George Washington

Discussion in 'Camillus Collector's Forum' started by orvet, Feb 19, 2009.

  1. orvet

    orvet

    Oct 11, 2005
    I got this knife in the mail today.

    The seller said it was a reproduction of George Washington's pen knife made by Camillus in the 1930s.

    Not sure I buy the 1930s, but a neat knife none-the-less.

    Anyone know about this one?

    Thanks,
    Dale

    Camillus Geo Washington -pile.jpg

    Camillus Geo Washington.jpg
     
  2. Phil Gibbs

    Phil Gibbs Cutlery Student Platinum Member

    Nov 11, 1998
    Might be true! I will leave dating of that to Tom (Camco).
    Camillus did another repro in the 90's but that is one of the originals we used as a template!
    Nice find!
     
  3. CAMCO

    CAMCO Moderator Moderator

    539
    Dec 29, 1999
    Dale,
    The first George Washington knife was introduced in 1932 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of his birth. The knife is a replica of the actual knife that was given to G.W. by his mother.
    I have some old ads showing this knife and I will send you copies to post here.

    Tom Williams
     
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  4. orvet

    orvet

    Oct 11, 2005
    Thanks Phil & Tom for the info.

    Phil,
    If I understood you correctly, my knife is one of the 1930s issue reproductions?

    Tom,
    As always it is my pleasure to post Camillus information here.


    My thanks to both of you for sharing your wealth of Camillus information with us here in this forum.

    Dale
     
  5. jonet143

    jonet143

    68
    Jun 30, 2006
    hey dale, i have one as well.
     
  6. Phil Gibbs

    Phil Gibbs Cutlery Student Platinum Member

    Nov 11, 1998
    Absolutely!
    I just needed the dates from Tom!

    In my view, an important piece for a Camillus Collection!
     
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  7. orvet

    orvet

    Oct 11, 2005
    Thank you so much for the info Phil.
    That is really cool.
    I thought it was the newer reproduction.

    Dale
     
  8. gbuskirk

    gbuskirk

    May 1, 2007
    FYI, I think this is a repro based on the original held in the collection of the Masonic Lodge of Alexandria, VA. See it here.
     
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  9. orvet

    orvet

    Oct 11, 2005
    Great story!

    Thanks,
    Dale
     
  10. CAMCO

    CAMCO Moderator Moderator

    539
    Dec 29, 1999
    Camillus made three versions of the George Washington knife. The first one was offered in 1932, the second version was a smaller knife sold at the 1939 World's Fair and the third version was introduced in the 1990's.

    Tom Williams
     
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  11. citytransplant

    citytransplant

    232
    Apr 12, 2008
    Did the third version lack a shackle as well as George's signature on the handle (as seen in Dale's example above)? I've seen a few in the Bay recently without a shackle or George's signature. The blade(s) look legit and the tang stamp correct for the 1990s however.
     
  12. Vit_213

    Vit_213

    725
    Feb 4, 2011
    third version
    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Vit_213

    Vit_213

    725
    Feb 4, 2011
    The second version (1939)
    2.5" closed
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2020
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  14. Codger_64

    Codger_64 Moderator Moderator

    Oct 8, 2004
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  15. Vit_213

    Vit_213

    725
    Feb 4, 2011
    Is this your knife? What is the material of the handle?
    There were two variants: plastic Perlex (GW1) and genuine mother of pearl (GW2). Since when attaching the MOP with rivets there is a risk of its destruction, it could have been glued. I do not pretend to be true, this is just my guess.
     
  16. Codger_64

    Codger_64 Moderator Moderator

    Oct 8, 2004
    Thanks for the reply. It was just purchased by a friend and he doesn't have it in hand yet. I've contacted Phillip and he was unsure as well. My friend who bought it will be able to tell what the material is when he has it in hand. Phillip did say that it was possible they made them in two batches and one may have been sent to Santa Fe for assembly like this, glued not pinned. Was there a marking for GW1/GW2?
     
  17. Codger_64

    Codger_64 Moderator Moderator

    Oct 8, 2004
    From the archives here:

    You are correct. Camillus made a skeleton of the George Washington knife and sent them to Sante Fe Stoneworks to have pearl handles installed. I was not aware of this knife and Wendy at Camillus provided this information.
    Tom Williams

    I found a sales receipt for the GW-1 in an ended eBay auction dated May 2000. Price was $39.99 which matches retail in the 2000 and 2001 price lists. Haven't found a price list or catalog showing the GW-2 yet, but a knife author, Steve Pfeiffer, stated that he sold one of these and it came with an "original" box from Catonsville Pocket & Penknife Co., a Baltimore firm. Which suggests they may have ordered this more expensive version. That might explain why the "GW-2" does not appear in the price lists?

    So to sum it up, there were four Camillus variants of the George Washington quill knife. 1932, 1939 New York World's Fair small and 2000 plastic Perlex and 2000 MOP. Also 1932 reproductions by Robeson, Winchester and others.
     
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  18. Vit_213

    Vit_213

    725
    Feb 4, 2011
    Addon: In 2004, the retail price for GW-2 was $105,95. I don't remember where I got this information from, but I'll try to find it.
     
  19. Codger_64

    Codger_64 Moderator Moderator

    Oct 8, 2004
    Great! Every detail helps round out the story on them. Also I see several different forms of the model numbers quoted but only the official source of the one listed in the two aforementioned price lists archived. And no documentation yet on date of the SFS issue. I did see a sticker in an ended auction on eBay which looked like it came from a shipping sleeve for the GW-2. But the pattern number had more letters in it.
     
  20. Prester John

    Prester John Gold Member Gold Member

    May 20, 2018
    Thanks for posting. Fascinating stuff.
     

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