17 American Made Axes & Hatchets (2022 Source List)

The axe has been a staple of the American economy and development since its inception. Although the general idea and design have remained the same, the materials, geometry, and overall build quality have come a long way. Nowadays many axes are cheaply made overseas, but thankfully there are still some reputable companies making some excellent American made axes and hatchets.

American Made Axes and Hatchets Guide

In this guide, we’ll be covering different styles of axes and at different price points so you can find the perfect axe or hatchet for your use cases.

List of Axes and Hatchets Made in the USA

1. Snow and Nealley 3.5 Pound Single Bit Axe

Snow and Nealley 3.5 lbs

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Estimated Price $90
Type of Tool Felling axe
Weight 3.5 lb. (head)
Head Material Carbon steel
Handle Length 30 inches
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Smyrna, ME

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The Snow and Nealley 3.5 lb. Single-Bit Axe is one of the most popular American made axes on the market. I really like its traditional design and enjoy using it. It’s one of the larger axes we’ll be discussing today, with a handle length of 30 inches. Its size and weight make it perfect for felling trees and removing stumps.

The Snow and Nealley company was originally established in 1864 to meet the demands of Maine’s booming logging industry. However, at one point, the company outsourced production to China. Fortunately, the company was purchased by an Amish gentleman who had always admired Snow and Nealley products. He moved production back to the US in the early 2010s.

Since the Amish do not traditionally use the internet, Snow and Nealley have no official website. The Working Axes is the authorized source for the brand. The family is very involved with the brand, and I personally love that this legendary company is once again American owned.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

When Snow and Nealley outsourced some of their manufacturing to Asia, their customers, including myself, were disappointed. Many loyal customers pride themselves on purchasing American made axes, so finding that their favorite company no longer held that title was a letdown. It was an unfortunate situation for everyone.

However, re-establishing the company as all-American was a brilliant move. The new owner loved the company and wanted it to continue succeeding. Because of his principles, the company still thrives, even if its production catalog has slimmed down.

Just be careful if you find one of these axes used because for a short period of time they were made in China, but all new axes are in fact made in the USA. To ensure you are getting an American made axe, get it directly from the manufacturer.

Snow and Nealley’s large single-bit axe is made of 100 percent American materials, which I really like. Many axes nowadays claim to be made in the USA but they’re really “made in the USA with global materials” which is actually more like assembled in the USA. But that’s not the case here, every bit of it is made in the USA, including a genuine leather blade guard. These axes are known for having extremely tough, hard carbon steel heads that can withstand extended striking. I find it to be extremely high quality and durable.

Who We Recommend It For:

Snow and Nealley 3.5 Pound Single Bit Axe is perfect for those who need a large, comfortable axe to fell trees and chop wood. If you value extremely hard steel heads that are built to last, this is a great axe for you.

I personally like it, but I know some have mentioned that they do not like the lacquer finish of the Tennessee hickory handles and prefer to sand it off before using it. The only thing I don’t like about Snow and Nealley axes is that while they do arrive sharp, they aren’t razor-sharp like some axes. That said, this is preferable to those who want to give their axe a custom edge. You certainly can use it right out of the box, but you might want to consider sharpening it as well.

2. Snow and Nealley 2.25 Pound Single-Bit Axe

Snow&Nealley AXE

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Estimated Price $80
Type of Tool Utility axe
Weight 2.25 lb. (head)
Head Material Carbon steel
Handle Length 28 inches
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Smyrna, ME

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The 2.25 pound Single Bit Axe is smaller and lighter than the axe mentioned above. It still features 28-inch handle compared to the 30-inch handle on the 3.5 pound version. This makes it viable for 2 hand swinging and I consider this to be a general-purpose utility axe, meaning it has multiple uses, including yard work and handy work around the home.

The 2.25 pound Single-Bit Axe has a sharp side that is heavy enough to chop through felled tree limbs and debris, while the blunt side can make quick work of fence posts and perimeter stakes. The company itself considers this axe “small enough to be practical for all jobs, yet big enough to get the job done.”

As mentioned on the previous axe, Snow and Nealley filled a need that sprung from the logging industry. These smaller utility axes filled a need that came when the US middle class grew after the first World War when people needed axes to perform chores at home.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

This is a very handy axe to keep around for multiple uses. Though it is smaller than the above felling axe, you would have no trouble felling small trees with this axe. That said, it is not meant to cut down larger trees and while it certainly could it’s not ideal.

