Switchblades Past and Present

A home for those who love the springblade knives, including American, Italian, German, English and others.

  • Gus Marsh

    This is an early switchblade known as the button in the bolster. The Press Button Knife Co, in Walden, NY, made this knife. It is 8 ¼ inches long when opened, the blade is 3 ½ inches and the knife is 4 7/8 inches long when closed. The bolsters and lines are made of nickel steel and the handles are real jigged bone. This is a real good example of early American craftsmen, I only wish these knives could talk sometimes.

  • Wayne Justis

    Hello Gus, I really like Press Buttons and collect them myself if you ever want to sell that one let me know .


  • Bob C.

    Thats a fine looking Pressbutton Gus.

  • In Memoriam

    D ale

    Gus .. Sweet example of George Schrade's design work .. 'n in great shape too !!!

  • Gus Marsh

    This is an early switchblade known as the button in the bolster with folding guard. The Press Button Knife Co, in Walden, NY, made this knife. It is 8 ¼ inches long when opened, the blade is 3 ½ inches and the knife is 4 7/8 inches long when closed. The bolsters are made of German silver and liners are steel and the handles are real jigged brown picked-bone, there are no cracks or chips on these handles. This is a real good example of early American craftsmen.


    Any prices on these old switch blades? 319 759 5229 in Iowa.
  • Gus Marsh

    In the "Official Price Guide to Collector Knives, 15th Edition by Price & Zalesky, on page 439, it says the Schrade Folding Hunter with guard is $500.00 mint. There aren't many switchblades in that book and I don't have any other price guides giving their current values.



  • jim

  • jim

  • Gus Marsh

    This is an early switchblade with a button and a lock. On one side of the tang it says PRESTO, PAT. JAN 30-40, MADE IN U.S.A. On the other side of the tang it says George Schrade Knife Co., Bridgeport, Conn. It is 8 3/4 inches long when opened, the blade is 3 3/4 inches and the knife is 5 inches long when closed. The bolsters are made of German silver and the liners are made of steel and the handles are real jigged brown picked bone, there are no cracks or chips on these handles. This is a real good example of early American craftsmen.

  • Wayne Justis

  • Wayne Justis

    Here are a couple 3 3/4"  Press Button Doubles.including one with safeties(bootom knife) and another that is stamped "Patent Applied For "(top knife). If you will notice all have a different jigging to the bone.
  • Gus Marsh

    This is a PRESTO made by George Schrade Knife Company in Bridgeport, Conn.  During the early 1980’s, I would go up to the Great Western Gun & Knife show in Los Angeles, CA. At that time, I would go to my bank and withdraw $100.00 for the three-day show. On Friday I walked into building #5 and a guy had three of these knives for sale, they were mint and in a box. He was asking $40.00 each or all three for $100.00. I didn’t want to blow me entire wad of money on one sale, so I purchased just one. Now I kick myself you know where when I see what they are selling for today. 

    On one tang it is marked PRESTO, PAT. JAN 30-40, MADE IN U.S.A. and on the other side of the tang is it marked Geo. Schrade Knife Co., Inc. Bridgeport, Conn.  It has a large pruning blade that is 2 ¾ inches long, nickel silver liners and bolsters, and shackle. The handles are black plastic cracked ice and this knife is just over 4 inches long when closed. There are no cracks on the handle; it has good action, locks and seats deep. In all my years of collecting, this is the finest old mint knife I have ever found.

  • Ken W.

    Nice knife! I have one just like it in the same condition and some clip blade models too!




  • Ken W.

  • Gus Marsh

    This is an A. C. Manufacturing Company (made by Aerial Manufacturing Company) it has a 4-½ inch blade that is back spring released. Beautiful stag bone handles and brass liners and nickel silver double bolsters. On one side of the tang it’s marked A.C. MFG CO., MARINETTE, WIS. And on the other side of the tang it says PAT. OCT 23rd 1916. I love showing this knife to my friends, most of them have no idea of how to open it or close this knife.

    In the summer of 2005, I spent approximately a month in Northern Minnesota and Wisconsin, looking for any information about this company, old photo, etc. I visited Duluth and Marinette, Wisconsin, checking out the libraries, historical societies and local newspapers. I felt that I ended up giving historical societies more information about Aerial Cutlery Company, than what I took back.

  • Gus Marsh

    This is a Flylock 9-inch letter opener with a small pen blade and blue-swirl celluloid handles. On one side of the tang is marked “FLYLOCK REG. U.S. PAT. OFF. And on the other side of the tang it says FLYLOCK KNIFE CO., B’PORT, CONN. One the pile side of the blade is etched “Lehigh Steel Co., New York, N.Y.” I can just see a secretary at Lehigh Steel with this letter opener in her desk.

