A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

The first Robeson knives were imported by Millard Robeson from England and Germany exclusively. This continued from 1979 until 1896 when Robeson began manufacturing knives in the United States. Since inception, the company has gone through several reorganizations & eventually ended up as a Queen Cutlery brand.
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A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby RobesonsRme.com » Thu Oct 31, 2013 1:00 am

The various tang stamps used by The Robeson Cutlery Company apparently fall into fairly well defined time periods. Like the tang stamps used by the Case cutlery companies, Robeson's tang stamps were used for certain periods of time, then replaced by newer, but different designs.

Robeson's stamps have traditionally been divided into periods of time that included those from the early 1890's to about 1900, 1900 to about 1945, 1945 to 1965, and 1965 to 1977. These time period estimates were provided initially by Mr. Dewey Ferguson in Romance of Collecting Cattaraugus, Robeson, Russell and Queen Knives, 1976. These estimates served me well during the earlier years of my collecting.

As I have stated earlier, the best reference on all things Robeson is Knives Can Talk, by Tom Kalcevic and most recently Robeson Collectables and Rarities, 2012. Mr. Kalcevic resides in the Avon, New York. He has had access to former factory workers, factory documents, the spouse of Emerson Case, Robeson's last president, and City Directories in the local libraries. Tom's breakdown and dating of the various stampings used by Robeson is the most detailed in existence. I have chosen to accept, by faith, what Tom has published.

I do have one or two marks that were not included in Tom's books, and I have dated them in with his dates, where they seem to fit as best as I can determine.

I do not possess a representative example of every tang stamp known to have been used by Robeson. I will provide a photo of any tang stamp that I can, however.

The different lines of a tang stamp will be separated by a forward slash /, with a space preceding and following. Different styles of lettering will be described within parentheses. Arched stamps will be designated as such within parentheses. Straight stamps will be as they appeared on the knives.

I am going to limit this to the tang marks on the master blades of folding knives. If I depart from that, it will be noted.

Attempting to date a Robeson knife by the stamps on the secondary blades is futile. Some premium knives do have the same stamp on all blades, so obviously my last statement is not exactly true. However, Robeson generally placed on of only three or four stamps on the secondary blades, while the master blade went through dozens of stamps over the years.

Here are the stamps, in chronological order as Tom Kalcevic and I understand them. The dates should be considered as close estimates only and not written in stone.

M. F. ROBESON (Seen only on razors, thus far) 1880 - 1884

ROBESON / CUTLERY Co / ENGLAND 1885 - 1890

ROBESON / CUTLERY Co. with GERMANY on one blade 1891 - 1895

ROBESON / CUT. Co. with PREMIER on one or more blades 1891 -1895

R. C. Co. with GERMANY on one blade 1891 - 1895

GENESEE 1891 - 1895

FILLMORE / CUTLERY / Co. with GERMANY or AUSTRIA on one blade 1891 - 1895

ROBESON / CUTLERY CO. / WARRANTED 1896 - 1899

THE / ROBESON / CUT. CO. / ROCHESTER, N.Y. 1896 - 1899

THE R. C. CO. / ROCHESTER 1896 - 1899

ROBESON / CUTLERY 1896 - 1899

ROBESON (arched up) / CO. / CUTLERY (arched down) 1900 - 1910

ROBESON (arched) / CO. / CUTLERY 1900 - 1916

R. C. / CO. 1900 - 1939

ROBESON / CUT. CO. / U.S.A. 1910 - 1920

ROBESON / CUTLERY / CO. 1910 - 1921

ROBESON (arched) / ShurEdge (script & diagonal) / ROCHESTER, N.Y 1907 - 1911

TERRIER / CUTLERY / ROCHESTER, N.Y. 1910 - 1916

ROBESON / ShurEdge (script) / ROCHESTER, N.Y. 1911 - 1921

ROBESON / DEMONSTRATOR 1911 - 1939

ROBESON / ShurEdge (script) / U.S.A. 1916 - 1939

ROBESON (arched) / U. S. A. / CUTLERY on master blade 1917 - 1939

ROBESON / CUTLERY / ROCHESTER 1917 - 1939

ROBESON / ShurEdge (script) / ROCHESTER 1922 - 1939

ROBESON / SHUREDGE ( block) / U.S.A. 1940 - 1964

ROBESON / pattern number / U.S.A. 1965 - 1977
Attachments
RobCutCoGermanyStamp.jpg
1891 - 1895
RobCutCoAmericaStamp.jpg
1895 - 1899
PremierStamp.jpg
Found on some older knives made in Germany and Camillus, N.Y. by Sherwood
FillmoreStamp.jpg
1891 - 1895
TheRobCutCoStamp.jpg
1896 - 1899
RobesonCutleryStamp.jpg
1896 - 1899
DoubleArchStamp.jpg
1900 - 1910
RobesonCoCutleryStamp.jpg
1900 - 1916
RobCutCoUSAStamp.jpg
1910 - 1920
RobCutCoStamp.jpg
1910 - 1921
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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby RobesonsRme.com » Thu Oct 31, 2013 3:07 am

