My book Bowie Knife Fights, Fighters, and Fighting Techniques is available from Paladin Press. This blog contains additional information about the bowie knife, as well as the fighting knives of other nations.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Knife Owned by Cassius M. Clay

I recently heard from Meredith Willis of Richmond, Kentucky, who is on the family tree of Cassius M. Clay, probably the greatest bowie-knife fighter of American history, if not as famous as Jim Bowie. Willis collects Clay artifacts, and through a trade came into possession of one of his knives. Measuring 8.5-inches overall and made in or around 1870, its blade is marked "Franz Widmann & Sohn, Munchen" and its silver pommel is engraved "Cassius M. Clay, White Hall." It was authenticated by Katherine White, the curator from the White Hall Museum, and Phil Gray, a historic weapons expert. It is not a bowie knife as we would define that term today, but may be a knife Clay presented to a friend.

I thank Mr. Willis for sharing his story and the photos of his knife. Perhaps some day someone will send me a copy of Clay's elusive manual of bowie-knife fighting!

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