The first American knife-bladed bayonet is considered to be the Model 1861 for the Plymouth / Whitneyville rifle. It is perhaps better known by its nickname, the Dahlgren Bowie Bayonet, named for it's inventor Admiral John A. Dahlgren. As we know, the basic use of a bayonet is mounted to the end of a rifle or musket. However Dahlgren recognized that the bayonet could serve in the hand as well. It is interesting to note that the 1861 rifle already had a sword bayonet designed for it at the time of Dahlgren's invention. In Dahlgren's own words he called the current sword bayonet the "most useless thing in the world except at the end of a musket." Perhaps this explains why most Dahlgren bayonets do NOT fit the Model 1861 rifle. They were meant to, but they were also designed to be used as a close quarters fighting weapon as well as a working tool aboard ship in a sailor or marines hand. The Admiral invented this bayonet because a knife would not be sanctioned by the Ordnance Board. Our example is in near mint condition and not only includes its sheath, it also has its extremely rare and original frog (belt attachment). No knife is truly complete without one.