The White Shadow Dojo is a Martial Arts school run by Gwynne and David in western New York. This blog features information on our book "The Rhythm of One", our class offerings, a calendar of events, an edged weapons forum, articles on knife design, and a community space for the research and dissemination of Martial Arts. "Sometimes irreverant, often opinionated, always brutally honest."

Friday, August 26, 2011

Bit By the Bowie Bug?

First impressions can often be wrong. For some reason a description of the book Bowie Knife Fights, Fighters and Fighting Techniques by Paul Kirchner turned me off buying it. That was a big mistake. I finally bought a copy from Paladin Press and I am having a great read of it. It has 376 pages of well annotated tales of Bowie knife usage and the men who made it both Legendary and often Disreputable. Scalawags, murderers, thieves, slaves and slave hunters, Southern Aristocrats and redneck butchers: the Bowie knife was an equalizer when few men carried Colts.

I am only a third of the way through Mr. Paul Kirchner’s book and I highly recommend it to anyone interested in the history or use of this iconic American weapon. The amount of research required to put together a book like this is daunting. If there are any shortcomings at all to the book it is the lack of photos. It does have a number of nicely done sketches to illustrate a few of the stories. If its Bowie knife photos you want you will need to spend a king’s ransom ($80 or more) for the book “The Bowie Knife: Unsheathing an American legend” by Norm Flayderman. Flayderman’s book is also worth the money if you are a true knife aficionado. I would suggest buying both books and spending the coming winter reading them. Then once you have consumed them purchase the two books on Bowie Knife techniques by Dwight McLemore and you will have caught a serious case of the Bowie Bug. It only gets worse because I can steer you to a few custom Bowie Knife makers and fine instructors to suck the last penny out of your life’s savings. Just teasing, sort of. Once you catch the Bowie bug there is no known cure.


Dan said...

Looks interesting Dave, thanks for the recommendation. Glad to see you posting again too! I hope all is well and you and yours are out of harms way (with the storm and all).

knife-fighter said...

Thanks Dan. Looks like we are far enough west to not be seriously affected. But I'm checking my BOB and oranizing gear just in case the storm veers west.