It’s considered the little brother (or sister) to the larger 3.5-pound single-bit axe. Unlike its heavier older sibling, it is more suited for sharpening and hammering rather than felling large trees. However, it can still be used for smaller trees. It might actually be more useful to have if you do more yard work and chores rather than tree cutting.

As with all Snow and Nealley axes, the 2.25 lb. Single-Bit Axe includes its own hand-sewn leather blade guard.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this product for those looking for a lightweight axe that still has lots of length. Heavier axes like the 3.5 lb. The Single-Bit axe above may be too cumbersome to handle day-to-day jobs in the garden and yard, but this 2.25 lb. single-bit axe is perfect for those kinds of tasks.

Snow and Nealley warn that their axes will differ slightly from the pictures you see online. Each axe is hand-assembled and finished by craftsmen, and each leather sheath is hand sewn. The textures, grains, and finishes will vary slightly between each axe. I personally find them to be absolutely beautiful, but just keep in mind that because they are hand-finished no two axes look exactly the same.

As with the larger axe, this axes doesn’t arrive razor sharp and some people may find this frustrating. However, this seems like a misunderstanding on customers’ parts rather than a negative toward the company. It seems that Snow and Nealley purposely send dull axes to allow customers to sharpen their axes to their own desired specifications. Plus, it is safer during transit.

3. Estwing Sportsman’s Axe

Estwing Sportsman's Axe

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Estimated Price $40
Type of Tool Light wood splitting hatchet
Weight 1.91 lb. (overall)
Head Material Solid steel
Handle Length 14 inches
Handle Material Solid steel
Location Produced Rockford, IL

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The Estwing Sportsman’s Axe is a beautifully designed small, full-tang axe, or hatchet. Unlike other Estwing axes, this holds its weight at the head, so it is primed for chopping through branches and logs. It has a perfectly squared blunt side that is great for hammering in stakes and nails when needed, as well.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

The Sportsman’s Axe is made by one of our favorite companies, Estwing. My favorite thing about this axe, aside from it being fully American made, is its single-piece construction. Being that it’s forged from a single piece of steel, it is extremely strong and this is an axe that you can truly count on. It is perfectly balanced, and the added weight at the head makes chopping a little easier. The only thing I don’t like about it is that the sticker can be a little difficult to remove, but with a little adhesive remover that’s really a small thing to complain about considering what you’re getting here.

As far as the hatchet goes, it seems nearly perfect. It is prettier than it needs to be with a genuine leather grip and functions extraordinarily well. The handle lacquer is too smooth for some to hold comfortably with bare hands, but that can be easily sanded away.

Who We Recommend It For:

This is great for someone who is looking for a lightweight tool that still gets the job done. It is comfortable to hold and easy to use while still looking nice. It ticks all the boxes one could want when it comes to a hatchet. I keep one of these in my truck anytime I go camping because it comes in handy for so many applications. I love Estwing and along with their axes, I also own many of their hammers. What separates Estwing from many of its competitors is that they’re an incredible value. For axes of similar quality, you typically have to pay a lot more.

4. Estwing Camper’s Axe

Estwing Camper's Axe

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Estimated Price $90
Type of Tool Light wood splitting and camping axe
Weight 0.6 lb. (head)
Head Material Solid steel
Handle Length 26 inches
Handle Material Solid steel
Location Produced Rockford, IL

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

Estwing’s axes are a bit different in that they are forged in one piece of solid steel rather than constructed with a steel head on a wooden handle. The 26-inch camper’s axe is actually the “extra-long” designation, as the original camper’s axe is 16 inches in length. Estwing is not known for its felling axes but for its shorter camper’s axes.

On top of the steel handle is Estwing’s proprietary shock reduction nylon grip. Estwing introduced this shock reduction technology in 2001. The patented technology reduces up to 70 percent of reverberation, giving users a more comfortable experience when hammering or chopping with their axes.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

Estwing axes come with benefits and drawbacks, depending on what your main goal is. Because these axes are so extremely light, they have far less power behind each swing than felling axes. However, they are not meant to be felling axes. Their lightweight nature could be a benefit for those who want to use them as they are intended: for light wood splitting and camping chores.

The shock absorption and lightweight ultimately increase the time a person would be able to cut firewood, for instance, without becoming worn out. And Estwing is the only company that makes American axes with any kind of specialized shock reduction technology.

