• The Wait Is Over. From this thread, orders for the 2023 BladeForums Traditional Knife are open & here's your handy order button.
    OPEN TO ALL MEMBERS WITH GOLD OR HIGHER PAID SUBSCRIPTIONS OR have 25+ posts in the Traditional Forum Preorder price is $160 shipped CONUS, price increase on 9/25 11:59PM when ordering opens to anyone on the forums
    User Name

Who invented the folding knife?

May 4, 1999
Well, the title basically says it all.

Fixed blades have been around since the fall; the Lord sure didn't need a knife to provide the skins for Adam and Eve's clothing after their expulsion from the garden of Eden, but Adam surely needed one after his disobediance, thus the origin of the fixed blade knife.

But what happened after that? Who first realized that the blade could fold into the handle? I know this seems like a pretty trivial thing in today's world of liner-lock vs. axis lock vs. lockback, but at some point the invention of the folder was a pretty significant advance in and of itself.

So, whose idea was it that the size of the knife could be reduced by 50% by simply folding the darn thing? (I'm sure this man would be #1 on Kevin McClung's hitlist) :)

Boy, I sure hope that smiley macro thing worked, as this is my first attempt at making one! :)

-- Ryan Meyering (After edit, smiley thing still didn't work! Oh, well...)


For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Romans 6:23

[This message has been edited by Ryan Meyering (edited 21 May 1999).]

[This message has been edited by Ryan Meyering (edited 21 May 1999).]

[This message has been edited by Ryan Meyering (edited 21 May 1999).]
Sorry, but there's now way to tell. I've seen several examples that dated circa 100BC.
They were Roman, if my memory serves....
Ryan, if you are interested in folders (their history, styles etc.) you might want to pick up "The Working Folding Knife". This book was written by Steven Dick, the editor of "Tactical Knives". It has a ton of general information in it. The ancient history is a little lacking though, it only states that some of the earliest folders were Roman and were just blades, pivots and handles (no springs or locking mechanisms). This is a style now called a 'penny knife'. This corresponds with Dan's knowledge.

"Walk softly and carry a big folder... and a small folder... and a SAK... and a multi-tool..."
Actually, um, I invented the folding knife. Honest.

Just turned out somebody had already had that idea...


(Why else would a bear want a pocket?)
Attlia W. Folder was the inventor

Bob Taylor

Some days it's not worth chewing through the restraints and escaping.

You have the smileys facing the wrong way
. Type the colon first then the right parenthesis.

As far as the inventor of the folding knife - Ludwig Von Cutco

[This message has been edited by Mike Moore (edited 21 May 1999).]
I have it from good sources that August Q Ceasarian invented the first folder back in 1200 A.D. But he didn't get the pattern trademarked till 1894 and by then it was to late because the whole Idea was stolen by Frost Cutlery

[This message has been edited by Strider (edited 21 May 1999).]
You're making your smileys backwards, Ryan. Type the : first and then the ).

Seems the Romans only had simple folders with no lock or spring, like straight razors and the traditional folders a few bladesmiths are still making. I saw an article in Scientific American several years ago about an excavation of a Dark Age Norse town and the place was full of locking folders -- the article said there was a large variety of ingenious locking mechanisms but didn't go into specifics.

-Cougar Allen :{)
Didn't Jack invent the folder - weren't they all called "Jack knives" since forever??

The Fighting Old Man

Is this "Jack" any relation of the famous Thomas Crapper?

Walk in the Light,
I believe the same man who invented the Internet also invented the folding knife, none other than our current vice-president. He is an inventor extraordinnaire, his other credits being the airplane, electricity, Noxema skin creme, and trojan prophylactics.
I invented it. I sold the rights to Chris Reeve so he could perfect it.

Al Gore tried to sue me saying he invented it. He also told me he invented the internet and I replied with this.

Dear Mr. Gore,

No one person or organization can claim the sole credit for the Internet.
But the first germ of the Internet was a series of memos written in 1962 by MIT's J. C. R. Licklider about what he called the "Galactic Network" concept. He envisioned a global network through which everyone could share and access data and programs. Only a few months later, Licklider became the head of the computer research program at the United States Department of Defense's Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), the institution that largely spearheaded and funded the Internet's development.

In 1961, a series of independent research teams began developing packet switching and the beginnings of what would eventually become TCP/IP, the basic protocol that defines how information is exchanged over the Net. (See "How does the Net work?" for an explanation of these technologies.)

In 1967, ARPA's Lawrence Roberts published his "Plan for the ARPANet" computer network, which built on these new technologies to propose an architectural design for a worldwide network.

By the end of 1968, the company that would become BBN Planet (a major backbone ISP recently bought by GTE) was well into the development of the first hardware that could route data over the ARPANet. In late 1969, the first tests were made at UCLA and then at Stanford.

Over the next several years, this test-tube Internet grew steadily but unremarkably as government agencies, universities, and corporations continued to develop and hammer out protocols and architectures. Email and the Internet made their first public appearances in 1972 at the Internet Computer Communication Conference. In 1973 and 1974, the protocol known as TCP/IP emerged in essentially its current form, although the same group of collaborators would continue to refine it through the early 1980s.

Once the protocols were in place, the various developers formulated much of the software and services that make up the Internet. The basic services for connecting to files remotely (via Telnet), transferring files over the Net (via FTP), and sending and receiving electronic mail appeared in the mid- and late 1970s. The Usenet news system first appeared in 1979 as an offshoot of the rise of Unix. The World Wide Web began in 1989.

In 1990, the U.S. government officially decommissioned ARPANet, and the National Science Foundation (NSF) took over the role of managing the Internet backbone, which was then called the NSFNet. In 1995, the NSF in turn withdrew, turning the backbone over to a consortium of commercial providers.
Best Regards,
Mike Turber
BladeForums Site Owner and Administrator
Do it! Do it right! Do it right NOW!