This Marine 7in-blade fighting knife was a virtual symbol of the Corps. The Union Cutlery Company offered its heavy-duty Model 1217 fighting knife to the Marines in 1942, based on a proven design. The Marines adopted it and other companies manufactured it as well, but it became known as the KA-Bar. According to the company’s own history (the company changed its name to KA-BAR Cutlery Inc. in 1952), the name was derived from the pre-WWII testimonial of a satisfied trapper who crudely wrote that his rifle had jammed and he had used their knife to kill a wounded bear attacking him. In thanking the company for their quality product, the trapper described using his knife to “kill a bear.” The way his writing was scrawled across the paper it looked like “ka bar.” The company adopted it as their trademark, KABAR. It did not mean “knife, assistant Browning automatic rifleman” as is rumoured, they carried bayonets.