Which came first?
The F & H Forge Tomahawk or my obsession with the History Channel show Vikings?
The answer is not straight forward.
Last Summer I saw a FaceBook drawing from F & H Forge of Stuart, Virginia, for the winner’s choice of a hand forged railroad spike knife or hand forged Tomahawk. The knife was cool. Very cool, in fact, but something about the tomahawk seemed to speak to me and my Cherokee ancestry. As I typed my entry indicating that I would choose the tomahawk it felt like a done deal… like I wasn’t entering a drawing, but rather, claiming my prize. Fate would see to it that this stunning Tomahawk would make it’s way to me.
Then the drawing ended and I felt shame.
My gut had lied to me.
The tomahawk had not arrived at my door.
A few months later I stumbled on Vikings and started binge watching my way through the bloody ascent of Earl Ragnar. One of the main characters, Floki, carries two tomahawks and is obscenely effective with them. More than once while watching Vikings I lamented not winning the drawing for the F & H Forge Tomahawk.
As Summer transitioned into Fall I noticed a hidden private message inbox in my FB account and found an old, unread message from one of the head honchos at F & H Forge, Jared F. (I assume he is the F in F&H) that I had won the drawing!
Winner Winner, Chicken Dinner!
I was both thrilled and dejected, as it had been OVER 3 MONTHS since the note was sent. I figured I had missed the note and my chance at the Tomahawk had evaporated. I knew it was a long shot, but I replied with regrets that I had JUST found the note.
Turns out F & H Forge had not given the Tomahawk to someone else. They put it back in inventory and sold it. Much to my surprise, they offered to make a new one and send it to me. Further, since they were making it from scratch anyway they offered my choice of a Spike Hawk or a Hammer Poll.
Seriously? How cool is that!?
I was back to being thrilled again! I deferred the choice of what type to them… they are the experts, after all. It took a few months for F & H Forge to work my freebie into the production schedule, but when they did, they did it right. Pictured below is the Hammer Poll Tomahawk that F & H Forge made for me.
I honestly had no idea the depth of history around this particular type of tomahawk in North America or that there was a class of tomahawks referred to as OTNA – for those used by Other Than Native Americans.
Here is the note I received from Jared at F & H Forge:
“I chose a hammer pole for you. It was made from an old ball pein hammer and I left some minor hammer marks in it and did an acid finish to give it an original look. The handle is straight grain white oak. Also put a leather wrap grip on handle. The leather allows for an awesome grip but can be removed very easily. “
As can be seen in the pictures, it turned out fantastic. The F & H Forge Hand Forged Tomahawk HammerHawk Hammer Poll is a great mix of practical, artistic and historical.
*More details below the pictures*
F & H Forge hammer poll tomahawk Specs:
- Handle length: 18 inches
- Handle diameter: 0.8 inches x 1.1 inches
- Head length: 6 inches
- Head width: 1.4 inches
- Weight: 24.8 ounches
F & H Forge hammer poll tomahawk Features:
- Axe edge is SHARP and will no doubt cut wood
- Hammer face is very utilitarian
- Leather wrap on handle is aesthetically pleasing and functional, providing significantly better grip than the bare wooden handle
- Acid finish treatment really gives the hammer poll tomahawk an aged look, which combines nicely with the clean, straight oak handle
- The simple “F & H” stamped Makers Mark on the blade is a nice touch
- As a hand forged item, every little detail of the metalworking process is evident and highlighted by the acid finish
Cost and options
Here is what F & H Forge told me about options if you would like them to make something for you:
“We currently don’t have a web site. Hoping to have one up soon. The tomahawks and knives can range from $60.00 and up. Average hawk or knife runs around $125 to $150. Alot depends on the style and materials.”
Contact them via their Facebook page. Here is the link: F & H Forge Facebook page
Pictures of other work by F & H Forge: