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The Grohmann Story

Grohmann: \'grow man\ Through the horrors of war, the journey to Canada and a father's dream of establishing a knife factory known the world over.

About

Grohmann Knives Limited is a small family business with a big reputation.

It is an Old World story that began before the second World War, when a commercial buyer from Quebec traveled once a year to a factory in Sudetenland, then a German region of Czechoslovakia, to buy pocket knives. Every year the buyer would urge Rudolph Grohmann the production manager at a plant in Mikulasovice (Nixdorf), to come to Canada , promising him help to get started. Mr. Grohmann would always decline as he was happy in his own country, but after the war, the political situation grew desperate and in 1949 Rudolph Grohmann accepted the offer. Rudolph's daughter Berta married Michael Babinec Sr who was from Rudno nad Hrohom. Within a year, Grohmann and his family arrived in Nova Scotia at the invitation of the provincial government-funded Pictou Cutlery.

Here they worked along with approximately 30 other people. While Pictou Cutlery was in operation, an Arkansas knife company CASE was hired to assist with one large order of 200,000 pcs of folders. However, the Nova Scotia government closed the business after three years and sold off all the machinery. Mr Grohmann and Mr Babinec Sr then went to work at Trenton Steel making Canon shells for the Korean War and then to Fairy Aviation in Shearwater machining airplane parts amongst other jobs. Mr. Grohmann however was determined in his trade to make knives, and built a garage workshop to begin producing and engraving folding knives designed by himself.

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Mike Babinec Sr & Rudolph Grohmann making knives in the garage workshop

 oldRudolph Grohmann showing his many creations

babinec family small  The Babinec's: son Norman, father Mike Sr, son Mike Jr, son Roland,and mother Berta (Grohmann) Babinec

smallmikemichelleCurrently running Grohmann Knives: Michael Babinec Jr and daughter Michelle (Babinec) Jamieson 

 

Shortly after, Deane H. Russell, the private secretary to Prime Minister MacKenzie King, was tired of only finding imported knives at every store he went into. He thought there should also be Canadian knives on the market, so set out for a knife maker to help him make his dream come true. Mr. Grohmann met with Mr. Russell and together they set out to design truly Canadian made knives.

After field testing with the help of hunters & trappers across the far north, the D.H. Russell Belt Knife Original #1 was born. The Original, along with various other designs, won many awards and recognitions worldwide. Grohmann and Russell created three more models together, the #2 Trout and Bird, #3 Army, & #4 Survival.

"Grohmann Knives Limited" was formed in 1961 by the family and was run by one of Grohmann's daughters, Berta, & her husband Michael Babinec Sr. They passed the family business down to their three sons who all worked in the business together at one time. Shown here from left to right, son Norman (1956-2003), father Michael Babinec Sr (1926-2012), son Michael Jr, son Roland, and Michael Sr's wife/daughter of Rudolph, Berta Babinec (Grohmann). Michael's wife June Ann, and Roland's wife Chris, also worked for many years in the business along with some of their children & relatives.

Today, Michael Jr. President, along with his daughter Michelle are running the business in its same location in Pictou Nova Scotia with approximately  25 employees.

Arriving in Pictou on the waterfront 1949 Daughter Berta Babinec (Grohmann) with husband Michael Babinec Sr & Mike Jr in carriage, Rudolph Grohmann with wife Anna Grohmann, daughter Anna Sachs (Grohmann) with son Adolph Michael (Adolph Sachs Sr husband to Anna taking the picture)

 

Shown here is Michelle Jamieson and husband Scott with The Kilted Chef Alain Bosse who uses Grohmann Knives, shown outside of Grohmann Knives Factory Outlet under the giant Original Design knife cutting through the building.

 

Over the years, Grohmann Knives continues to grow its product line, and has added to the award-winning Canadian outdoor & kitchen knives to complement the collection. Six lines of kitchen knives are in production, as well as the award winning outdoor knives. Also many unique, custom made & machine knives are privately branded. Grohmann Knives are sold the world over in many countries.

 

 

At Grohmann Knives, making knives is as much an art as a trade. The top quality knives are produced with as many as 53 steps between starting point & finished product. Grohmann Knives offers Free Factory Tours of the plant in Nova Scotia. At Grohmann's, it's a matter of pride & family tradition!CONSTRUC

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"The Grohmann Journey to Freedom"

A brutal yet heart-warming personal True Story from one of the original founders of Grohmann Knives, Berta (Grohmann) Babinec.

She recounts her childhood, the horrors of war, their journey to Canada and her fathers dream of establishing a knife factory that is known the world over. A family that has been put through more than most could endure, but still made it through alive and together.

320 pages $14.95

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In Memoriam


Rudolph Grohmann Feb 11, 1895 - May 20, 1978 
Forever in our hearts


Michael Steven Babinec Sept 19, 1926- Nov 14, 2012
Will always be remembered with love



Norman Babinec 1956- 2003
Legacy of Life Nova Scotia Organ & Tissue Donation Program www.legacyoflife.ns.ca
   
   
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Grohmann Factory Outlet & Store

 


116 Water Street
PO Box 40, Pictou
Nova Scotia, Canada
B0K 1H0

Toll Free Phone 1-888-756-4837

(1-888-7-KNIVES)