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Thread: Camillus Tang stamps and dates

  1. #1

    Camillus Tang stamps and dates


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    While we know that Camillus used numerous tang stamps through the years, that it is very hard to date a Camillus knife because tang stamps were frequently changed and sometimes old blades with early stamps were used, I thought it might be of interest to have an illustrated listing of Camillus tang stamps with approximate dates that they were used. So here's a start at that; if you see errors or have other comments, let me know and I will edit as appropriate. With one exception, these all came from electrician's knives (i.e., TL-29 or signal corp. style knives). Except for the first two, which are based on information from this forum, the date references are based on Goins Encyclopedia

    Camillus tang markings:

    1989-closing


    Late 1970s or early 1980s forward (slanted font seen on hunting knife in 1973 catalog; this mark seen on pocket knife in 1988 pamphlet)


    1976 forward (not really sure if this is different from the next, but it was on a later knife)


    1960-1976


    1946-1956


    1946-1950


    1941-1946 example a


    1941-1946 example b (questionable origin, might be a fake)


    1941-1946 Sword brand (front)


    1941-1946 Sword brand (back)
    Last edited by acourvil; 07-14-2008 at 03:31 PM. Reason: left one out

  2. #2
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    That is awesome!!!
    Nice macro lens work too
    Looks like mine are mostly from he 70's
    I need to get a 3/4" disco-ball for my Camillus display case now.....

  3. #3
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    Excellent work!

    I've learned to take John Goins' listings with a grain of salt. While it is an important and monumental work, it is often filled with errors. In light of what CAMCO, Phil Gibbs and others have said, I tend to think of the Camillus stamps in terms of "first use", and not too strictly on "last use". "Circa" is an appropriate term to use many times. Nice photos and great info! Thanks!

    Codger

  4. #4
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    Appreciate the work Acourvil. I don't have too many Camillus, but now I know what to look for on the stamps.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Codger_64 View Post
    I've learned to take John Goins' listings with a grain of salt. While it is an important and monumental work, it is often filled with errors. In light of what CAMCO, Phil Gibbs and others have said, I tend to think of the Camillus stamps in terms of "first use", and not too strictly on "last use". "Circa" is an appropriate term to use many times. Nice photos and great info! Thanks!

    Codger
    Yes, I agree. It's too bad no one is taking an active approach to updating Goins in a credible way.

    For the Camillus stuff, having the first use date is handy, and the "range," while imprecise, is useful when looking at other clues to date the knife. I thought that thread like this might be a good way to add some of the collective knowledge of this group as well. It would be great if someone has some samples of the older Camillus marks that could be added, as well as the marks that were used on military issue knives other than the TL-29s.

    BTW, the photos were all taken with a little Canon Elph SD30, a camera I got because it was small enough to take running

    [3-2-08 added new pics; can't add in first message due to 10 pic limit per post]

    c. 1916 (main blade) from #33 Easy-opener


    c. 1916 (second blade) from #33 Easy-opener


    c.1915 from WWI Marlin Spike


    c. 1944 from WWII Army Air Corps Emergency Machete


    c. 1959 from Air Force Pilot's survival knife


    c. 1940 from Camillus WWII Army Air Corps and Navy Sheath Knife



    c. 1940 from Early WWII Marine Corp Knife or 5665 Hunting Knife

    Last edited by acourvil; 02-08-2010 at 04:58 PM.

  6. #6
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    This is fantastic!. Great information. Perhaps this thread should become permanent here as a "sticky"?!?.

  7. #7
    Added a few more in post #5 . . .

  8. #8
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    I like the 1915 marlin spike one the best so far
    It looks REALLY old skool.....

    Nice crisp pictures BTW
    Is that with macro lens??

  9. #9
    Actually, it's my itty-bitty Canon SD30 Digital Elph on the macro setting.

  10. #10
    Great photos, How did you light it? Looks as if no flash was used?

  11. #11
    No flash, outdoors on our back porch but not in direct sunlight.

  12. #12
    Thanks for the link acourvil. I am a new fan of Camillus.

  13. #13
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    Thanks for the post

    I have a old Camillus I wanted to find out about date of stamp mark. Came here and found you had posted just what I was hoping to find.
    This old hard rubber handle fits the 41-46 estimate you give nicely.




    Thanks for posting!
    Ed

  14. #14
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    Camillus lists this knife as a WW2 Army Air Corps Utility Knife. Looking at the fullness of the blades I would say that it is certainly worth a re-handle and clean up. It can't make it lose value as with the current shrunken scales it can't be worth much.

  15. #15
    Greyelm, do you have a link to the camillus list or is it from that book?

  16. #16
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    There is an illustration titled "Camillus Knives - that went to war!" on page 186/187 of The Standard Knife Collectors Guide 4th Edn. by Roy Ritchie and Ron Stuart. Another excellent book , full of colour prints is Pocket Knives of the United States Military by Michael W. Silvey this shows knives from many manufacturers. The following web site is dedicated to military knives in general.

    http://www.usmilitaryknives.com/

  17. #17
    Here are the "Knives That Went to War" pages from Camillus' 1946 catalog:




  18. #18
    Great stuff acourvil, thanks again.

  19. #19
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    Great thread!

    Since it has been close to two years since anyone has posted on here, I thought I would kick it to the top and see if anyone had more tang stamps to add.

    Dale

  20. #20
    Added another fixed blade tang stamp

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