If I could chose just one single item to carry with me… anywhere, it would be a pocket knife. With a pocket knife I can make things. With a pocket knife I can open things that might otherwise pull open, showering me with their contents. With a pocket knife I can clean a fish, butcher an animal or prepare a meal. I’ve used my pocket knife when doctoring animals and pruning shrubs or tomato plants. I can‘t imagine being without a pocket knife, as I’ve carried one since I was 5.
If I had to choose, I would rather carry a pocket knife than a comb. You might say, “Ah! That explains it!”
For some reason pocket knives have fallen out of favor in much of our society, yet, 100 years ago all men, and probably most women carried one. Use and maintenance of a knife, particularly the pocket knife, is in my opinion, the most basic of skills to be mastered by anyone wishing to achieve some measure of self sufficiency. Homesteading Edu will eventually have a course dedicated just to knives.
In the 1800s many American hotels, after the evening meal, passed out sticks for whittling. Most men loved to whittle in the evening. Taken from The American Boys Handy Book by Daniel Carter Beard, which has a fascinating chapter on boys and their pocket knives.
So, you might think, “Ah! I need a pocket knife! What kind should I get?” Well, I prefer a knife with at least 1 larger and 1 smaller blade. The most important consideration is: do you like it and carry it? Probably the next most important consideration is quality of materials and construction. The feature photo for this posting is a picture with a number of different styles of pocket knife. Most of them I’ve carried myself. In recent years I’ve gravitated toward the smaller, multi bladed knife. Can you guess which one is my wife, Jerreth’s knife?