Confederate D-Guard Knife

Crude but eliminatory this D-Handle Knife would have been carried by a Southern soldier. It would have been the perfect utilitarian tool around camp as well a fine fighting blade. Due to its size and weight the Knife would have been used to cut there way through corn fields, clear small branches off trees and the perfect tool for eating and protecting yourself if necessary.

D-Guard Knife
D-Guard Knife

Measuring an overall length of 18.5” this D-Guard knife would have been an easy blade to handle and carry on those long marches not weighing down the user. It’s documented in many letters, diaries and dispatches that Southerners would toss there knives to the side of the road due to them being bulky in size and heavy in weight.

This unmarked clip point D-Guard was probably made by a blacksmith who used a rasp as the blade. There are still impressions of the rasp/file on portions of the center ridge spine of the blade. The handle is 5.5” and the blade is 13” long, it has a ferrule at the base of the grip and a finely shaped quillon.

Unlike most D-Guards that have a large rounded knucklebow or guard this knives guard is very close to the wood grip handle barely allowing room for your fingers. The D-Guard knife is extremely well balanced which is a credit to the makers skill. It does have a false edge and it’s sharpened on both top and bottom. It was designed to kill.

There are remnants of gold paint around the deep crevasses near the ferrule, ricasso, and tang suggesting that this may have been a war trophy brought North after the war and displayed at a GAR Hall, which is not uncommon for Confederate weapons.

Hope you’ve enjoy viewing my knife as much as I do owning it. If you have any questions about this D-Guard knife or any of the other items in my arsenal feel free to contact me at civilwararsenal@yahoo.com attn: Gene West.
I’m always looking to grow my Civil War collection if you have any Southern weapons and are looking to sell them give me a shout maybe we can make a deal.

Confederate D Handle Bowie Knife

It’s a Saturday afternoon and I’m sitting around the house bored so I’ve decided to write about one of the many weapons in the Civil War Arsenal.

A year or two ago I was at a Civil War show with my wife walking around looking at all the neat stuff laid out amongst all the tables not really seeing anything that jumped out at me and said buy me NOW. After one complete pass at the show that must have taken about 2 hours to complete I started my second pass knowing I must have missed at least one neat item.

I came across a fellow who had about 4 or 5 confederate knifes, and there it was the D Handle that said LOOK AT ME. This knife was stunning it had all the features I look for when purchasing confederate knifes, minus the scabbard.

Beautiful hardwood handle with knots in it, blackened metal blade, sturdy well made knife with a wonderful rasp/file blade that is just a work of art in itself. I must have spent an hour looking at this knife trying to walk away but it wouldn’t let me. It’s like the knife was talking to me saying take me home.

So I finally pulled myself away from the table only to be brought back time after time. It was like a magical spell had been put on me. Earlier I spoke to the fellow who was selling the knife (unfortunately I forgot his name) and he told me the price, which was a fair price but these days I tend to be more of a value shopper when making big purchases.
So I made him what I thought was a fair offer and after going back and forth with him for about ten minutes we finally agreed on a price.

This spear point D Handle has an overall length of 19” with a 14 ½” blade and a 4 ½”handle the blade is 2 1/4” wide at its widest point and it weighs 1 ½ pounds. The blacksmith or mechanic that made this knife was extremely skilled. The knife 150 years later is straight as an arrow, very sturdy and the D Handle doesn’t move like so many D Handle Knives I’ve handle over the years.

It’s my opinion this knife had a leather scabbard that probably rotted to the point that someone tossed it thinking there was no value in salvaging it, bummer I wish it was saved. Based on my research this knife was assembled in the Carolinas or Georgia but I’m sure that others may challenge that opinion. Either way this is a neat knife and I hope you enjoy the photos. Any questions about this knife please contact me at civilwararsenal@yahoo.com attn: Gene West

Confederate Bowie Knife and Tin Scabbard

The Civil War Arsenal is proud to introduce to its ever growing collection this early version of a Confederate D Handle Bowie Knife with Tin Scabbard. More than likely manufactured early in the war probably 1861 or 1862 this is a fine example of what a Southern soldier would have carried to defend against the Northern aggressors.

When war broke out in 1861 the South was woefully ill equipped to fight against the industrious North so many of the Southern soldiers armed themselves with fighting knives made by capable craftsman. Blacksmiths, carriage makers and tin smiths were just a few of the professions that answered the call to arm the Southern army. While some of these knives were functional, some were poorly constructed and not very aesthetically pleasing. That is not the case with this knife.

This knife was made by a skilled craftsman. There are many flaws throughout the blade but that only adds to the character of the knife. The blade is well executed and the knife balances properly. Many of the knives this size were heavy with thick blades and were a chore to carry on long marches. This blade while heavy enough to serve its purpose wouldn’t wear the soldier out during long marches.

It has a simple turned wood handle made of hardwood, probably walnut. The tang is peened over the D guard and is undisturbed. The overall length is 20 ¾”, blade length is 16 ¼” and blade width is 1 ¾”.

Scabbards for Confederate knives are quite rare since most were made out of leather and didn’t far well over the past 150 years. This scabbard is made of tin which is scarcer than a leather scabbard.

Construction of this scabbard is a work of art. The lead soldier on the seams is evident and holds well to this day. Made of two pieces of tin, front and back with the tip added to the body probably because the maker didn’t have a single piece long enough to cover the knife. The belt loop is still in place, which is quite rare as well.

This D handle was in the private collection of Lee Hadaway who is the author of “The Updated Confederate Bowie Knife Guide”. He is the leading expert on Confederate D handle Bowie knives and side knives.

I am proud to have this Confederate D Handle Bowie Knife as one of the many center pieces of my ever growing Civil War collection.

Enjoy the photos.