Does it open?
It opens like a Barry Wood folder.
This mechanism has a long history. I have seen examples from the late 17th or early 18th century, and it probably goes back long before that. It folds up and locks open, without the use of springs (Wood used the handles themselves as 'springs').
Here is the history of the mechanism in the US Patent Office. All I can say for sure is... this is not all of the variations.
* * *
Barry Wood's patent: 3,702,501 referenced five:
226,910 of April 27, 1880 - Friebertshauser of Beaver Falls PA (with rotating safety lock)
338,251 of March 23, 1886 - Crandall et al (improved version, two blades)
357,353 of February 8, 1887 - Wiesner (with sliding bolster lock)
488,340 of December 20, 1892 - Skoglund of (with lock lever)
927,352 of July 6, 1909 - Hoglund et al (with interchangeable blades)
Crandall refers to
36,620 of October 7, 1862 - Perry
Other related patents not referenced by Wood include
* * * (and I'm probably missing some):
23,975 of May 10, 1859 - Belcher
61,229** of January 15, 1867 - Milliken - w pics inside handle liners
404,870 of June 11, 1889 - Schenck
426,445 of April 29, 1890 - Hasselstrom
464,681 of December 8, 1891 - Tollefson
587,692 of August 10, 1897 - Ball
BRITISH Bradley & Ball May 17, 1898
618,488 of January 31, 1899 - Conover
631,546 of August 22, 1899 - Miller
749,230 of January 12, 1904 - Severance
801,970 of October 17, 1905 - Connell
847,206 of March 12, 1907 - Saunderson
912,197 of February 9, 1909 - Soderstrand
915,269 of March 16, 1909 - Chemienes
1,350,251 of August 17, 1920 - Armour
1,353,490 of September 21, 1920 - Pantalek
1,556,788 of October 13, 1925 - Hallverson
1,965,291 of July 3, 1934 - Kowald
3,702,501 11/14/72 Barry Bertram Wood - "split handle jack knife"
D224,389 07/25/72 Barry Wood
4,133,106 01/09/79 Addis > Wyoming Knife
* * *
The OP knife is probably older than any of these, but a few of the patented versions do look like it.
It would sure help to see the whole knife.
Here is a likely candidate.
It is a simplified copy of a knife shown by Perret in 1771 -- patent drawing probably copied right out of Perret's book.
Perret's version is actually a folding plug bayonet... talk about useful artifacts.
* * *
Any thoughts on true value on this one?
I'd pay $35. Someone might give you more. Others might give you less. I have never seen one sell (or offered for that matter).Any thoughts on true value on this one?
It is an interesting knife.
But the condition severely limits its moon-a-dairy value.
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