Danish M1889 Krag-Jorgensen Bayonet, Early Model
Single-fullered spear point blade, forged together with the entire hilt as one piece of steel. Chequered black leather grips secured by two steel rivets. Black leather scabbard with steel mounts . Unique locking mechanism, consisting of an integral locking catch on the scabbard, and sprung release lever on the hilt.
The ricasso of the blade is stamped with a ‘king’s head’ and ‘knight’s helm’ marks, over ‘W. K & C’, which stands for the maker Weyersberg, Kirschbaum & Co. of Solingen, Germany. Below this on the rim of the grip is stamped a crown over ‘91’, which means this bayonet was produced in 1891.
The pommel is stamped on one side with the cancelled item number ‘26430’ and the new item number ‘109095’ and on the other side with two cancelled unit marks, one to the 40th Battalion and the other to the 19th Battalion. The chape finial of the scabbard is stamped with a unit mark to the 35th Battalion.
The leather grips mark this out as the early version of this bayonet, which was made in Germany. The later and more common version was introduced in 1892: made in Denmark, it had wooden grips, which held up better to heavy use and wet conditions. Those bayonets of the early model whose grips wore out also received wooden replacements. The Danes were the first nation to adopt the Norwegian-designed Krag-Jorgensen rifle, followed by the United States and Norway.