Interesting KA-BAR knives facts:

  • KA-BAR has its origins in Tidioute, PA where Wallace Brown begins the Union Razor Co in 1898.
  • Wallace Brown was a relative of the Case family (mother Emma Case).
  • The name is changed to Union Cutlery Co in 1909.
  • The factory is moved to Olean, NY in 1911 due to the attractive tax incentives.
  • An Alaskan hunter is able to save his own life from an attacking bear by using a Union Cutlery Co hunting knife.  After killing (KA) the bear (BAR), the hunter sent the bear skin to the Wallace Brown and the brand KA-BAR was born.
  • KA-BAR is first used on knives in 1923.
  • Many fixed blade fighting / hunting knives during WWII and gains additional popularity and name recognition.
  • The Union Cutlery Co name is dropped and officially changes its name to KA-BAR in 1952.
  • Early knives (pre-WWII) bearing “dogs-head” shields are especially prized by collectors today.  These knives are especially sought after by collectors today.

The KA-BAR story - Documentary

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