  • Gus Marsh

    This is one of my favorite knives; it is an Schrade Fishtail, 4 inch closed and a 3-¼ inch blade. It has real jigged bone handles and brass liners. I picked up this knife at a hardware store in Denver, Colorado. It was around the early 1970’s and the dealer had put all of the switchblades in a back room. At first he was reluctant to show me anything, but after talking with him for a few minutes, he drag out several boxes of knives. I purchased two, one for me and one for my dad, who has since passed away. This knife is in mint condition, it almost certainly has been opened and closed 10 times in its’ life.

  • jim

    Very nice Schrade switchblade,Gus.
  • Gus Marsh

    This is the Virginia INOX with a spear point blade, side lever action, jigged bone handles and shotgun puller in both 12 gauge and 16 gauge. It has steel bolsters and liners and the gauges are marked on each side. This knife belonged to my grandfather who lived in Northern Minnesota all his life. We he passed away, it went to my dad and when my dad passed away in 2000, it is now in my hands. The liners are starting to separate and I imagine it is from the sub zero cold climates to temperate summers in Minnesota. This knife blade is 3 3/16 inches long and it is 4 3/4 inches when closed, the spring is still very strong on this knife.

  • jim

    Nice old Springer...:)
  • Gus Marsh

    This is the Camillus Model MC-1 with jigged orange plastic handles, auto clip blade and a manual shroud cutter and a bail. This is the military paratrooper knife and I have seen the tang marked with CAMILLUS, NEW YORK, USA, also SCHRADE WALDEN, NY, USA STAINLESS and LOGAN/SMYTH, VENICE, FL, USA. Schrade was the first of the three companies to make this style of knife for the military. The third company to make this knife was Logan/Smyth and it was the worst quality paratrooper made: normally loose and poorly finished. Strangely, because of supply and demand, it is becoming difficult to find one of these in really good condition, so in the future its value may appreciate despite its poor qualities.

  • Clint Thompson


    At this writing Colonial Cutlery Int., Inc. of 61A Dewey Avenue, Warwick, RI 02886 is making the M-724 Military Auto Knife.  You can view this company and knife at;http://www.colonialknifecorp.com/  I know this company is selling this knife to the military....in what quantities I do not know.

  • Jan Carter

    Ok, so I am trying to do a little research on some automatics.  A friend allowed me to view them (yahoo) take some pics and write down some info on them.  He is looking for any info on them and possibly a value. Can someone help with this? I just downloaded some pics here


    1) Tang says:
    Geo Schrade
    Knife Co Inc
    BPT Conn
    otherside of blade says:
    PAT JAN 30-40

    2)Tang says:
    Press Button
    Knife CO
    Walden NY
    Other side is blank

    3)Tang Stamp Says:
    Cut Co
    Waden NY
    other side says:
    US Pat Dec21. 09 Sept 13, 10 June 6, 16

    4)Tang stamp says:
    Challange Cut Co
    BPort Conn
    reverse side says:
    US Pat

    5)Tang Reads:
    A.C.MFG CO
    Marinette WIS
    Pat Oct 23, 1916


    What we have is five knives

    Awesome Automatics

  • Clint Thompson

    Nice knives guys.  I love the old ones.  I have several of the new knives from Pro-Tech and some German as well.  I sold my American Collection some years ago when the family came first.  On a cops salary that happened a lot. Looking to start over on collecting these. Nice pictures.

  • Larry Slate

    I would recommend buying Mark Erickson's "Antique American Switchblades".  He can find it on Amazon.com for about $25.  All those knives are addressed there.  Let me know if he wants to sell them, preferably before he reads the book :) 

  • Jan Carter


    ROFL, I will and Thanks for the advise

  • Gus Marsh

    This is the George Schrade Auto, 7 inches over all with a 3 inch clip blade, fishtail, brown bone handles, The tang is marked Presto, Pat Jan 30-40, Made in USA and on the other side of the tang it says Geo Schrade Knife Co. Inc. Bgdt, Conn.

  • Clint Thompson


    This Schrade Presto is in great shape.  What a knife to have.  The bone handle really makes this knife.  Thanks for sharing and thanks for this clear picture.

  • Clint Thompson

    Here is my not so Antique Hubertus auto knives.  The small stag handle one is about 30 years old.

  • Alex K.

    Nice group of Hubies you have there Clint! I especially like the guardian.
  • Clint Thompson


    Thanks Alex.  The folding cross-guard is a favorite one too.  I carried the smaller stag handled one for a couple of years.  Their keepers.