Who We Recommend It For:

This axe is great for people who want to use an axe but might find conventional axes too painful to use. if you’re someone who experiences wrist pain that can make splitting wood too uncomfortable due to reverberation and weight, this is a good option. The Estwing offers a solution and with its comfortable handle that’s longer than a typical handle, it’s also easier to generate more force while cutting.

Additionally, the Estwing Camping Axe offers users peace of mind since it is all one forged piece of steel. There is no concern that the head will become loose and disconnect from the handle at any time. Although a little more expensive than some of the axes on this list, I do feel that it’s fairly priced and it’s one of my favorite axes made in the USA.

And based on the name of the axe being the “Camper’s Axe” you can probably already guess that this axe is perfect for camping applications.

Here is a good video demonstrating the capabilities of the 16″ version of this axe.

5. Estwing Hunter’s Axe

Estwing Hunter's Axe GutHook

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Estimated Price $70
Type of Tool Light wood splitting/gutting axe
Weight 1.68 lb. (overall)
Head Material Solid steel
Handle Length 14.25 inches
Handle Material Solid steel
Location Produced Rockford, IL

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

Estwing is to the point with its naming conventions. The Estwing Hunter’s Axe is for hunters. At 14.25 inches in length, this axe might be considered a hatchet by some. Its primary use is to clear away brush and debris from hunting sites and deer stands.

The axe includes a hook on the opposite side of the blade that can be used to gut hunted game. This is an added convenience for hunters. As with all Estwing’s nylon-gripped tools, the hunter’s axe also features shock reduction.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

This is an interesting axe and unlike anything else on this list. At first glance, “Hunter’s Axe” might give the impression that this axe is meant to kill wild game. At such a small, light size, this tool probably would not cut it. However, the gutting hook is a neat feature that hunters could easily take advantage of.

This axe has no hammering capabilities for tent stakes, but it is useful for clearing away overgrown brush and branches, and splitting kindling for firewood. Its nylon sheath includes a small compartment with a sharpening stone so users can sharpen their axe while field dressing their large game.

Who We Recommend It For: 

The hunter’s axe is great for hunters in need of a small, lightweight tool to carry with them onto their campsites. Seasoned hunters might already have a preferred method of gutting their kills, but it offers a unique convenience that new hunters might find interesting.

6. Estwing Tomahawk Axe

Estwing Tomahawk Axe

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Estimated Price $50
Type of Tool Bushwhacking/self-defense tomahawk
Weight 1.5 lb. (overall)
Head Material Solid steel
Handle Length 16.25 in.
Handle Material Solid steel
Location Produced Rockford, IL

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information: 

The Estwing Tomahawk Axe is the first tomahawk on our list. It looks quite different from the other axes from Estwing and performs different functions. However, like the other nylon-gripped axes from Estwing, this tomahawk also features shock reduction technology for comfortable impact.

This tomahawk is not meant to chop down trees or stock up on firewood. It is best suited for demolition and self-defense. With a blade side and a sharper, puncturing side, this tomahawk will allow users to clear pathways and break glass when necessary.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe: 

This is a great-looking tactical tomahawk. It is slick and durable while remaining lightweight and easy to yield. According to reviewers, this tomahawk should be seen as a tool for breaching and self-defense, not as a simple hatchet. For example, if you are trapped in a car, you can use the head to break the glass. Additionally, the tomahawk is dangerous enough to be used as a weapon.

For $50, this is a great tool to have on hand. The proprietary shock reduction adds a level of usability that other tomahawks cannot offer. And this has many uses. As mentioned above, as a self-defense and breaching weapon, this tomahawk can be extremely useful. However, it can also help you clear a path and breakthrough debris in the same way a hatchet would.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend Estwing’s tomahawk for those looking to build their survival kits with an all-around useful tool that is not too expensive. If you are in the market for a simple hatchet, there are other more conventional options available. This has a tactical feel that encompasses more than what a regular hatchet does.

7. Estwing Double-Bit Axe

Estwing Double Bit Axe

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Estimated Price $50
Type of Tool Wood chopping axe
Weight 2.37 lb. (overall)
Head Material Solid steel
Handle Length 17 in.
Handle Material Solid Steel
Location Produced Rockford, IL

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

Estwing’s Double-Bit Axe looks like it belongs in a fantasy video game. Or chopping trees. The difference between a single-bit axe and a double-bit axe is that a double-bit axe has a blade on each side. The benefit of a double-bit axe is that a side will remain sharp while one side chops away.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

The double-bit axe looks unconventional, but it operates the same as any other axe. You can fell a tree with this axe and switch sides without having to sharpen your blade as often. The Estwing axe has nice construction and balance. It also features the same shock reduction nylon grip that Estwing includes on most of its axes.

