The 1973 Smith & Wesson Texas Ranger Bowie Knife designed by Blackie Collins
In 1972 Smith & Wesson was approached by the Texas Ranger Commission to build a commemorative revolver in honor of their 150th anniversary. While attending these meetings, Roy Jenks of Smith & Wesson Collectors Association, and a Smith & Wesson Historian, proposed what could be offered in the way of a commemorative handgun. At this time, the Commission was also considering the purchase of a commemorative service knife. Roy, and John Wilson, a member of the Texas Commission, developed a design, similar to an early style Texas knife, for a Bowie knife. This pattern was presented to Smith & Wesson and the Bowie knife, designed by Blackie Collins, was modified closer to the style originally used and purposed by Mr. Wilson. Smith & Wesson felt an excellent entry into the knife market would be the Texas Ranger Commemorative Bowie knife.
A package deal consisting of the Smith & Wesson Model 19 revolver and a Bowie knife was presented. The idea was accepted, production was initiated, and in 1973 Smith & Wesson announced the Texas Ranger Commemorative. Production plans called for the manufacture of 8,000 knives cased with a Smith & Wesson model 19 revolver.
In addition, 12,000 individual knives in their own presentation case were offered starting at number 8001. The Texas Ranger knife like all the early Smith & Wesson knives, was produced from a forged 440 series stainless steel and handcrafted in a series of 47 different manufacturing operations. Each knife was serial numbered on the top of the blade beginning at serial number TR1 through TR20,000. Information from the well-researched book, "The Knives of Smith & Wesson", by C.E. Rinke. This knife is numbered; TR16947.
This knife comes in the original cardboard box which contained both the knife in the wood presentation case, plus the original sheath in the S&W blue box. It is unusual to find them together in the original packaging box. The knife has not been cleaned of any tarnish on the brass. The knife has never been used or sharpened.
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