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US Army Vintage Matching Set Pair 2nd Lieutenant Bars Collar Insignia Scrweback
$9.95
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Original WWII USAAF Army Air Force Navigator 3 Wings Sterling Silver Pin
$35.51
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WW2 US Army Air Defense Artillery Schl DUI DI unit crest NSM HM pinback HTF
$9.76
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Atlantic Base Command DI WWII Army crest DUI PINBACK NHM 1930s 40s RARE
$8.88
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Army Air Force DI Pin 7th Air Force cb nhm 28mm modern
$3.16
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Army Air Force DI Pin 12th Air Force cb nhm 29mm modern
$3.16
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Army Air Force DI Pin Engineer Specialist transparent wheel cb nhm 26mm
$3.96
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US Army 112th Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback NS Meyer
$4.00
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US Army Vintage Matching Set Pair 1st Lieutenant Bars Collar Insignia
$6.95
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US Army 91st Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Pinback Polk
$3.00
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US Army 813th Engineer BN Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia pinback Gemsco
$3.00
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US Army 2nd Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Pinback NS Meyer
$3.00
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Army DI Pin 813th Engineer Battalion lt green tree pb GEMSCO
$4.76
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US Army 112th Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia pinback NS Meyer
$3.00
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US Army 112th Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia pinback Gemsco
$3.00
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RARE WW2 US Army Navy E Award Badge Pin Sterling marked
$7.99
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WW2 ARMY COMBAT INFANTRY BADGE STERLING CLUTCH BACK
$55.00
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US Army Engineer Replacement Training Center Crest Pin DIClutchback Polk
$2.00
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US Army Engineer Replacement Training Center Crest Pin DIPinback Polk
$3.00
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US Army 3rd Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback NS Meyer
$4.00
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Army DI Pin Kemper Military Academy ROTC double screw posts
$3.96
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Army DI Pin University of Nebraska ROTC sb Meyer
$3.96
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US Army 85th Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia pinback D23
$3.00
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US Army infantry insignias
$7.95
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US Army 567th Service and Supply BN Crest Pin DI Clutchback Dondero
$6.00
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VINTAGE GOOD CONDUCT BUTTON HOLE STUD PIN WWII ARMY WORLD WAR II
$7.50
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US 17th Army Security Agency Field Station Crest PinDIClutchback NHM G RARE
$8.50
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ORIGINAL US ARMY QUALIFICATION MARKSMAN 2ND CLASS GUNNER BADGE MACHINE GUN BAR
$2.99
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US Army 725th Maintenance BN Crest Pin DI Insignia Clutchback NS Meyer
$2.00
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US Army 142nd Signal Corps Crest Pin DI Insignia Clutchback NS Meyer
$2.00
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US ARMY 502nd PARACHUTE INFANTRY REGIMENT CREST DUI STRIKE
$1.99
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US ARMY 17TH AIRBORNE DIVISION PIN
$16.00
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US Army 42nd Quartermaster Co NY State Guard DI Crest DUI Insignia CB Newcome
$23.00
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US Army 1st Maintenance Company Crest Pin DI Insignia Clutchback NS Meyer
$2.00
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High Quality 1920 30s US Army Officers Signal Corps Collar Pin Screw Back
$23.50
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US Army Quartermaster Research Development Pin DUI DI Insignia pinback Meyer
$3.00
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US Army 102nd Quartermaster Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback Newcome
$4.00
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US ARMY WORLD WAR II COLLAR ENSIGNIA ARMOR AND UNIT CRESTS 7274 glcw
$9.99
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US Army 4th Motor Repair Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback NS Meyer
$4.00
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US Army 113th Motor Repair Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback NHM
$4.00
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2 US Army Enlisted Chemical Corps Collar Insignia Dome Clutchback
$3.00
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WWII US Army Sterling Silver Marksman Pin Small Bore Rifle
$16.96
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US Army 5th Supply Transport Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback NS Meyer
$4.00
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US Army 51st Signal Bn Crest Pin DI Insignia Screwback Gaunt England
$4.00