Fortunately, this axe comes with a nylon sheath that covers both sides. You could also use this as a throwing axe, but after talking to the Estwing company they actually informed be that they do not recommend their axes for throwing, although if you check out videos online, you’ll see many people doing just that.

Who We Recommend It For:

This is perfect for those who prefer to use double-bit over the conventional single-bit axes. If you do not enjoy sharpening your blades, this type of axe allows you to go for longer periods between sharpenings.

It can be used for felling trees, chopping firewood, bushwhacking, self-defense in the woods, etc. It is an all-around very useful and powerful axe.

8. Snow and Nealley Penobscot Bay Kindling Axe

Snow&Nealley Penobscot Bay Kindling Axe

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The Working Axes

Estimated Price $60
Type of Tool Light wood-splitting and camping axe
Weight 1.75 lb. (head)
Head Material Carbon steel
Handle Length 18 in.
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Smyrna, ME

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The Snow and Nealley Penobscot Bay Kindling Axe is much smaller than the first two Snow and Nealley axes on this list. This compact axe is meant for one-handed use. It is larger than a hatchet but smaller than a two-handed felling axe.

This is called a kindling axe because it easily splits wood for kindling. It is not meant for felling large trees or chopping huge stumps. However, for creating kindling for the colder seasons, its 1.75 pound head and 18-inch handle get the job done perfectly.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

The compact nature of this hand axe makes it perfect for camping and outdoor adventures. This axe can get you plenty of firewood for your campfire with ease. It is small and lightweight, so it will not weigh down a backpacker’s tightly packed kit. While this axe is called the Penobscot Bay axe, it features the popular Hudson Bay axe head.

In general, axes are used for chopping wood, while mauls are used for splitting wood. This 1.75 pound kindling axe offers users the best of both worlds. Those who find splitting a full season’s worth of kindling with a maul tiring will find that this hand axe makes quick work of kindling without the heavy head weight.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this hand axe for those who often go camping or backing and want to make their own firewood supplies. Additionally, if you prefer to split wood using a one-handed axe rather than chopping wood with a two-handed axe, this would be better suited for you.

Interestingly, those who enjoy axe throwing love this specific model as its size, shape, and weight are ideal for the sport.

9. Snow and Nealley Mini Maul

Snow Nealley Mini Maul

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Estimated Price $70
Type of Tool Kindling splitting maul
Weight 3 lb. (head)
Head Material Carbon steel
Handle Length 18 in.
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Smyrna, ME

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The last Snow and Nealley item on our list is the mini maul. While a maul is not exactly an axe, it appears on our list because of its usefulness as a wood splitter. Those of you looking for an American made tool for wood-splitting might prefer mauls to axes for a particular job.

Similar to the small hand axe listed above, the mini maul splits wood. The difference is that the maul head is much heavier. Mauls are designed with heavy heads to forcibly split wood apart rather than cut wood with sharp blades.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

This is a great one-handed maul, though it should not be confused with an axe. The mini maul’s job is solely to split hardwood kindling, not to fell trees, or to complete other tasks that would require a sharp axe’s edge. The handle on this mini maul is the same 18-inch handle used on the above Penobscot axe.

This mini maul is a different design than the one Snow, and Nealley used to offer. I actually really enjoy the new model, as the maul head is shorter and thicker, providing more bulk and strength. This maul is durable and is meant to last the test of time.

As with the Snow and Nealley axes on this list, the mini maul comes with a handsewn leather guard. You can learn more about the mini maul on the official Snow and Nealley website here.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this maul for someone who needs a durable, reliable wood splitter. The choice between a wood-splitting axe or a maul really comes down to personal preference.

Mauls are heavier and split wood with brute force. Mauls are typically more useful for thicker pieces of wood that require more power. Splitting axes, on the other hand, are lighter and easier to swing. One might get worn out swinging a maul much more quickly than swinging an axe.

The best option is to have an axe at home as well as a maul. Since the two tools ultimately serve different functions, it is a good idea to invest in the right axe as well as a great wood-splitting maul. If you’re looking for a great axe made in the USA this is a great option.

