Original U.S. WWII RH Pal 36 Fighting Knife With Scabbard Named To US Marine Wounded During New Britain Campaign - With Research

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. Now this is a fantastic opportunity to add not only a beautiful example of a Pal 36 fighting knife to your collection, but one with solid provenance with a binder of research!

This knife and scabbard has the name of “B.W. Arnold” etched on each side of the blade in the blood groove with “B.W. Arnold” ink stamped on the back of the scabbard.

Private First Class Billy Wesley Arnold served with Company B, 1st Battalion 5th Marines during WWII. He was a veteran of Guadalcanal, New Britain, Eastern New Guinea and the Peleliu Campaigns. PFC Arnold was from Orlando, Florida and enlisted in the United States Marine Corps at the age of 17 years old and upon completion of initial training from the 12th Recruit Battalion aboard Parris Island, was sent to Company B, 1st Battalion 5th Marines on April 6, 1942.

In august of 1942, the brand new PFC Arnold along with the rest of the men from Company B ⅕, found themselves on a ship enroute to the infamous island hopping campaigns in the Pacific Theater of War.

On December 30 1943, PFC Arnold was wounded during Operation Cartwheel, a major military operation for the Allies in the Pacific theater of World War II. Cartwheel was an operation aimed at neutralizing the major Japanese base at Rabaul. The operation was directed by the Supreme Allied Commander in the South West Pacific Area (SWPA), General Douglas MacArthur, whose forces had advanced along the northeast coast of New Guinea and occupied nearby islands. Allied forces from the South Pacific Area, under Admiral William Halsey, advanced through the Solomon Islands toward Bougainville. The Allied forces involved were from Australia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the US and various Pacific Islands.

This is an excellent example of the U.S. PAL RH 36 fighting knife, manufactured by the PAL Cutlery Company, which was carried by PFC Arnold in the PTO.

According to The Official Price Guide of Collector Knives by C Houston Price & Mark D Zaleysky, PAL was originally used as a trademark by the Utica Knife & Razor Company of Utica, NY from about 1924-1939. PAL marked knives of that era used blades imported from Germany, and the blades typically bore the word “Germany” as well. Another company using the name PAL was established in Chicago in 1934. This company was known as the Pal Blade Company of Chicago, and was started by Otto Kraus. In 1935 the two “PAL” companies merged into one, known simply as the PAL Blade Company, and opened a manufacturing facility in Plattsburg, NY. Around 1940 PAL purchased the cutlery division of the Remington Arms Company, including their existing stock of completed knives and knife parts.

While PAL was originally a manufacturer of pocketknives, but after the Remington acquisition they expanded their range of products to include a variety of fixed blade knives as well. PAL received a number of US government knife contracts during World War II and produced thousands of combat knives during the war years. Pal went out of business in 1953.The USN Mark 1 combat knife was produced by a variety of manufactures during World War II and was issued to Navy personnel by the thousands. It had a 5 ¼” long blade and was patterned after typical hunting and sideknives of the era. The subsequent Mark 2 knife had a longer 7” blade.

This particular example was manufactured by the PAL Cutlery Company and is clearly marked on one side of the blade: RH – PAL MADE IN USA – 36. The knife is in great service used condition, with the blade retaining about 10%+ of its original grayish parkerized finish. The blade shows only some light finish wear from insertion and removal from the composite scabbard. The blade is sharpened, and shows signs of heavy sharpening but still retains the original shape. There is an “X” carved into the grip and the last washer closest to the pommel was replaced by a piece of leather.

The scabbard is a period replacement which is nicely named on the reverse B.W. Arnold. Overall this is a very high condition example of a wonderful PAL 36 USN combat knife with a nice condition scabbard. No collection of World War II US military knives is complete without a PAL knife.

Comes more than ready for further research and display!


Blade Length: 6 1/8"
Blade Style: Clip-point "Bowie" Style
Overall length: 10 3/4“
Crossguard: 2 1/16”
Scabbard Length: 9" with Belt Loop

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