Born 125 Years Ago, the Swiss Army Knife Remains a Staple

How a multifunctional pocket blade from Switzerland became quintessentially American

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In September 1945, the U.S. armed forces commenced Operation Magic Carpet, the mass demobilization of American soldiers who’d fought in World War II. Some 20,000 troops a day boarded ships bound for home. In their rucksacks, many of the men carried souvenirs like battle flags, helmets and even grenades.

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This story first appeared in the Aug. 1, 2022, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.