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Still, switchblades were not Schrade’s only products.The company also made pocket knives for the Boy Scouts and the Navy.True, that was the year brothers George, William, and Louis Schrade set up shop in Walden, New York, but George had been a student of mechanical objects since the mid-1880s, when he spent 10 years in New York City producing the working models inventors were obliged to submit to the U. At the time, the switchblade did not have the negative connotation it does today—that bad-boy reputation would not stain the knife until the 1950s, when the switchblade was depicted in film and fiction as the weapon of choice for hoodlums and pimps (the knife was banned in the U. in 1958, and still remains illegal in many states).Instead, this spring-loaded blade, which would flip open automatically when a button was depressed on the knife’s handle or bolster (the part of the knife that describes the transition from blade to handle) was pitched to consumers as a safety and convenience feature.

After selling his 1892 patent for this knife to Walden Knife Company in 1903, Schrade moved from New York City to Walden in 1904, when he set up Schrade Cutlery Company with his brothers.By 1906, Schrade had improved upon his switchblade by giving it a locking device, and while his brothers managed the business side of the company, George made machines designed to increase his company’s manufacturing quality and efficiency.


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