10. Council Tool Velvicut Premium American Felling Axe

Council Tool Velvicut Felling Axe

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Estimated Price $200
Type of Tool Felling axe
Weight 4 lb. (head)
Head Material Alloy steel
Handle Length 36 in.
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Lake Waccamaw, NC

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The Council Tool Velvicut Premium American Felling Axe is a full-sized felling axe with an extra-long 36-inch handle and a Dayton head. Velvicut is Council’s premium line, and this axe features a head forged from 5160-grade alloy steel. The handle is made of American hickory wood chosen based on superior density and grain orientation.

Both the axe head and handle are coated in oil for protection from rust and damage. Council Tool guarantees that this axe head will last for a lifetime without the need for replacement. Additionally, Council Tool includes a leather sheath with this axe.

Council Tool is a major player in the American made axe industry. The company is known by its loyal following as stalwart and reliable. John Pickett Council founded the company back in 1886, and the Council family still owns the company today. It is currently operated by fourth and fifth-generation Councils.

The original founder built the company on these four beliefs, which the company still abides by today: “Manufacture quality products, offer value by being innovative and progressive, be straightforward and honest, and be a good corporate citizen.”

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

The Velvicut Premium American Felling Axe is indeed premium and has a price tag to prove it. At $200 or more, this axe is quite expensive compared to others in the same category. However, users have confirmed that the Velvicut handle offers comfort beyond that which other axes can compare.

Once the axe head is forged, it is heat-treated and tempered for maximum strength and durability. This axe is designed to fell tree after tree without failing. Additionally, small dings and chips can be grinded out of the edge without causing lasting damage, something that cannot be said for all axes.

Council Tool takes care to choose high-quality materials in all of its axes and tools. The Velvicut line, though, is created with premium hickory and steel that give these tools an air of prestige.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this axe for people who plan to do a lot of tree cutting. Because the handle is so long at 36 inches, smaller, more precise jobs can become difficult. However, this is a felling axe, and the long handle makes powerful swings easier for felling. It also looks nice, if that is important to you.

A feature that might put this axe ahead of others is that the handle is unfinished. For most axe users, this is an advantage because they either prefer to add their own finish or they prefer the feel of unfinished handles. The Velvicut Premium American Felling Axe allows users to skip the drawn-out process of sanding off an unwanted finish.

Because this axe is quite pricey, we recommend it for someone who is not opposed to spending a pretty penny on a reliable axe to suit their needs. However, if you are in the market for a utility axe or a more multifunctional axe, this is likely not the axe for you.

Additionally, the 36-inch handle could be unwieldy for some. For shorter users, a shorter axe handle might be more useful.

11. Council Tool Jersey Classic Axe

Council Tool Jersey Classic Axe

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Estimated Price $80
Type of Tool Felling axe
Weight 3.5 lb. (head)
Head Material Tool steel
Handle Length 32 in.
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Lake Waccamaw, NC

Product Origin and Manufacturer Review

The Council Tool Jersey Classic Axe is another popular item in the Council Tool catalog. The Jersey pattern, sometimes called “Baltimore Jersey,” is known for its stability. Unlike other axe heads, the Jersey head has a unique construction that increases surface contact between the head and handle.

With a 32-inch handle, the Jersey Classic Axe is a full-sized, two-handed felling axe. The curved handle adds traction for powerful swings. Additionally, Council Tool takes great care to minimize shrinkage, so the head does not come loose from the handle.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

While this axe is not part of Council Tool’s premium Velvicut line, it certainly deserves a place on this list. The 32-inch handles makes this felling axe more accessible for a wider range of users.

This axe does not look perfect right out of the box. Users report slight grain issues and grinding imperfections, but none of these actually impact the axe’s performance. In fact, this Council Tool Jersey Classic outperforms other axes in its category, provided that you know how to tune up an axe once you take it out of the box.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this axe to anyone who does not mind handling a bit of finishing at home once they receive their axe. Council Tool axes arrive unfinished, which allows for personalized oiling. For most, this is a pro rather than a con. Some, however, do give demerits because this specific axe needs sharpening before use.

In our opinion, the small bit of extra work is worth it for this axe. At $80, this is a great full-sized felling axe that is built to last. It is more affordable than other axes of the same size and quality, and it is American made.

