FJS with Borchardt, circa1966

Frederick with Borchardt pistol in 1966

Frederick John Stephens

is a English author of several military books. His books are used as reference books by Third Reich collectors all over the world.


Family background

On the maternal side, the family is of Irish and Scottish ancestry; and on the paternal side the background is that of English and Flemish origin. The name "Stephens" is not an English name, but it is most common in Belgium, Holland, and Flanders. It is most probable that the "Stephens" side came to England during the time of the campaign against the Hugenots (circa 1580). Many people from the low  countries escaped persecution by fleeing to England in this period, and the majority settled in Lancashire where they established the Lancashire cotton industry. "Stephens" and its various derivatives - such as "Stevens", is a common name in Lancashire. There is recorded a manufacturer of bayonets by the name of Stevens, in Maastricht (now in Holland). In WWII the Stephens family was engaged in essential war work, and this continued into the post-war years - mostly in the construction of furnaces, and other industrial complexes essential to the development of post-war Britain. Much of this work was undertaken in the re-development of the Clydebank area of Glasgow - a location which had been seriously affected by intensive German bombing; and for which re-building was a priority.



Frederick J Stephens

Signing books at MAX show, USA 2007

Education and work

By the early 1950s the Stephens family had moved back from Glasgow (home of the Mother) to the Manchester area (home of the Father) and settled there. Frederick J. - the only child of the family, was enlisted at the Lord Derby Grammar School in the late 1950s, and from there was awarded an Apprenticeship in Printing - at the concern of F. Collins and Co., Printers, in Bury - a small township just north of Manchester. Originally working as a Compositor (a setter of type, by hand), the entire working career was spent in and around printing and publishing, in every capacity within the industry, and at all levels.


Publishing history

Having pursued many areas of collecting since childhood (when war souvenirs from the Third Reich were relatively common place in post-war Britain) the concept of producing a book about Third Reich edged weapons became a viable possibility through a first-hand understanding of the printing trade, and how to get a book self-published. It was this opportunity that opened the way for many other future publications.



         1965: A guide to Nazi daggers, swords and bayonets, F. J. Stephens. Privately published by the author.

         1968: Bayonets : an illustrated history and reference guide, Arms & Armour Press, London.

         1970-71 "Militaria Magazine", journal devoterd to Militaria collectors, edited and published by the author under the imprint of Militaria Publications Ltd.

         1971: Collector's Pictorial Book of Bayonets, Arms & Armour Press, London, and also subsidiary edition published by Stackpole Books, USA

         1972: Italian Fascist daggers, Militaria Publications Ltd.

         1972: Edged Weapons of the Third Reich 1933-1945. Almark Publications Company Limited

         1973: Hitler Youth History, Organisation, Uniforms, and Insignia, Almark Pub. Co

         1975: Uniforms and Organisations of the Imperial German Army, 1900-1918, co-authored with Graham J. Maddocks, Almark Publications Ltd

         1975: Weapons and Uniforms of the USSR, co-authored with Ian V. Hogg and John Batchelor, published by Purnell and Sons Ltd., London. Also translated and published as Waffen und Uniformen der Sowjetarmee, pub. Heyne Bildpaperback, Munchen, 1975

         1976: Edged Weapons: A Collectors' Guide, Spurbooks, Bourne End, Buckinghamshire.

         1976: REPRODUCTION RECOGNITION, Privately published by the author, Milton Keynes; Revised and expanded edition, published 1981 by Militaria Collector Inc., Sepulveda, California.

         1978: German Army Uniforms 1935-45 Insignia, Arms & Equipment, Almark Publications Ltd.

         1980: Fighting Knives: Illustrated Guide to Fighting Knives and Military Survival Weapons of the World, Arms & Armour Press, London. Subsidiary editions published in Canada, USA, and Australia. Translated editions, published as Kampfmesser, Motorbuch Verlag, Munchen; and an Italian language edition, by Tuttostoria, Milan.

         1985: The Bayonet: An Evolution and History, co-authored with Roger D. C. Evans, and privately published by Militaria Publications, Milton Keynes.

         1989: Daggers Swords and Bayonets of the Third Reich, Patrick Stephens, Ltd.

         1990: The ALCOSO Sales Catalogue (1937). Introductory text article to a reprint edition of this catalogue.


All information is provided by F. J. Stephens and all permission given.

This information is also free to use at Wikipedia, permission given by Stephens and webmaster