VERY NICE UNTOUCHED CIRCA 1821 AMERICAN OFFICER’S SADDLE VALISE

$2,250.00 ON HOLD

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 1097-15

This cylindrical leather saddle valise has wonderful embossed designs on its cover and on the end caps, which also carry the large die-struck spread-winged American eagles adopted in 1821. That design for eagles had been proposed by Commissary General Callendar Irvine in April 1820 and gained quick acceptance by the U.S. Army, being specified in the 1821 regulations for use on the bell-crown shako, and became very popular among militia as well. With some variations they remained popular until the 1851 patterns took over.

This valise is a nice example of an officer’s saddle valise of the period, a non-regulation piece for a regular army officer, or a mounted militia officer of some means. The cover is embossed, or impressed, at left and right with a large 32-pointed star on a stippled circle that shows between the star points. This motif is repeated on the circular end panels of the valise, where they are fitted with the die-struck eagles at the center. The panels on the cover of the valise show small oblong or eye-shaped impressed designs at their centers that have a border with serrated edges and small circles within. These same designs may be on the end panels, but hidden by the applied eagles, and were also applied to the lower center of the cover.

The valise is fitted with two flat loops for straps to secure it behind the saddle. It is closed with two straps and buckles, all present. The interior is lined with a greenish-blue patterned fabric in very good condition that has a rectangular paper label pasted at the center, once bearing a maker’s address, but now illegible.

A collector’s tag tied to the valise states that it come from the “Corvell Estate Auction / Romulus, NY. 1986.” No one of that last name shows up among regular army officers before 1900. It might have made its way into the estate from another branch of the family, but most likely the original owner was a member of the N.Y. Militia and probably from Seneca County.

This is very nice piece of military saddle furniture, completely untouched and in excellent condition. The seams are tight and the leather surface, while showing some scuffs, is very nice and has never been hit with any polish or leather dressing. The eagles have a nice untouched patina and show some traces of a silver finish, which was regulation for infantry from 1822 to 1832, but might vary in use by militia or officers with less regard for regulations.  Measures 17” in width and 6” in diameter. This would be an outstanding addition to collection or pre-Civil War officer’s equipment or horse gear.  [sr]

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