This is a truly excellent condition example of the OSS Smatchet one of the “sterile” weapons manufactured during World War II for the Office of Strategic Service (OSS) Command. This intelligence and counter insurgency US government agency was the predecessor to today’s CIA. The knives were intended for use behind the lines by OSS agents, and by indigenous people who were working against the axis powers that were occupying their countries. The knives were produced by the W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Company. Knife maker, researcher and author M.H. Cole established this concretely. In a letter to Cole from the Case Company, dated September 13, 1960, the president of Case notes in part:
“ We have your letter of September 9, as well as your sketch of the Bolo combat knife.
This knife definitely was manufactured by our company as we were the only concern manufacturing this particular knife during World War II. The knife was manufactured for the O.S.S. Services or Office of Strategic Service Command.
The reason our name is not on the knife is due to the fact that they requested it this way so as the country of origin could not be determined.”
This is an EXCELLENT condition example of the Number 2 OSS Smatchet with an equally high condition Number 1 Scabbard. The “Smatchet” has an 11” x 2 ““ pointed bolo style blade, which retains about 95%+ of its original Parkerized finish. The blade retains its factory edge and has never been sharpened. The blade shows only some minor surface scuffs, the result of insertion and removal from the scabbard. There are a couple of very small patches of light surface oxidation present (no pitting or roughness), which could easily be cleaned off, and one very tiny patch of minor finish loss (about ““ long x 1/8” wide) along the edge of the blade. The 3 ““ oval guard retains about the same amount of original Parkerized finish as well. The 5 ““ long handle has a pair of thick walnut grip scales, which are retained by a pair of .40” metal rivets, which retain about 50%+ of their original Parkerizing, mixed with some lightly oxidized discoloration. The 1 15/16” pot metal pommel cap is in wonderful condition as well, and retains traces of a blackened finish. The pommel cap is secured by three pins, and has a hole for a leather lanyard loop. An old leather thong is present in the hole to serve as a lanyard, but I cannot determine if this is the original leather loop or not. The knife is about 16 3/8” in overall length, and weighs 1lb and 12oz, by my fish scale. The knife is retained in an EXCELLENT condition original Number 1 scabbard. The brown leather scabbard is tightly sewn and reinforced with 13 staples along the periphery. The scabbard retains about 95% of its original brown leather scabbard, with some light scuffing and minor handling marks. All of the stitching and hardware is original and complete. The belt loop is in EXCELLENT condition as well. The original closure strap is in place, and is in EXCELLENT condition, with only some light surface crazing on the front of the strap. The original metal snap is in place on the strap and face of the scabbard, and still snaps shut securely.Overall this is simply an EXCELLENT condition example of a scarce WWII OSS Smatchet by the famous Case Cutlery company. These are rarely encountered for sale and even more rarely encountered in this very high level of condition. If you have wanted to add one of these scarce WWII knives to your collection, this one would be nearly impossible to improve upon, and is priced about 10%-20% less than the prices you normally see these knives offered for. SOLD