  • Lee Saunders

    A couple of switchblades in the mail today!

    The first is not an antique, but it's a real nice Schrade.

    It has pretty kind of copper Abalone handles.  On the bolster (which is also the auto-open button) it says 'Schrade'.

    On the tang it says:

    Schrade Cut.


    Made in U.S.A.

    Nothing on the other side.

    On the box it says 'Fire and Ice Tempered' and the knife is wrapped in a brown was-paper.  I don't buy too many new switches but I like this one and Schrades are nice no matter how old they are.

    I took some other pics of the Schrade but the didn't come out well.  I will take some more when I have time.

    The 2nd knife is Italian and at least 50 years old tho it looks like a NOS.

    On the handles it has a Litho Italian scene.  One side has a canal and bridge.  The other side has a Gondola with a Gondolier!  That side says 'Ricordo di Venezia'.  I don't know what that means but I would guess something about a scene in Venice...maybe.

    The tang says 'INOX' on one side, nothing on the other.

    It opens with a small button after pushing the unlock slide, and it opens with quite a pop!!

  • Clint Thompson


    Great looking knives.

  • Lee Saunders

    Comment by Lee Saunders1 second ago           Delete Comment

    Ah ha!  Ricordo di Venezia (the name of my Italian switchblade) is Italian for Memories of Venice.  Here is a classical guitar song with the same name and some real nice Venice canal scenes.

    Made me flick my blade!!


  • Lee Saunders

    Trying to work my way thru I book I got last week.  Some of you guys probably have it.  Called Switchblades of Italy by Tim Zinser and a few others.  Nice book but a hard read. lots of history in the thing.  But that's a good thing to learn when you're talking about antiques.  It's nice to like what you like.  But it's hella good to know the "why".  Now I have to find me a couple of those old Cadillacs---the original Latama's.  Man those things are sweet.

  • Clint Thompson

    I am always looking for a good quality auto knife of the Italian and German flavor.  I have several new USA made.  Good info on the book.  Thanks.

  • Lee Saunders

    Wow that knife I posted a few days ago....the Ricordo di Venezia ??  It's on page 102 of the book I am reading, Switchblades of Italy.  It's a sweet surprise to see your knife in a book.

    It was made for the Venice tourist trade,

    not one of the top-rank Latama's.  I sure would like to grab one of those at this site---http://latama.net/VintageKnives.html

    Anybody got one they wanna trade??  They are so beautiful I may have to stretch my budget and bbuy a cheap one.



  • Lee Saunders

    My New Books and Knife!!

    I talked about the fact I had bought a book from the author called Antique American Switchblades, plus a knife that he had for sale at a good price since I was buying a copy of the book.

    I jumped with no net!  But I did read reviews on the book first.

    So today I am updating you on the purchase and posting a few photos for you.

    First the book cover with the knife, a Shur-Snap Colonial NOS closed.  Then a pic with the knife open, then a close-up of the open knife on top of the partial book autograph the author included.

    The last pic is a book the author was nice enough to throw in about George Schrade switchblades called George Schrade 1860-1940.  He says he got a few of these books from Schrade's son and says they are NOS as well.  My copy certainly looks it.

    It's rare to find me  recommend the author of a book, but Mark is a hecka nice guy and I recommend his book to those of you that collect or just like American switchblades.

    He has some more knives for sale including more Colonial NOS so if you are interested in talking to him about knives and/or hiss book, get with me and I will give you the info.

    Heck I will probably buy another one my ownself an will post some future photos


  • Lee Saunders

    I have to correct something from the post about the Mark Erickson book and the Schrade book he sent me.  He got it from a Great Grandson of George Schrade and the ook had been published in the 1980s.

    That is all.  I'm out!

  • Lee Saunders

    Got some new switchblades to add to my growing collection last week.

    Bought these 2 from Mark Erickson, author of Antique American Switchblades, Identification and Value Guide.

    I think I got good buys for the knives.

    The top knife is a brown swirl that some call Root Beer color.  It is a Shur-Snap knive and is identified on the tang as SHUR SNAP over Colonial over U.S.A.  There are no other markings, the spring works well open and closing.  It is 7 inches open with a 3.25 inch blade.

    The second is a goldish jigged handles of some kind.  Seems bone but I am not sure.  This knife is identified on the tang as PRESS BUTTON over Knife Co. overWalden, N.Y.  It measures 6 3/8ths open with a 2.75 inch blade.  It's a fat knife.  The handle is 7/8ths inch wide compared to the Shur Snap which is like 3/8ths.

  • wayne schmertzler

  • wayne schmertzler