Have you heard of Jim Bowie? He’s a well-known name in Texas. Jim Bowie was an American frontiersman, explorer, and soldier who lived during the early 19th century. He is perhaps best known for his role in the Texas Revolution and for the iconic knife that bears his name. he fought in the Battle of the Alamo in 1836, where he died alongside Davy Crockett and other defenders. Bowie's reputation was cemented by the knife that he carried, which became known as the "Bowie knife." The knife had a long, curved blade that was designed for use in close combat, and it quickly became popular among frontiersmen and soldiers alike. Overall, Jim Bowie is remembered as a brave and charismatic figure who played an important role in the early history of Texas. The town of Bowie is named for their hero. Maybe y’all need to visit and see the world’s largest Bowie knife. Have you made Texas a destination on your vacations list yet? Maybe it is time for y’all to come visit!
Small towns often have big attractions! Bowie, Texas, is home to the world’s largest bowie knife. Here’s some history and our review.
Jim Bowie is best known for two things: the bowie knife (he was an accomplished fighter with the knife) and that he died, along with Davy Crocket, during the defense of the Alamo. Jim Bowie was born in Kentucky in 1796 and died in 1836.
The city of Bowie, Texas, was incorporated on October 29, 1883. It was a small town overflowing with a variety of unlawful behavior in saloons and brothels in the days of the Wild West. Lawlessness continued until the Hargrove brothers shot two of Bowie’s town marshals. The town decided to clean up and closed the saloons and brothels within 48 hours. New marshals were appointed, and the posts lasted until 1959 when the city hired a chief of police.
Bowie grew because it was connected by railroad to both Denver and Fort Worth. Later Chicago was connected to the small town. The railroad provided an opportunity for a wily entrepreneur and his wife. Amon G. Carter and Mose Johnson started selling chicken and bread sandwiches to travelers who stopped at the train depot. Mose and his wife, Mabel, began their journey in 1904 with just $15 and a shoebox full of baby chicks. The M. Johnson Poultry Ranch became for a time the world’s largest chicken ranch.
Today, Bowie is home to the world’s largest bowie knife, the official knife of the State of Texas. The knife measures over 20 feet long. The blade measures 14 feet, five inches and made from stainless steel. The knife weighs more than 3,000 pounds. They needed a crane to install it. Even the handle is huge and pruned from a bodark tree.
Construction of the knife necessitated some high-level engineering. The knife had to be made to withstand normal seismic activity, winds up to 90 mph and an inch-thick layer of ice. All these weather events occur in Bowie. The project cost around $170,000 and was funded through private donations with one person contributing $100,000.
The knife made it into the Guinness Book of World Records in 2017. It’s officially recognized as the biggest bowie knife in the world. The idea was to increase tourism in the small town, about 5,000 people.
Well, the knife attracted us! Madeline and I stopped because we were curious. The world’s largest bowie knife stands for all to see. There is no admission fee, and you probably won’t encounter large crowds. It served as a fun little detour to absorb a little bit of Texas history on our way to Lubbock.