12. Council Tool Hudson Bay Camp Axe

Council Tool 2

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Estimated Price $70
Type of Tool Light wood splitting and camping axe
Weight 2 lb. (head)
Head Material Tool steel
Handle Length 28 in.
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Lake Waccamaw, NC

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The Council Tool Hudson Bay Camp Axe is one of the most popular axes on the market. Along with being another great American made axe, it features the ever-popular Hudson Bay axe pattern, which has been a favorite among axe wielders since the Hudson’s Bay Company dominated the fur trade centuries ago.

The Hudson Bay axe is not meant for felling trees but as a camp axe. This means it is better suited for splitting kindling, hammering tent stakes and hammock stakes, etc.

Council Tool axes are not known as being flawless out of the box, but Council Tool is responsive to customer needs and inquiries, providing excellent customer service. As one of the few companies that still produce American made axes, many appreciate Council Tool for its authenticity.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

This is a great, well-rounded camp axe that will suit the needs of most anyone. The axe will likely need to be tuned up right out of the box, but Council Tool axes are thin, meaning that it should not take long to file its edge to razor sharpness.

As far as actual quality control, Council Tool handles it all in-house. You can be sure that the company takes pride in its products and works hard to ensure all axes that leave the facility are high-quality. Council Tool is known for its durable, hard steel, so even if the axe itself is not beautiful, the performance will be.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this axe for someone who needs a reliable camp axe and does not worry about aesthetics. Because the head might have grinding imperfections and the handle grain might not be perfect, someone expecting a pristine axe could be disappointed with this axe. However, those prioritizing function cannot go wrong with this axe.

Additionally, if you do not mind spending 30 minutes or less sanding and edge to increase sharpness, this is a great camp axe to have on hand. One downside is this axe does not come with a sheath, so you would have to buy one separately.

13. Council Tool Pulaski Axe

Council Tool Pulaski Axe

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Estimated Price $85
Type of Tool Forestry and landscaping axe
Weight 3.75 lb. (head)
Head Material Steel
Handle Length 36 in.
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Lake Waccamaw, NC

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

Pulaski axes are unique in that they feature an axe blade on one side of the head and a mattock blade on the other. The Council Tool Pulaski Axe is known as a superior tool in forestry and firefighting. It has a long straight handle that makes it easy to swing powerfully, clearing brush and chopping wood.

As a firefighting tool, it is much lighter than other axes. During a forest fire, fire crews can carry this axe around with ease. The Pulaski axe is the standard tool that the US Forest Service uses to fight fires, and it is well suited to do so.

The Pulaski axe pattern is said to have been developed by US Forest Service Ranger Edward Pulaski, who is credited with saving many lives during a large fire in 1910. Pulaski and his crew became trapped when fire activity ramped up around them, but Pulaski remained calm and found shelter for all 45 men in a mine tunnel.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

The mattock blade is shaped like a garden hoe, giving this axe two unique uses. While The mattock side rids this axe of its hammering capability, it increases its usefulness by a lot. This Pulaski Axe is great for landscaping, as the chopping side can be used to cut trees and clear branches, while the hoe side can grub in dirt and remove bushes at their roots.

As with all Council Tool axes, the Pulaski Axe is well crafted with high-quality forged steel and American hickory.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this Council Tool Pulaski Axe to those in forestry crews, firefighting crews, and those who want a dual-sided, multi-use tool.

The powerful axe head can fell a tree with its strong, sharp edge. Then, the hoe side can uproot a stump, meaning you can completely remove a tree all with this one powerful tool. For $85, the price is right.

14. Council Tool Velvicut Premium Hudson Bay Belt Hatchet

Council Tool Axe

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Estimated Price $130
Type of Tool Kindling splitting/camp/carving hatchet
Weight 1.25 lb. (head)
Head Material Knife steel
Handle Length 14 in.
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Lake Waccamaw, NC

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The Council Tool Velvicut Premium Hudson Bay Belt Hatchet combines multiple Council Tool features we have already mentioned on this list. The Velvicut premium line includes the grade A hickory wood handle and 5160 knife steel head. Additionally, this hatchet has the popular Hudson Bay head style.

Because this hatchet is a cut above other Council Tool hatchets, it includes a full leather sheath with a snap-on mask for added blade and user protection.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

The Council Tool Velvicut Premium Hudson Bay Belt Hatchet has a short 14-inch handle, which makes it easy to wield in small spaces. It is a popular hatchet for backpacking and camping, as it is light and does not take up much room.

The included sheath gives this hatchet an edge over others in its category. The sheath features a belt slit as well as a D-ring, so users can easily fasten this hatchet to their belt or backpack for convenient, hands-free transport. This hatchet is also suitable for some carving applications.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this hatchet for someone who wants a high-quality utility hatchet and does not mind spending a lot of money. At $130, this hatchet is not cheap.