More:
Attachments
RCCOStamp.jpg
1900 - 1939
RobesonCutleryUSAStamp.jpg
1917 - 11939
SlantShurEdgeStamp.jpg
1907 - 1911
TerrierStamp.jpg
1910 - 1916
TerrierLogo.jpg
Terrier logo found on most, but not all Terrier knives
TerrierLogo.jpg (21.19 KiB) Viewed 8692 times
RochesterNYStamp.jpg
1911 - 1921
DemonstratorStamp.jpg
1911 - 1939
ShurEdgeScriptUSA.jpg
1916 - 1939
RobesonUSACutleryStamp.jpg
1917 - 1939
RobesonCutleryRochesterStamp1.jpg
1917 -1939 This was used on knives made at the Mount Morris, N.Y. plant built during WWI
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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby RobesonsRme.com » Thu Oct 31, 2013 3:10 am

The rest:
Attachments
RobesonShuredegeRochesterStamp1.jpg
1922 - 1939
BlockUSAStamp.jpg
1940 - 1964
Post1965Stamp.jpg
1965 - 1977
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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby junebug » Thu Oct 31, 2013 3:17 am

AWESOME! 8)
THANK YOU, for all the TIME and RESEARCH EFFORT,Charlie ::handshake::
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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby stockman » Mon Aug 17, 2015 8:53 pm

Thanks for the tang stamp info!!

Harold

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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby btrwtr » Mon Aug 17, 2015 11:21 pm

Great information and thanks for posting Charlie.

Here is a M. F. Robeson razor I have.
Attachments
DSC08356.JPG
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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby RobesonsRme.com » Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:37 am

Wayne, that's a nice old razor.

Is there a country of origin on it, such as Germany?

Some of the M.F. ROBESON marked razors were made in Germany and some were made here, presumably in New York.

I have a very similar, if not identical, razor with that same awesome etch.

They also made one in that same time period that was etched, "OUR BEST".

Thanks for posting.

Charlie Noyes
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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby Joe58 » Thu Aug 27, 2015 8:01 pm

Thank you muchly for posting that. Really helps a relative newby at collecting the older traditionals, such as myself, narrow down years of manufacture.

I was able to determine my old Robeson eureka ended in 1939. I didn't think it was that old. Perhaps I shouldn't carry it. Can't help it though, it's one of my favorites.

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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby jmh58 » Mon Feb 08, 2016 5:34 pm

Thanks Charlie.. Picked up a EO bone last yr.. Dug it out the other day, gave it a sharpening, and dropped it in the pocket.. Now come to find the tang stamp is 1916-1939!! KOOL!!! ::tu:: ! John :D
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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby jjwgcollectibles » Sat Oct 15, 2016 5:14 pm

I have a Robeson 1896 to 1899 my number gave me a little problem ..but i am hoping i understand it better now. my number is C73284 and here is an image or 2 of the knife .. i would like to know what model it is since it has a boot hook on it ?
PB140649aaa.JPG
PB140650aaa.JPG
PB140656.JPG

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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby RobesonsRme.com » Mon Oct 17, 2016 12:21 am

Your little knife has rose colored genuine pearl handles, so the "C" as the first character of the pattern number is a curiosity.
Early on, the "C" stood for celluloid.

Also, the second character of the pattern number denoted the number of blades. Obviously, your knife does not have seven blades.

However, "7" was the character that denoted genuine pearl handles.

So, If we ignore the "C", I read your pattern number as 732084.

Robeson often dropped the zero from the fourth position on knives whose handle-die shape number was 001 through 099.

I assume that "C" must have something to do with the special dye job of the pearl handles.

I have an identical knife with rose pearl, but unfortunately, mine has no pattern number and it is a little later than yours.

The pearl on yours is somewhat faded or bleached out.

I've seen these with four blades, as well.

The hook is a glove hook for fastening ladies gloves, as these knives were meant for women.

Charlie Noyes
Attachments
ThreeBlade2B.jpg
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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby jjwgcollectibles » Tue Oct 18, 2016 1:01 am

Charlie,
Thank you for all of your help ...is it possible the hook was also for boot laces as well..the high boots they used to wear ..only reason i ask is i used it in my ad copy as boot lace hook although i probably need to let people know it is a ladies knife ...
thank you so much again
bsafe
joe G

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Re: A Historical Perspective On Vintage Robeson Tang Stamps

Postby RobesonsRme.com » Tue Oct 18, 2016 1:32 pm

I think the knives are a bit too dainty to be used to button boots or shoes.

We have a button hook on the dresser in our guest bedroom and it is much more substantial than these knives.

That opinion, though, probably does not matter to the average Ebay knife bidder.

Charlie
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