In what could be the most important discovery in knife history, what is alleged to be Blade Magazine Cutlery Hall-Of-Fame© member Jim Bowie’s original knife has been pulled from a river in Louisiana.
“Fantastic!” exclaimed Bowie historian Daniel Reese Schively when told of the discovery. “If it really is Bowie’s knife, it will change everything in terms not only of the knife itself, but also will help validate the legend and legacy of James Bowie the man.”
Others were not quite so enthusiastic, including Henry Searles, a long-time maker of bowie reproductions.
“I’ll believe it when I see it,” he scoffed. “A knife pulled from a river after almost two centuries? It’s got to be just one big chunk of rust!”
However, according to the man who found it, Arlan Thibodeaux of Marion, Louisiana, the knife is in remarkably good condition. “We were dredging the Maravich River for the Parish of Alexandria Public Works Department when we spotted a shiny object encrusted in black, slimy mud,” Thibodeaux said. “When we pulled it out, we could see it was a knife, but we had no idea exactly how important the knife might be.”
It is believed the dark Louisiana river mud may have preserved the knife remarkably well despite the long period of time.
At 9.25 inches, the straight-backed blade matches the length Jim Bowie’s brother, Rezin, described in writing about the original bowie knife: “The length of the blade was nine and one quarter inches, its width one and a half inches, singled edged and blade not curved.” In addition, the pinned handle appears to be made of ebony and is in a coffin shape, a style that was very popular circa the 1830s.
Whether the knife really is Bowie’s remains to be seen. However, the war of words apparently has only just begun. Stay tuned for further developments.
Oh, and in case you haven’t figured it out by now, this story is a total and complete hoax. Happy April Fool’s Day!