Switchblades of the 1940's, 1950's

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Switchblades of the 1940's, 1950's

Post by georgegroot » Sun Sep 22, 2019 8:16 pm

Have been reading a lot of police novels set in the 1940's-1950's. So many of the characters, Mexican gangsters, Chinese Tong, law enforcement, etc. etc. carry switchblades. I was wondering what the switchblade of choice would be? Italian, American etc. ? Also, my mother grew up in that era and would tell me stories about the zoot suiters and how they all carried switchblades. Same question, what kind? My interest in switchblades began when I was a kid in the 50's and 60's and I only had tv and movies to go by which may have only used what was in the prop room. Would like to hear from any switchblade historians out there.

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Re: Switchblades of the 1940's, 1950's

Post by JulesVane » Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:37 am

I'm fairly sure the novels and stories exaggerated the carry of switchblades just as much as the movies did. I wasn't around back in the late 40', early 50's, but I'm fairly sure when they were legal and readily available, they probably didn't have quite the same mystique as we have today being they are "taboo" now (due to those novels, stories & movies). Just my thoughts on carry and could be very wrong.

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Re: Switchblades of the 1940's, 1950's

Post by john » Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:54 pm

All I can recall is seeing what looked like Italian stilettos from those old movies.
Modern movies, more recent, still use the classic Italian stiletto, but I’ve seen otf’s and German made lever locks.
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Re: Switchblades of the 1940's, 1950's

Post by Bill DeShivs » Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:55 am

There were an awful lot of American switchblades sold in that era (and before), too.
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Re: Switchblades of the 1940's, 1950's

Post by TazmanTom » Tue Sep 24, 2019 2:02 pm

We bought swithblades in the "dime stores " in the 50s and 60s. American, of course.

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