Originally and specifically designed for the U. S.
Field Sanitation Corps (later, by time of authorization and issue
to be known as the Hospital Corps, then the Medical Corps), the
M-1887 Hospital Corps Knife was produced at the Springfield Armory.
In 1889, 650 knives were produced. In 1891, the armory produced
There are two distinguishing characteristics between the 1889
(Type I) and the 1892 (Type II) knives. The first type has
panel about 3.5 inches from the guard, and the edge is narrower
near the guard than near the tip. The second type has an etched
panel about 2 inches from the guard, and the edge is nearly
even from guard to near the point.
The principle design
purpose of the M-1887 Hospital Corps Knife was for clearing
cutting branches for field expedient
splints or stretcher poles. Today, these highly sought after
knives are scarce and excellent condition ones are quite rare. Reproductions