Dressed to the Nines: A Gold Quartz Skeleton Knife
by Doug Growitz
The pocket knife with sparkling handles and oval segmented display panel featured here draws the attention of even the most casual observer. The knife becomes even more interesting and historically significant when we delve beyond our first blush of awe to learn more details and, ultimately, some of its history. So, let’s do that.
This double gunstock pattern is 33/4” closed and has a total of four panels of gold quartz (naturally-occurring native gold in a quartz matrix) set into a gold or gold-plated interframe; the front two panels are separated by a gold middle panel with an oval glass display containing eight sections of minerals and ore samples, and the rear panels are separated by a slab of what may be dark grey silver ore with gold bands on each side. The bolsters are banded agate on one side and moss agate on the other side. A thin middle liner separates the knife into two channels. The body components are sharply defined and the gold quartz inserts show little, if any, pocket wear.
The knife has four blades that open and close with half stops: two spear point blades, a spey style blade for the removal of corns and a rounded end variation for same. The blades have swedges on both sides and long nail nicks that extend through the tangs. There are a few scratches and carbon spiders, to hint at its age, but otherwise the blades are full with original crocus finish and factory edges. This knife is virtually unused.
This article appears in the October 2021 issue of KNIFE Magazine. Premium Online Members can view the whole thing by clicking the blue box below.