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Vietnam Era Bowie Knives

Discussion in 'Knives' started by John6185, Sep 9, 2017.

  1. John6185

    John6185 Sharpshooter

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    I have three of these knives of those carried by those in the bush while in Vietnam. They're about 10" blade, very heavy. Bought these fairly reasonable but wish I'd have bought a couple when I was in Vietnam . 101st Airborne had them and can't remember the cost back then. I don't want to sell them, I'm reminded of Vietnam everything I look at one. With the relaxed laws now in Oklahoma I guess I could carry one-but I won't.
    There is a story of a 2Lt in charge of a squad that had been out in the bush for quite some time and he had never of these knives and he'd sharpen the Bowie knife and the troops would laugh behind his back and talk about how he thought he was John Wayne or a similar figure. Well, as the story goes, they were fighting some Vietnam Cong (Charlies) and the 2Lt run out of ammo and was reloading and three Vietnam Cong had him and we're trying to drag him in the jungle and he whipped out that Bowie that everyone was making fun of and whacked away on the enemy and they turned the Lt loose and ran screaming and bleeding. The guys that made fun of the Lt stopped their talk and they began to carry these Bowie knives. Supposedly a true story. 15049933053301358691174.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2017
  2. D. Hargrove

    D. Hargrove Sharpshooter

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    Had a reunion a few years ago at the 101st when I was still active duty, had an oldtimer ask me if we still carried Bowies in combat (responded in the negative). I thought he had lost it, now I see he hadn't. Cool story, thanks.

    [​IMG]
     
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  3. doctorjj

    doctorjj Sharpshooter

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    My dad gave me his that he carried in Vietnam. He was 101st.
     
  4. dennishoddy

    dennishoddy Sharpshooter

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    The early model rifles didn't work. They had to have something.
     
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  5. Hangfire

    Hangfire Sharpshooter

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    John that bowie is a Western W-49.....I've got two of them, with the original drop down sheath like yours, on display boards.

    Every once in awhile they'll show up on Ebay for well over $100.00 if in good shape.
     
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  6. LBnM

    LBnM Sharpshooter

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    I carried a Kabar and a Walther PP, or Browning Hi Power in Vietnam. Lot of history behind that old knife. Still have one I used as a camp knife when I elk hunted. They were hard to hide in civvies which was my usual uniform.
    https://www.kabar.com/most-famous-knife
    1217_h_lg.png
     
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  7. saddlebum

    saddlebum Sharpshooter

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    I wish you would write a book. I'd buy it
     
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  8. John6185

    John6185 Sharpshooter

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    Hangfire, you have a sharp eye, that is indeed a W-49. And I've seen them go for 2-$300 dollars on eBay at times.
     
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  9. doctorjj

    doctorjj Sharpshooter

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    Here's the one my dad said he carried.
     

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  10. CorpsVet

    CorpsVet Sharpshooter

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    I carried a KA-BAR, and still have it
     

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