United States Army Model 1917 Trench Knife

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The Minnesota Historical Society preserves and makes available a wide range of materials chronicling Minnesota's history and culture. The goals of the Collections Department are to collect and preserve; provide access and interpretation; and engage in education and outreach. This blog is a tool to share these stories and let people know what is happening in the department.

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United States Army Model 1917 Trench Knife

By: Lori Williamson | WW1 Daybook | December 7, 2017

This United States Army Model 1917 trench knife and leather scabbard was used by Emil B. Thompson of Saint Paul, Minnesota, during World War I. Trench knives were used in hand-to-hand combat encounters, which often included trench raids. This model, with its triangular blade, could be used primarily as a stabbing weapon. The knife is stamped "U.S. / L.F. & C. / 1917" on the forward force of the upper guard and scratched on the back of the grip is "Thompson" and on the front "351st". The olive drab scabbard has an iron throat and tip, each stamped "MS", and has two tabs at the mouth of the throat which would attach it to a belt with hooks.

Trench Knife

Citation: Minnesota Historical Society Collections. 65.155.2.A,B