Original U.S. USMC Mark 2 Blade Marked KA-BAR Fighting Knife by Union Cutlery in Leather Sheath

Item Description

Original Item: This is a nice service used example of the legendary U.S.M.C marked Mark 2 "Ka-Bar" fighting knife by Union Cutlery with a leather belt sheath. Marine Corps issue knives are much harder to find on the market than the U.S.N. marked variety. Overall length of this Mark 2 knife is 11 7/8 inches, with a 6 7/8 inch clip-point blade. This early production example is marked on the blade ricasso with USMC, while the reverse ricasso is marked:


The Mk2 Knife was developed as an improvement over the Mk1 design, which had issues with blade snapping due to the thinner design. Working with Union Cutlery, USMC Colonel John M. Davis and Major Howard E. America contributed several important changes, including a longer, stronger blade, the introduction of a small fuller to lighten the blade, a peened pommel (later replaced by a pinned pommel), a straight (later, slightly curved) steel crossguard, and a stacked leather handle for better grip. The knife was officially known as the 1219C2, but it was commonly called the "Ka-Bar" after the trademark of Union Cutlery that was on the blades of early examples such as this one. The first production order went out to Camillus Cutlery Company, who produced the largest number of knives during WWII. The design was subsequently adopted by the Navy as the US Navy Utility Knife, Mark 2, and the USMC adopted it as the USMC Mark 2 Combat Knife, or simply the Knife, Fighting Utility.

This knife features the early-style markings on the blade, and has a straight early issue type cross guard. Knife features original leather washer grip, which is in good condition but worn, and it has a heavy steel pommel with cross pinned tang. 

This example looks to have seen a lot of use, and the original finish was worn off of the blade and pommel, with some signs of oxidation. It was them painted black, some time ago, and continued to be used. We unfortunately have no way of knowing whether this happened in service or post service. The blade still have the correct shape, though sharpening and use have shortened it by about 1/8".

The leather sheath is the standard type used with the Mark 2, and is in very good used condition. The leather looks to have been dyed black originally, but it is still supple and without cracks, except on the securing strap which has a few. All of the stitching and rivets are still intact, and it is structurally very sound. The securing strap is intact, and the snap is still functional, though the finish is worn as shown.

A very nice example of a USMC-marked "KA-BAR" knife, field used with a very nice original leather sheath. No collection is complete without one! Ready to display!

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