“Honest Brother” Ken Gahagan is famous for making an exacting recreations of colonial Americana and early American furniture. For the auction he has made a traditional fancy brass, horn filled filigree handled, “Cartouche” knife. Patterned directly on an original knife in his own private collection, Ken strives to get every detail correct, right down to hand forging the tool steel blade to the profile and blade thickness found on his rare original. It is a demanding and special skill to then press and mold traditional horn sheets into the fancy filigree cut outs in the brass handle that make this style of knife the iconic trade item that it is. Back in the hey day of the fur trade “Cartouche” knives like this were very highly prized are rare trade items. Ken’s recreation donated to this year’s auction will be no less rare or prized. Today you will find many of the surviving original Cartouché knives in highly quilled Woodland Indian knife sheaths. The CLA has a great selection of artists who can make a finely quilled sheath that this knife will fit right into.
The CLA Live Auction will be on Friday, August 20th at 4:00 PM.
Copy by T.C. Albert with photo by Bob Webb.