icon for Home page
icon for Kid's Home page
icon for Digital Collection
icon for Activities
icon for Turns Exhibit
icon for In the Classroom
icon for Chronologies
icon for My Collection

Online Collection

Detail 1
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
Contact us for information about using this image.

front
front


label levels:

In 1840, with the advent of the pioneer migration westward, John Russell began the manufacture of hunting and skinning knives along the banks of the Green River in Deerfield, (later annexed to Greenfield), Massachusetts. The knives had a nine inch steel blade and a wooden handle and were shipped dull so their owners could sharpen them as they wished. The knives' reputation grew rapidly as the demand for them increased with the western migration and trade with Native groups. Between 1840 and 1860, Russell's Green River Works produced 720,000 knives for the American west. Disputes were often settled with a Green River knife, the personal weapon of nearly every scout, hunter, miner, and trapper. To "give it to 'em up to the Green River" meant to bury a knife in your opponent's belly up to the trade mark stamped on the blade.

 

top of page

Hunting and Skinning Knives manufactured by J. Russell & Company Green River Works

creator   J. Russell and Company/ Green River Works
date   c. 1860
location   Deerfield, Massachusetts
width   1.0"
height   10.0"
process/materials   steel
item type   Tools/Fishing and Trapping Tools & Equipment
accession #   #M.63


Look Closer icon My Collection icon Detailed info icon


ecard icon Send an e-Postcard of this object



See Also...

Painting of J. Russell & Company Green River Works in 1834

Russell Cutlery Company Birds-Eye View

John Russell Cutlery Works, Turners Falls, Mass.

Russell Cutlery Factory

Barlow Knives manufactured by the John Russell Cutlery Company

Knife


button for Side by Side Viewingbutton for Glossarybutton for Printing Helpbutton for How to Read Old Documents

 

Home | Online Collection | Things To Do | Turns Exhibit | Classroom | Chronologies | My Collection
About This Site | Site Index | Site Search | Feedback