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Author Topic: What are the odds?  (Read 667 times)


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What are the odds?
« on: July 12, 2018, 08:13:58 PM »
I know this isn't projectile relate and I may have asked this before. Moderator feel free to delete if not appropriate. I have a Ames Model 1840 heavy cavalry sabre dated 1857. Very fine condition. I was wondering what are the odds of it being carried by a southern trooper. I know we will NEVER know for sure. But I am under the impression that a good majority of the pre war cavalryman were southern and likewise switched their allegiance to the Confederacy. In my opinion if these are true facts and not myth or wishful thinking then wouldn't that make my sword a good candidate for Southern use. As I already said it is impossible to ever know for sure. Come on guys give me some hope.  ;) ;D

I will copy this post to another forum for more feedback if appropriate.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2018, 08:16:07 PM by speedenforcer »
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Re: What are the odds?
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2018, 09:35:51 PM »
I have a friend whose g-g-grandfather enlisted in the !st Va. Cavalry as a private, and rose to a 2nd lieutenant until wounded in Nov. of 1864.  She has his 1860 Ames sabre, 1851 Navy Colt revolver (4th model) & holster, Spencer repeating rifle, powder flask, two stirrups, saddlebags, and one boot cut off of his foot - he was shot in the ankle).  The sabre, revolver (made in 1863), & rifle all were originally Yankee issue.

I have a .44 Remington revolver that belonged to my g-g-grandfather (a Confederate major) - he improved his inventory along the way.

I have a Merrill carbine with the original owner's name (a Union cavalry
man) inscribed on the brass patchbox.  He was captured, held in Cahaba or Andersonville, when the war ended he was traveling up the Mississippi River on the Sultana - the boiler blew (the steamboat was way overloaded, but Confederate agent Robert Louden claimed he planted a coal torpedo) resulting in this country's biggest American maritime disaster (the original owner of the carbine was scalded to death).  Carved on the stock is "C S" - it looks period, I figure the carbine was captured when he was.

I have another friend who has his Confederate major g-g-grandfather's Colt Navy revolver - inside the holster is stenciled the name and unit of the Union cavalryman it belonged to (he was captured, & hanged, on Nov. 6, 1864 - he was participating in "The Burning" of the Shenandoah Valley, & he deserved it!).

The obvious point is a soldier (esp. a Confederate) would improve his inventory if given the opportunity.  And since your sabre is dated 1857, it could have started off as Confederate in 1861.  JEB Stuart was wearing his U.S. issued eagle sword belt plate when mortally wounded, I think he kept his prewar sabre, too.  I don't know what the odds are, but you can always be thinking "maybe" ...
« Last Edit: July 13, 2018, 12:25:28 PM by Lamar »


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Re: What are the odds?
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2018, 09:07:45 PM »
Actually, Lamar, 1,200 1860 dated Ames cavalry sabers were sent to Virginia per Thillmann Civil War Cavalry & Artillery Sabers page 81.  Thillman goes on to write that the embargo on arms shipments to the South did not commence fully until Lincoln was inaugurated on March 4th, 1861.