Because it is part of Council Tool’s Velvicut line, it comes with a steep price tag far above other hatchets from the company. In my opinion this is easily one of the best American made hatchets out there right now.

15. Man Made Co. National Felling Axe

Man Made Co Axe

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Estimated Price $245
Type of Tool Felling axe
Weight 3.75 lb. (head)
Head Material Hardened steel
Handle Length 30 in.
Handle Material Hickory wood
Location Produced Chicago, IL

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

The Man Made Co National Felling Axe looks like a beautiful piece of art at first glance, and it is. But it is also a fully-functioning felling axe just like any other on this list. The difference is that the Man Made Co National Felling Axe features a painted hickory wood handle that gives it a different, more decorative look.

With a 30-inch handle, this is a full-sized, full-bodied two-handed felling axe meant for chopping trees and logs with ease. It features a 3.5 pound axe head forged from hardened steel with a five-inch cutting edge. There is no question that this axe was created for the primary purpose of cutting and felling. It just so happens to look extra good while doing it.

Man Made Co also offers customized wood-burned engravings on axe orders for those interested. Each axe includes handmade leather sheaths made from cowhide. The company itself was created out of the founders’ love and admiration for their father and grandfather. The hardworking humility they saw growing up gave them the foundation for the company’s values.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

The Man Made Co National Felling Axe is beautiful. Of that, there is no question. The additional paint and finishes on this axe do not detract from its functionality. In fact, it gives this axe something extra. The company’s website mentions that, after you finish a hard day’s work with this axe, you can “lay it on the fireplace mantle and be proud to showcase” it.

The company’s marketing is hyper-masculine, which can be off putting for some. There is nothing wrong with masculine marketing, especially in the axe and hatchet sphere. However, the intensity of Man Made Co’s in-your-face obsession with manliness might be over the top for some. Still, the product itself is high-quality.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this axe to someone who wants their axe to be more than a functional tool. The Man Made Co tells a story beyond just that of a hardworking individual but someone who prefers to show off their American made axe as a piece of art.

Because of the extra care and finishing that goes into this axe, it comes with a hefty price tag of $245, and that does not include any extra engraving or customization. Because of that, we recommend this axe to enthusiasts who do not mind spending quite a bit of money on an axe that they deem extra special.

16. CRKT Jenny Wren Compact Tomahawk

CRKT Jenny Wren Axe

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Shop CRKT Website

Estimated Price $135
Type of Tool Bushwhacking/cutting/tactical tomahawk
Weight 1.12 lb. (overall)
Head Material Carbon steel
Handle Length 11.5 in.
Handle Material Carbon steel
Location Produced Tualatin, OR

Product Origin and Manufacturer Information:

CRKT stands for Columbia River Knife and Tool. The company was founded in 1994 and actually used to make more axes but has since discontinued most of them. Fortunately, a few tomahawks still survive in the company’s catalog. Many of CRKT’s knives are made in Taiwan, but from what we can tell, their tomahawks are made in the USA.

CRKT is a unique company in that it collaborates with designers all over the world to create great, innovative tools. Each item, including the Jenny Wren Compact Tomahawk, includes the designer’s name, location, and bio, giving proper credit where credit is due. It is clear that CRKT takes its commitment to integrity seriously.

The Jenny Wren Compact Tomahawk was designed by Ryan Johnson of RMJ Tactical in Chattanooga, TN. He named and designed the tool after the Carolina wrens he frequently sees outside the windows of his workshop. The Jenny Wren was designed for maximum cutting power.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

This little thing can cut. The Jenny Wren has three cutting edges for maximum cutting utility. The handle is made with glass-reinforced nylon and offers users a strong grip for added safety, even in wet conditions. For bushwhacking and camping, this tomahawk will help guide the way by cutting away branches and debris.

At just over one pound, the Jenny Wren is light, like its namesake. The tomahawk also comes with a sheath that can be strapped to a belt or backpack for added convenience.

In addition to cutting wood and debris, this tomahawk can be used as a personal survival tool. When necessary, it can help you gain entry or exit from a space or fight off an attacker. It is a great tool to have on hand when you are expecting the unexpected.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this tomahawk for those who backpack often and need a very lightweight, compact, personal means of cutting. Backpackers need to carry light items to make up for their lack of carrying capacity, and the Jenny Wren fits that bill.

