This is a Model 1904 Springfield Arsenal Made and serial numbered Hospital Corps Bolo Knife, one of the more enigmatic and mysterious military knives issued to American troops from 1904 to 1914. Designed for use by the U.S. Army Medical Corps, there have been many stories about their intended use- everything from clearing brush to performing battlefield amputations. One thing that is not unclear is that these huge 17 ½” overall length knives were painstakingly manufactured with bright steel blades, brass double guards, walnut handles with finger grooves and brass rivets and butt cap. This example with original leather and brass reinforced sheath with correct steel belt hanger is in excellent condition. The full 12 inch rounded blade retains a sharp edge and shows no signs of cleaning or sharpening. The rear of the blade is clearly and correctly stamped on the left side “S. A.” over a flaming bomb proof stamp and “1910” indicating the date of manufacture. The right side rear is stamped “U S” over the serial number “16037.” All brass fittings show no signs of polishing and display a mellow patina. Excellent handles and fine leather with Rock Island Arsenal markings toward the bottom. A seldom seen U.S. martial edged weapon that is now 118 years old.