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Forged in Fire

Artillery Shell Knives

Chuang Kung-ju /photos courtesy of Chuang Kung-ju /tr. by Phil Newell

Kinmen was bombarded with nearly a million artillery shells during the Second Taiwan Strait Crisis of 1958, leaving countless shell casings strewn across the island. For decades, blacksmith Wu Tseng-dong of the Chin Ho Li Steel Knife Factory has been using shell casing fragments to forge the keen-edged “Maestro Wu” knives that today grace many an expert chef’s kitchen.

The ringing hammer blows and blazing sparks are reminiscent of the intense artillery battles of years ago.




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