Yes, Tomahawks Axes Still Exist and Here’s How They’re Used
The mere mention of a tomahawk axe typically elicits images of North America’s mighty native peoples wielding combat tomahawks or hurling the best throwing tomahawks in fierce competitions. While these cliche images are not too far off, tomahawks have come a long way.
European settlers were fascinated by the ingenuity and resourcefulness of Native Americans, especially their use of tomahawk axes. Similar in shape and design to a hatchet, Native Americans used tomahawks for a variety of purposes such as hunting, chopping, digging, cutting, skinning, and for various other bushcraft. While fighting tomahawks were used as weapons, tomahawks were more often regarded as a versatile, multipurpose tool, much like today.
Soon, European settler began using the tomahawk as well, so much so that it became standard gear in the United Kingdom’s Royal Navy. Today, they are still used by elite military and law enforcement agencies in the United States such as the Coast Guard, Navy Seals, Border Patrol, and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to name a few.
Members of these groups use tactical tomahawk axes to execute a variety of difficult tasks, including breaching, prying, and breaking through tough materials such as glass, metal, and wood. In fact, U.S. troops relied on tomahawks heavily during the Vietnam War in order to cut through dense jungle. Tactical tomahawks are often used in search and rescue operations during fires, earthquakes, and other disasters in which there are a number of obstacles.
In addition, outdoor enthusiasts also use tomahawks in addition to tactical knives to sharpen their wilderness and outdoor survival skills. In these scenarios, tomahawks are excellent for foraging, digging, cutting, and the overall set up of a camp.
However, modern tomahawks are now making their debut in the world of costume and fantasy play. Following the release of Playstation’s critically acclaimed action-adventure game Assassin’s Creed III, replicas of the main character’s tomahawk were in high demand. However, while menacing-looking, the tomahawks used by cos-players cannot be applied to tactical use.