General Purpose (ancestor of todays MIL-K 818). These were Kingston (a "paper" company which was the joint production of Imperial and Ulster), and Stevenson Manufacturing of Rochester, New York.

Kingston had both USMC and Army contracts, while Stevenson had only an Army contract. So all U.S. Marine Corps marked knives are made by Kingston. Early ones are like the one in the photo, with the screwdriver blade on the same end as the Master blade, while later ones had it on the opposite end like the MIL-K 818. Some are marked Kingston on the bail/clevis/shackle (take your choice) while others are unmarked. As far as I can see, the Army version (which is later than the Marine) all had the screwdriver blade on the opposite end to the Master.

Camillus did not make these in WW2. They did some work with them in 1949 but apparently did not actually furnish any to the military. The earliest of the MIL-K 818 knives were made by Camillus in 1957, although in my experience that date is relatively hard to find.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v97/bayonetman/Knives/Pocket/DSC00001.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v97/bayonetman/Knives/Pocket/DSC00001-1.jpg

#3 tsellati

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 07:46 PM

Wow, then I dodged a bullet earlier tonight. I almost bought a Kingston made knife mistakenly thinking it might have been made by Camillus. At least for now, I want to restrict my pocket and fighting knife collecting to Camillus made edged weapons. So, I guess a U.S. Marine Corps. pocket knife is one I can cross off my list.

Tim

#4 Charlie Flick

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 08:58 AM

At least for now, I want to restrict my pocket and fighting knife collecting to Camillus made edged weapons. So, I guess a U.S. Marine Corps. pocket knife is one I can cross off my list. Tim


Hi Tim:

You don't want to forget about the Camillus 4-blade utility knives made for the USMC in WW2 with the bone scales. See the attached pic of WW2 USMC folders. The Camillus blade is at the top with the USMC marking on the dog-bone shield.

Regards,
Charlie Flick

USMC_folding_utility_knives.jpg

#5 bayonetman

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 02:02 PM

Great grouping Charlie. Wish I had the top two, especially the top one!

#6 Still-A-Marine

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 05:46 PM

Nice knives Charlie. Yours are a lot nicer examples than the ones in my collection. But I was under the impression that the bone handled USMC knives are post war. Am I wrong about this? My understanding is based on the Mike Silvey article in the Oregon Knife Collectors newsletter. Bill

http://www.oregonkni...letter 0710.pdf

#7 tsellati

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Posted 14 July 2010 - 03:24 AM

Great grouping Charlie. Wish I had the top two, especially the top one!


You and me both :thumbsup: !!!

I had seen Charlie post these knives on another earlier thread and immediately got hooked on the idea of collecting pocket knives in addition to their larger 'cousins'.

I definitely am keeping an eye out for the top two.

Tim

#8 tsellati

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Posted 14 July 2010 - 03:36 AM

...I was under the impression that the bone handled USMC knives are post war. Am I wrong about this? My understanding is based on the Mike Silvey article in the Oregon Knife Collectors newsletter. Bill

http://www.oregonkni...letter 0710.pdf


Yes, based upon that article, I was under the same impression. I would snag ones if I came across them anyway as I have decided to not restrict myself to WWII era when collecting Camillus knives. I have a nice 1967 dated U.S. marked pocket knife and I have my eye on a 1967 dated Camillus Navy Pilot's knife with leather sheath and sharpening stone.

Tim

Edited by tsellati, 14 July 2010 - 03:37 AM.


#9 Catfishcraig

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Posted 14 July 2010 - 10:34 AM

According to all the references that I have, only two companies made the WW2 stainless steel 4 blade pocket knife Knife, Pocket, General Purpose (ancestor of todays MIL-K 818). These were Kingston (a "paper" company which was the joint production of Imperial and Ulster), and Stevenson Manufacturing of Rochester, New York.

Kingston had both USMC and Army contracts, while Stevenson had only an Army contract. So all U.S. Marine Corps marked knives are made by Kingston. Early ones are like the one in the photo, with the screwdriver blade on the same end as the Master blade, while later ones had it on the opposite end like the MIL-K 818. Some are marked Kingston on the bail/clevis/shackle (take your choice) while others are unmarked. As far as I can see, the Army version (which is later than the Marine) all had the screwdriver blade on the opposite end to the Master.

Camillus did not make these in WW2. They did some work with them in 1949 but apparently did not actually furnish any to the military. The earliest of the MIL-K 818 knives were made by Camillus in 1957, although in my experience that date is relatively hard to find.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v97/bayonetman/Knives/Pocket/DSC00001.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v97/bayonetman/Knives/Pocket/DSC00001-1.jpg



I found a variation of this knife and want to know what you think. I don't have a picture bur it reads "US MARINE CORPS" on the side with no other markings. the screwdriver is on the oposite side of the main blade and there is no bail attached (it looks like there never was). Have you seen this variation and would it have been Marine issued?

Thanks for the help.


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