At $135, the Jenny Wren Compact Tomahawk is expensive, especially when you compare it to full-sized axes that are much larger. The high price tag is an important consideration when choosing a small survival and utility tool like this one. However, the brilliant design and craftsmanship do warrant attention.

This tomahawk will not be the best choice if your main goal is to chop wood or fight. While this tomahawk can certainly come in handy in an emergency, it is too small to be extremely dangerous or forceful. Still, it does not hurt to have something like this in your car or backpack, just in case.

17. Leatherhead Tools Pick Head Axe

Leather Head Tools Axe

Leatherhandedtools.com

Estimated Price $70
Type of Tool Firefighters axe (prying and cutting)
Weight 6 lb. (head)
Head Material Carbon steel
Handle Length 36 in.
Handle Material Fiberglass or hickory wood
Location Produced Rockford, IL

Product Origin and Manufacturer Origin:

The Leatherhead Tools Pick Head Axe was designed with the primary purpose of demolition. It is unique among other axes on this list that are for woodcutting and tree felling. Leatherhead Tools created this axe with firefighters, emergency response, rescue personnel, law enforcement, and the military in mind.

This axe comes with extra-heavy head options, at six or eight pounds. The heads are so heavy because they are used to literally demolish whatever is in their path, gaining the user entry or exit in dangerous situations. It can also be used to create impromptu ventilation if smoke is filling an area.

The company name “Leatherhead” comes from the leather helmet that firefighters wear. The firefighter’s original helmet was invented all the way back in 1740 by Jacobus Turck in New York and was modernized into the style we are familiar with today by Henry T. Gratacap in 1821. Leatherhead Tools pays homage to these roots.

What We Like and Don’t Like About This Axe:

The Leatherhead Tools Pick Head Axe is a brute force tool useful for those who work in one of the industries mentioned above. It might not be as well suited to someone who just needs to chop wood at home due to its heavy weight.

This axe is available in multiple materials and colors. These include fiberglass styles that come in hi-viz orange, hi-viz lime, yellow, and black. There is also a more traditional hickory wood version with a red axe head.

It is difficult to review this axe against woodcutting axes because it is not necessarily meant for the same function. However, it is a genuine American made axe that is extremely useful for its primary goal of demolition in the name of rescue.

Who We Recommend It For:

We recommend this axe for firefighters, rescue personnel, and other individuals who need this type of heavy axe to breach buildings. During the event of a fire, wooden structures frequently collapse quickly, trapping individuals inside and preventing entry. This heavy-duty axe is perfect for breaking down barriers that get in the way of rescue.

At $70, this is a very affordable axe. It is extra-long and heavy, so you are getting your money’s worth of materials when you purchase this axe. The different styles also offer buyers a level of choice that many axes do not. The hi-viz options increase visibility in low-light situations, which is essential in smoky rooms.

Factors We Considered:

When creating this list of the highest quality American made axes and hatchets, we took different aspects of axes into consideration. Not every axe is created equally, and the degree to which they are made in America also varies.

Most of the axes on this list we have personally owned or used, or a least a comparable model offered by the company. This means that we thoroughly researched and tested axes to decide which models were manufactured with high-quality materials and craftsmanship. We looked into why certain axes are so popular with those who use axes regularly. We needed to know what made an axe great.

Additionally, we broadened our search beyond just wood-cutting axes. While American made woodcutting axes and hatchets are the primary reason for our list, other types of axes came across our path and we felt the need to include them. Firefighting axes, hunting axes, and self-defense hatchets are just as useful.

Wrapping Things Up:

Interestingly, there were not as many American made axes and hatchet manufacturers as you might think. There is something about logging and felling trees that seems so American. However, the tried-and-true companies that continue to manufacture axes in the US with American materials deserve the spotlight. If you are in the market for an axe or hatchet, consider shopping from one of the American companies on this list.

Also, let us know if there are any great axes that we missed in the comments below!

2 thoughts on “17 American Made Axes & Hatchets (2022 Source List)”

  1. I go hiking about 3 times per year and right now I have an Estwing that’s pretty good in terms of utility to use around the campsite. I’m looking for something a little heavier now to cut wood and such so I think I’ll try one of the Snow and Nealley axes.

    Reply
    • Hey Clay, I also have an Estwing axe and many of their products for that matter. They’re really hard to beat. A larger axe really is nice to have around the campsite as well.

      Reply

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