I recently was invited and visited Bill Bagwell for lunch and an afternoon at his home in Texas. First let me say that he is a very gracious host and it was an absolute pleasure to spend an afternoon with the master of custom combat Bowies. While I was there I shared photos of one of my Bagwells that is quite old and frankly so old that it is likely unrecognizable to most Bagwell collectors who don’t know much about Bill’s early work and haven’t seen his early catalogs. This particular blade is a pre1974 dagger that Bill made with a mirror polished blade and an ebony handle and a brass guard. Bill was floored to see the knife and said that it is quite possibly one of two (or possibly the oldest) Bagwell knife that he is aware is still in existence. It also has the original crooked “B” stamp on the ricasso which was the first stamp he used when he began forging blades in his original coal fired forge. Of course the carbon steel blade is old but (and as a testament to Bill’s craftsmanship) is in remarkably near mint condition despite being at least 47 years old (Bill told me he still has an original 8x10 black and white of him with the blade during a photo shoot in 1973). Bill made very few daggers during his career and in this style and type he made “exactly one”. Of course the blade being as old as it was no longer had the original sheath and Bill said that he would like to make it a new proper sheath for it but in the original style. To my surprise he and his wife Sidra put together the sheath in lighting fast time and I received a call this past Sunday from Bill that the sheath was finished and would be shipping out the next day. He made the sheath in the same style that it originally came and even custom turned the frog on his lathe to closely resemble the original although it was from entirely from memory since he didn’t have an original to copy. Needless to say the sheath arrived today and I couldn’t be more pleased. Bill is a genuinely stand up guy and it is my honor and privilege to have gotten to know he and Sidra. Anyone else have any classics to include? I’d love to see more. Enjoy the photos gentlemen and thanks again Bill.