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Original U.S. WWII Era Frank J. Richtig Filleting Knife with Leather Sheath - Converted to Fighting Knife

Regular price $350.00

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Compare at $595.00

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is an example of a Richtig Bread Slicer kitchen knife made by the legendary Frank J. Richtig of Nebraska. The knife came to us with the history of it being used as a fighting knife (hence the leather sheath). This example was sharpened, changing the blade profile to more closely resemble a fileting knife. While the story of this exact knife is unknown, the story of F.J. Richtig and his legendary knives still live on.

Frank Richtig made knives for about 50 years from the 1930's to the 1970's. He was born in Nebraska in 1887, and became an apprentice blacksmith in 1905, and in 1916 began experimenting with electric heat treating of steel. in 1925 he started producing knives. He produced many styles of cast aluminum handled kitchen knives as well as aluminum and regular handled hunting knives. His main credit would be in his secret tempering method. Where ever he'd set up his wares he'd bring an anvil along and proceed to cut a piece of metal in two and still retain an edge sharp enough to shred paper. In 1936 Frank Richtig appeared in Ripley’s Believe It or Not after using one of his knives to cut the lock from a jail cell. Richtig’s claim to fame, so to speak, was in his blades. Having the proper amount of hardness to cut through steel and iron, and yet be able to maintain a fine cutting edge. It is said that Richtig’s method of treating the steel, a closely guarded secret while he was alive, is is something he took to the grave with him. One of his other unique features was his cast aluminum handles. In 1938 he was declared a Master Ironsmith by the National Blacksmith and Welders Association. Frank passed away in 1977.

This Bread Slicer came in various sizes with this one being 5”, most likely shortened slightly when the knife was sharpened. The aluminum handle is molded directly onto the blade with the faint FJR / CLARKSON / NEB. marking on the pommel. The leather sheath could have been custom made or adapted from another knife.

A lovely set ready for further research and display.

Blade Length: 5”
Total Length: 9 ½”
Scabbard Length: 6” With Belt Loop

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