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NEW OLD STERLING SILVER WWII ERA ARMY NAVY E PRODUCTION AWARD PIN PLUS BONUS
$19.95
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WW2 ARMY AIR CORP 2 BOMBER AERIAL GUNNER WINGS STERLING SILVER NICE LOOK
$100.00
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12 WW2 US Military Army Enlisted Infantry Collar Brass Insignia Pins Disc
$29.99
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Matching Pair WW2 US Army Officers Quartermaster Corps Collar Pins Meyers Shield
$23.50
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VINTAGE US ARMY OF CORPS ENGINEERS WWII INGSIGNIA PIN CASTLE MILITARY
$19.50
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US Army 791st Transportation Bn Crest Pin DI Insignia Clutchback NS Meyer
$2.00
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US Army 73rd Signal Bn Crest Pin DI Insignia Clutchback E 25
$2.00
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VINTAGE WWII US ARMY AIR FORCE USAAF GUNNER BOTH STERLING SWEETHEART PIN 6060
$49.95
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WWII US ARMY AIR FORCE USAAF AIR SERVICE COMMAND CHAIN SWEETHEART PIN 6094
$24.95
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VINTAGE WWII US ARMY AIR FORCE LARGE STERLING SWEETHEART PIN 5962
$19.95
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VINTAGE WWII US ARMY WITH STAR ON CIRCLE SWEETHEART PIN 5876
$14.95
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US Army Chemical Corps School Crest Pin DI Insignia Clutchback G 23 Green
$2.00
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US Army Chemical Corps School Crest Pin DI Insignia Clutchback G 22
$2.00
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US Army Chemical Corps School Crest Pin DI Insignia Pinback NSMeyer
$3.00
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Vtg WWII US Army Marksman Rifle Pin Medal Award Military Sterling Silver Uniform
$29.99
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US Army 1st Chemical Company Crest Pin DI Insignia Screwback NSMeyer
$5.85
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US Army 1st Chemical Bn Crest Pin DI DUI Insignia Screwback NSMeyer
$4.00
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US Army 2nd Chemical Regiment Crest Pin DI DUI Insignia Screwback Meyer
$4.00
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WW2 ARMY AIR CORPS AIR CREW CLUTCH BACKS tested as sterling silver
$105.00
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US Army Chemical Replacement Training Ctr Crest Pin DI InsigniaSterling NHM
$9.25
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US Army Chemical Command Sweetheart Pin Insignia Pinback NHM
$2.00
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WWII US Army Collar Disc US 349
$9.99
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US Army 23rd Quartermaster Bn DI Crest DUI Insignia Screwback NS Meyer
$4.00
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VTG Quality Made WW2 Propeller Prop Wing Pin Badge US Army Marked Utica NY
$18.00
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WW2 US Army 2nd Lieutenant 2LT rank bar single Beverly Craft snow flake
$5.25
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Japan Japanese Nippon War Army Rising Sun Class Officer Uniform Medal Badge Pin
$21.99
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US Army 38th Transportation Bn Crest Pin DI Insignia Clutchback Poellath
$3.00
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WWII Cello Pinback Button US Army Ordnance makerBastian Bros 25mm ME323
$12.95
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Vintage WW2 Army Wool Brown W Red Piping Harrison Cap With Sterling Silver Pin
$19.99
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Antique Sterling Silver US Army military USA Staff Sergeant Sweetheart pin
$14.95
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US Army 537th Transportation Bn Crest Pin DI Insignia Pinback NHM
$3.00
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US Army 28th Transportation Bn Crest Pin DI DUI Insignia clutchback NS Meyer
$3.00
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US Army 29th Transportation Bn Crest Pin DI DUI Insignia pinback NS Meyer
$3.00
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US Army 24th Supply Transport Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback NS Meyer
$4.00
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US Army 21st Support Command Crest Pin DI DUI Insignia Clutchback G23
$2.00
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E for Excellence WWII Pin Sterling Silver Enamel Army Navy Production Equipment
$11.99
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US Army 118th Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback NHM
$4.00
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US Army 106th Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Pinback NHM
$3.00
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US Army 116th Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Screwback Robbins
$4.00
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Nice US Army 78th Engineer Bn Crest Pin DUI DI Insignia Pinback NS Meyer
$3.00
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US Army 118th Medical BN Insignia Pin Crest DI DUI Clutchback NHM
$2.00
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US Army 47th Medical BN Insignia Pin Crest DI DUI Clutchback R25
$2.00
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US Army 32nd Medical Brigade Insignia Pin Crest DI DUI clutchback G 23
$2.00
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US Army 113th Medical Bn Insignia Pin Crest DI DUI clutchback Susco S 21
$2.00
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Army Pin

