Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

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adavid02
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Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by adavid02 » Sun Feb 16, 2020 7:29 pm

I am unsure how old this is, but if my grandfather had it I’m guessing mid 1800s based on a particular ancestor he kept heirlooms of. The shape is odd in that the blade curves opposite to the way the knife is held. The blade also folds into the handle. There are three symbols on the blade, one is almost worn off. There is a name or names “George Wostenholm Sheffield”.

Pictures: https://imgur.com/a/9AlmIkg
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IXL .jpg

knife7knut
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Re: Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by knife7knut » Sun Feb 16, 2020 7:40 pm

Welcome to the forums! The knife is a pruning pattern used in gardening for trimming small tree branches and the like.The etch on the blade is the letters I * XL meaning I excell;a trademark of Wostenholm. Usually those letters are stamped in a plain letter but these are slightly fancy which is probably an earlier iteration.Early to mid 1800's is a reasonable estimate of age.
Old pruners don't bring a whole lot of money as most are not in very good shape but I'm sure yours has priceless sentimental value. Thanks for posting it.
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Mumbleypeg
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Re: Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by Mumbleypeg » Sun Feb 16, 2020 7:42 pm

Welcome to AAPK. This site prefers you post pictures here, so that they are available in the future for researchers. There is ample storage memory provided accordingly. That way when your image on the third party site is no longer visible, people reading this thread in the future will be able to see what this post is about. Hope you don’t mind that I’ve copied your picture and posted it here for posterity. ::tu::

Your knife is a hawkbill pruning knife, common in its day when agriculture was a prominent occupation in most countries. Wostenholm is an old well-regarded cutlery firm, located in Sheffield, England since around 1832. You have a nice, well used example. According to Goins Encyclopedia of Cutlery Markings the stamp on your knife was used from 1890-1971, when the firm was purchased by Joseph Rogers & Sons.

Ken
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adavid02
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Re: Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by adavid02 » Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:36 pm

I was told “with no country name, that definitively dates it before 1891. The bolsters and liners are one piece so that dates it’s to before 1860.”
This is inline with when I thought it was from as it was found with others items from my 5th great grandfather, Moses True, who founded Bunker Hill, Illinois. I have several other items of his and which is why I suspected the mid-1800s as the date.

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Mumbleypeg
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Re: Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by Mumbleypeg » Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:51 pm

That could very well be right. Goins Encyclopedia has nearly a page full of different markings for Wostenholm. Here’s a picture of the page describing those different markings, and their dates. You’ll note toward the bottom is “I*XL GEORGE WOSTENHOLM SHEFFIELD c 1890-1971. No “England”. That’s what I was going by in my previous post as that’s what I am seeing on your knife. Note carefully the other descriptions having different wording, and/or other markings such as crowns or man on horseback, etc.

You’re welcome to figure it out! :lol: click the picture to enlarge.

Ken
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deo-pa
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Re: Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by deo-pa » Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:55 pm

Enter “Wostenholm” in the AAPK Member Store search box at the upper right. Scroll through the listings and you will see a number of similar hawkbills. None are exactly like yours but they will give you a rough idea of the asking price for such knives, as would a search through eBay sold listings. Of course condition is everything so such comparisons are merely ballpark estimates.

Dennis

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LongBlade
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Re: Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by LongBlade » Sun Feb 16, 2020 11:00 pm

I have the same knife that I posted here (browse half way or so down the page): viewtopic.php?f=35&t=19895&start=465

In doing some background research it was definitely pre1860 and the blade stamp (IXL) was also earlier in the Wostenholm years... confirms your suspicions ::tu:: ...
____________________________________________________________________________
Lee

adavid02
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Re: Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by adavid02 » Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:23 am

Very cool! I don’t much about stag, but I’ll do some research. Makes me wonder my grandfather was doing with such a knife in a budding town. Thanks for the help!

kootenay joe
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Re: Found a Unique Knife in My Grandfather’s drawer

Post by kootenay joe » Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:40 am

LongBlade wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 11:00 pm
I have the same knife that I posted here (browse half way or so down the page): viewtopic.php?f=35&t=19895&start=465

In doing some background research it was definitely pre1860 and the blade stamp (IXL) was also earlier in the Wostenholm years... confirms your suspicions ::tu:: ...
Lee i just took a look at your old Wostenholm pruner. What a great old knife. One of the most attractive old knives i have seen. Very few knives have such perfect stag. It is a keeper because you will never find another this grand.
kj

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