Unique pizza cutter, handmade frame of pierced brass with Stainless Steel blade on ebony stand. Allegedly from the wreckage of the Air ship Italia. 1928
Lot 1001 Circa 1927-1928
This device is attributed to the estate of Roald Amundsen, famed Arctic Explorer who played a key role in the rescue of the surviving crew members of the ill-fated Airship Italia commanded by Umberto Nobile noted Italian aviator, and Arctic explorer.
In 1928, Nobile organized and conducted three polar exploration flights in the hydrogen Airship Italia which crashed on May 24, 1928 while returning from a successful landing at the North Pole.
This curious item was part of the galley equipment of the doomed airship and played a crucial part in the crew’s survival while awaiting rescue. Though its original purpose was to slice pizza baked for the crew, it was the only cutting instrument that survivors were able to recover from the post-crash wreckage.
After 48 days on the ice, an international rescue effort recovered the surviving crew along with Nobile’s fox terrier.
In appreciation for his part in the rescue operation Nobile presented the slicer to Roald Amundsen, mounted on a stand fashioned from a piece of the charred gondola frame salvaged from the wreckage of the ill-fated Airship Italia .