A Short History of the Swiss Army Knife

The story begins in 1891 with Karl Elsener, owner of a company that made surgical equipment. He founded the Association of Swiss Master Cutlers, to supply pocket knives to the Swiss army, who at this time were using German-made ones. It took Elsener five years to come up with what he called the "Soldier's knife" (known today in Switzerland as the "Offiziersmesser"). With suggestions from an engineer friend, Jeannine Keller, the original model had a wooden handle, and came with a blade, screwdriver, can opener, and a punch. It was actually made available to the army before 1896, but Elsener was not happy with the device, and eventually was able to put blades on both sides by using a special mechanism using a single spring for both blades. This allowed him to also add a corkscrew.

Elsener's company, Victorinox, was the single supplier of multi-function pocketknives until 1893. A company in the French-speaking area of Switzerland called Paul Boechat & Cie began to market a similar product. The company was later bought by its general manager, Theodore Wenger, and the company name changed to Wenger. By 1908, the Swiss government decided to split the contract for knives between the two companies, partly to appease German and French-speaking factions in the country, and partly to stimulate competition (and lower the prices of the knives). The two companies came to an agreement over marketing, with Victorinox using the phrase "The Original Swiss Army Knife" and Wenger using "The Genuine Swiss Army Knife". The following year (1909), the Swiss army began decorating the knives with the Swiss national symbol (a white cross). Victorinox uses a shield with bilateral symmetry around the cross, while Wenger uses a slightly rounded square with quadrilateral symmetry. The Swiss army uses knives with a simpler bilaterally-symmetric shield.

Victorinox switched to stainless steel blades and tools in 1921. It is believed Wenger did so as well around the same time, but company sources are inconclusive about the exact date. The knives were sold in PX stores on US army bases from 1945 to 1949. In fact it is believed that the term "Swiss Army Knife" was coined in English by American G.I.s during World War II, because they couldn't pronounce the Swiss name "Offiziersmesser".

Today, Swiss army knives contain a multitude of tools, including: several blades, a bottle-opener/screwdriver/wire stripper, can opener/small screwdriver, tweezers, toothpick, corkscrew, phillips-head screwdriver, nail file, scissors, saw, hook, magnifying glass, ballpoint pen, fish scaler, pliers, keychain, USB flash memory, digital clock, digital altimeter, LED light, laser pointer mp3 player, and a brass spacer in the official army model, which allows assembly of the SIG 550 and SIG 510 assault rifles (with the screwdriver and reamer extended, the knife becomes a restraint to the firing pin during the lock assembly). Wenger has a special model which contains all the tools they make. The device is nearly twice as wide as it is long, and retails for around $1,200.

The knives are also available in many other colors besides the traditional red. Black, blue, white, pink, camouflage, phosphorescent yellow and many others, in both opaque or transparent. Also metal and wood cladding. The model actually used by the Swiss army is in fact aluminum, and not red at all.

On April 26, 2005, Victorinox acquired the Wenger company, becoming again the single supplier of knives to the Swiss army. The company intends to keep the Wenger brand alive for knives sold to consumers.

About the Author

Michael Carpenter operates two websites that sell Swiss Army Knives:
Army Knife Swiss (US) and
Army Knife Swiss (UK).

Army Pin
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