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The Iron Mistress (1952)
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Anyone know the real maker of the knife in the movie The Iron Mistress (1952)?

Jim Bowie and His Knife Resurrected at Paramount in 'The Iron Mistress'
 
Posts: 2591 | Location: Lone Star State | Registered: 12 November 2010Reply With Quote
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I think it was made by John Nelson Cooper. He did a number of knives for movies.
 
Posts: 35 | Registered: 28 July 2009Reply With Quote
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Cooper didn't make it. He only moved to Ca in the mid 60s.

According to this source on Bo Randall from Bladeforums who contacted Alan Ladd about the movie knife, it (I understand there were quite a few versions) was made by studio technicians, probably not even tempered.

quote:
Midway through 1957 Bo wrote to Alan Ladd, at Warner Brothers Studio. He had a couple of questions to pose, the major one being the actual dimensions of the Iron Mistress used in the movie. The reply came from Mr. Ladd himself and he provided the dimensions for the original movie bowie. Mr. Ladd stated that the original knife used in "The Iron Mistress" was made by studio technicians and was supposedly copied from the one at the Alamo. The dimensions provided were: Total length of knife -- 16 inches, blade -- 10-1/2 inches, handle -- 5 inches, width of blade -- 2-1/2 inches, blade thickness -- 3/8 inch, and guard between blade and handle -- 3-1/2 inches. These dimensions show that the Randall Model 12 Heavy, later named the Smithsonian, was very close in size as well as shape to the one used in "The Iron Mistress" motion picture. Bo and Bill did a super job, starting with only one frame of film from the movie.


BTW Voorhis makes a very creditable copy of the Iron Mistress, some of which show up on ebay from time to time and can usually be had for around $500 or less. OTOH a Randall Smithsonian can be had for around $750 on ebay. Because of the movie this is a popular design, quite a few makers made copies, including Cooper. I just saw a catalog of Cooper's listing the cost of his Iron Mistress Bowie for $2200. They can be had much cheaper in the after market with patience.


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Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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The best copy of the Iron Mistress was done by a knifemaker named Yeattes(sp?). He has since retired. Gil Hibben does a pretty nice one, but he does not use 3/8" thick blade material. Voorhis does incredible work, especially polishing, but his blades are just a bit over 1/8" thick...had one to go with my Randall Smithsonian, but it was just too thin for me.
Guns&Ammo annual had a great article on the knife several years ago, I think in the late 80's or early 90's. The knife was made by a prop man on the set of the movie and later used in both the TV series The Adventures of Jim Bowie and the movie Alamo starring John Wayne as Davy Crockett and Richard Widmark as James Bowie.
 
Posts: 1511 | Location: Colorado, USA | Registered: 11 November 2002Reply With Quote
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I have made two blades both with the movie prop blade in mind.
I have not got the tip to come out just like the prop blade looks. The blade thickness I started out with was 1/4" to have plenty to work with. It is a bit of a challange to copy.
 
Posts: 2591 | Location: Lone Star State | Registered: 12 November 2010Reply With Quote
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i remember thinking how beautiful that knife was when i saw that movie as a kid. i don't suppose anybody can ressurect a picture of it and post it. please do if you can.
 
Posts: 43 | Registered: 22 April 2006Reply With Quote
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Here's an article about Bowie which shows the actual prop knife used in the movie (at least according to the article):

Bowie


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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Here's an old thread on Blade Forums about the "Iron Mistress" Bowie, unfortunately many of the pics no longer show up BUT fortunately on page 3 there is a copy of an article which shows the guys who actually made the original prop knives for the movies, holding them.

Iron Mistress Bowie


xxxxxxxxxx
When considering US based operations of guides/outfitters, check and see if they are NRA members. If not, why support someone who doesn't support us? Consider spending your money elsewhere.

NEVER, EVER book a hunt with BLAIR WORLDWIDE HUNTING or JEFF BLAIR.

I have come to understand that in hunting, the goal is not the goal but the process.
 
Posts: 17099 | Location: Texas USA | Registered: 07 May 2001Reply With Quote
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http://img.photobucket.com/alb...oso/Album2/mist1.jpg
This is a pic of the original movie knife and the "Arkansas Toothpick" that "Bloody Jack" Sturdevent(sp?) used during a knife fight scene in the movie.
 
Posts: 1511 | Location: Colorado, USA | Registered: 11 November 2002Reply With Quote
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In God I trust. Everyone else keep your hands where I can see them.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2NAP8fXChS4
 
Posts: 2591 | Location: Lone Star State | Registered: 12 November 2010Reply With Quote
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If I recall correctly; Joe Musso now owns almost all the " Iron Mistress" bowie knives used in the movie. Eight or nine pieces total.
The knives were fabricated by propman, Authur Rhoades and designed by art director John Beckman.
All this is according to Mr. Musso who is probably the authority on the movie and the knives in it.
M
 
Posts: 68 | Location: oklahoma | Registered: 28 July 2006Reply With Quote
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