Spring operated 'Nelson' knife, New York, United States, 1845-1855

Made:
1845-1855 in New York county
maker:
A A Marks Company
Spring-operated Nelson' knife. Made by A.A. Marks c.1850.'

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Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Spring-operated Nelson' knife. Made by A.A. Marks c.1850.'
Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Spring-operated "Nelson" knife. Made by A.A. Marks c.1850.

Eating a meal when you have lost an arm can be difficult. To help overcome the difficulties involved, this device – known as a Nelson knife – combines the knife and fork into one tool. It was named after Horatio Nelson (1758-1805), the British naval hero who lost his arm on 1 August 1798 during the Battle of the Nile. Knives of this type were regularly made available to disabled veterans and the design is still on offer today.

Made by A A Marks, an American artificial limb maker, this example is released from its ornate case on a spring mechanism – not unlike a flick knife.

Details

Category:
Orthopaedics
Object Number:
1999-624
type:
knife
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
credit:
Richmond Twickenham and Roehampton Healthcare NHS Trust