Little Badger Vandalia Sandbar Bowie

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32481-Vandalia Sandbar Bowie

Our Knife:

Jim Bowie made this bowie style blade made famous when Mr Bowie killed 2 men in a duel, The Duel became infamous as Vandalia Sandbar fight and the knife was from then on known as "The Boiwe Knife".  Best evidence traces the knife was designed by Jim Bowie's brother Rezin Bowie in Avoyelles Parish, Louisiana and smithed by blacksmith Jesse Clifft out of an old file.

Our Sandbar Bowie is a large one  at 14” long. The traditional clip point blade is 9 ¾” long.  Comes with hone bezil and edge, and very sharp. The blade is made from hand forged Amalgamated steel, all carbon, forged into hardened steel. Handle is a superb polished end from a white tail deer antler.  

The tang on this knife is round and goes up the antler at least ¾ down the shaft.  Strong bond and It aint coming off.  Those guys in 1830 did not have the epoxies we have now.  The epoxy used to secure this knife made a chemical welded bond between the tang and the antler.  The tang and the antler will never separate, they are one.

There is a finger groove technically called the ricassa and choil. This is the non sharp part of the knife between the edge and the hilt. This groove has several functions.  The groove is an excellent holding place for the fore finger.  Use this groove for sharpening balance, and works well for hand to hand combat as well with butchering and skinning.

The Bolster/qullion is made from traditional bronze rather than brass.  Many of the early knives used bronze due to it was easier to get rather than brass.  This bronze Qullion gives this knife a unique look that you won’t see very often in modern historical replicas.

The sheath is out together with a Metis whip stitch, Badger learned from his Grandfather.

The  traditional seed bead work is Badgers wife’s, Talking Bird, also a Metis tribal member.  Talking bird has her art, uses her own unique stitch, always with a traditional native flaw.  This flaw cannot be replicated by machinery, making it an authentic stitch.  This flaw is native  tradition  teaches us the lesson of vulnerability.  Nothing is perfect. Everything and everyone has flaws  Nobody is perfect we are all human with a creator, being a part of who we are.  Talking Bird uses  her own unique seed bead patterns..

Carbon blades are known for there patina… and rusting without oiling. Forging a carbon blade is an art.  The blade needs to be taken care of with a light coat of oil regularly.  I oil my blades weekly with machine oil like a 3 in 1. I emphasize weekly to get that beautiful blue Patina these old blades were known for.   That is why so many modern blades are made from a form of stainless steel.  Stainless blades are hard to keep sharp but they do not rust. There is not much work involved in a stainless blade but the regular sharpening process because they do not hold an edge.  Carbon blades hold an edge and are stronger and more versatile.  

Little Badger Knives are made using the same techniques and styles of the original frontiersman knives of the 1820’s and 1830’s. Very few of those men used a mass produced knife.  They were forged by the local blacksmith.  In this same tradition, each Badger knife is an individual piece, one of a kind knife.  Individual quality.  No two knives are ever the same.

Each knife is unique, no two knives are the same.  I ship knives, well oiled, wrapped in plastic wrap. Do not touch the blade. Touching the blade of a newly forged carbon blade can leave permanent  prints from the oil in our skin. I never touch the blade with my skin.  I always use a fine cloth. When you get your knife Wipe the oil on the knife and re oil. It only takes a couple drops.  Oil weekly and you will build a beautiful blue patina on the blade.

Bowie History:

A Bowie Knife is a large multi task knife, a direct descendant of the Nordic scramsaxes.  These knives were carried by colonial pioneers, especials the Texans. Bowies were very popular by the middle 1820’s.

A bowie knife has many features.  The first is the quillion or crossguard with a similar design in swords.  Most bowies had a clip point blade where the forward part of the blade was clipped off.  The clip can be straight or concave.

This knives purpose was the idea of the one knife carry.  Before the bowie as many as 3 or 4 knives were carried, each with a different purpose. The bowing knife was an excellent camp knife for all camping duties including meal preparation.  The design also made the bowie an excellent skinning knife and butcher knife for game killed on the trail.  Of course the most important use of the bowie was self defense.  The bowie may be the best designed knife in history for hand to hand combat.  The weight and the length of the blade made it perfect for battle.

The original Bowie style knife was created by James Black. The Bowie knife got it’s famous name from Jim Bowie,  a well known frontiers man.  He did not design the knife as told in legends. He did use the knife.  Jim bowie’s brother Rezin Bowie.  The first bowie of this style was made by blacksmith Jesse Cliff in Avoyelles Parrish, Louisiana.  This knife was forged around 1827.  

Vidalia Sandbar Fight, was a formal one-on-one duel that erupted into a violent brawl involving a number of combatants on September 19, 1827. It took place on a large sandbar in the Mississippi River, near present-day Vidalia, Louisiana and resulted in the death of General Samuel Cuny and Major Norris Wright. American pioneer and folk hero James Bowie survived but was seriously injured in the fight. Jim’s survival from this duel and the killing of 2 men rocketed this large knife into stardom and legend.  

After Jim Bowie's death in 1836, James Black did a brisk business selling his knives to pioneers bound for Texas. Everyone seemed to want "Jim Bowie's knife." Black forged his knives behind a leather curtain and kept his process a secret. Black's knives were known to be exceedingly tough yet flexible. Many claimed that Black had rediscovered the process to make Damascus steel.  Legend has it that James Bowie improved on the design and brought this design to James Black who produced the knife for Mr Bowie. There is no direct contemporary evidence to establish that James Black made a knife for James Bowie and began making his bowie’s after his death and the fall of the Alamo. The story that he made Bowies knife rests solely on James Black's claims made well after he had been adjudged mentally incompetent.

*Authentic Native American Knives

As a member of the state-recognized tribe, Cherokees of Northeast Alabama, Keith Little Badger is in full compliance with The Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990.  This Act protects Native American Artisans.  All products must be marketed truthfully regarding Indian heritage and tribal affiliation of the producers.  



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