Infographic: History of the Pocketknife 600B.C.- A.D. 1990


Jake sent me a cool infograhic article that traces the history of the pocketknife from this Austrian example from ~600BC through modern times. (from

I have my first guide trip in the morning, and it was a short notice trip. My gear is still a mess and I need to finish getting things shipshape before I turn in for the night. Conveniently, Jake Middleton sent me a neat article/infographic on the “History of the Pocketknife” from the site It is fairly general with regards to depth of detail but interesting nonetheless.  I learned several little factoids that I have filed away in an undamaged brain-cell. It has some nice photography, and is certainly worth a few minutes of your time.

I got a chuckle because one of the knives they used as an example was the first ever example of a Swiss Army-style knife from Ancient Rome. I wrote about that one in more detail a while back. It was neat to come across this unique tool from a different source.

Apropos of nothing at all, despite my graduate studies in Archaeology I am using the terms B.C. and A.D. During my decade or so of study, they were replaced by the terms BCE (Before Common Era) and CE (Common Era). This always chafed me as it is in my mind simply PC bullshit, and I am an evil, white, heterosexual Christian male, and therefor am responsible for all injustice throughout the history of the world. I was threatened with an incomplete while in Grad School at Kent State if I did not change to the “approved” terminology. I relented in the interest of not getting kicked out of the program, but here at TTAK, I reign as Benevolent Dictator. So the PC police can go sod themselves.

I hope that you all enjoy the infographic. I am going back to my gear. The 2015 season starts tomorrow. Game On!

btw, if anyone feels like following Smoky Mountain Gillies on Twitter, I can be found at @MountainGillie. Drop me a line if you are so inclined.



  1. Mike L says:

    Very neat info and website !

    As an aside, folks largely assume ancient means primitive and honestly, stupid. Quite the contrary. BC people were just like us but in different culture. My retort is always to direct semi open minds to the Antikythera device. If anyone can say 2000 years ago was primitive after reading about it, well I give up.

    1. I watched a documentary on that one time. Blows my mind. Both in terms of the function and the extreme craftsmanship with tools that were in fact primitive. There aren’t many folks who could perform such precise work today with that toolkit.

  2. Sam L. says:

    Primitive, perhaps, but not stupid. Technology took years to develop.

  3. David says:

    Primitive does not even mean what most people think it does – or rather, it has taken on a different meaning or nuance. Even “primitive” people groups accomplished alot. The first African pyramids were built w/ early bronze age tech. Polynesians went vast distances at sea, possibly even to the Americas, without metal. Most people under estimate or under value earlier generations of man rather that the other way around.

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Infographic: History of the Pocketknife 600B.C.- A.D. 1990

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