In 1827 an Arkansas plantation owner named Rezin Pleasant Bowie was attacked by a bull. Rezin tried to stab the bull in the head, but his knife could not pierce the bull’s skull. Rezin managed to survive nonetheless, and in his quest for a more reliable knife he had an old file ground down to create a large single-edged knife. The blade was over 23cm (9in) long and 4cm (1.5in) wide, and it was fitted with a cross guard and simple wooden grip. Rezin gave a knife of this form to his brother James, who later that same year was involved in the famous “sandbar fight” at Vidalia, Louisiana, on the Mississippi River. James was shot and stabbed, but still managed to use his brother’s knife to disembowel one assailant, wound another and chase off a third. The local press reported the fight, along with details of James Bowie’s unusually large knife, and a legend began.
“Jim” Bowie’s fame increased in 1829 when he wounded and then spared a man in a knife fight. That episode in itself would perhaps not have proved newsworthy but for the fact that shortly thereafter Bowie was attacked by three associates of his defeated opponent. He apparently decapitated one and disembowelled another. The third fled.
The knife that Jim Bowie used in 1829 was a new version that he had commissioned himself, a modification of his brother Rezin’s original idea. The weapon had a longer blade with a clipped point sharpened on both sides. This design became the basis for the traditional Bowie knife, as it is known today.
Made in Solidworks accurate dimentions and lengths.