1840 STYLE CAVALRY OFFICER’S SABER WITH AMES 1861 DATED AND INSPECTED BLADE

$4,000.00
Originally $4,500.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 870-114

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To Order:
Call 717-334-0347,
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This unusual cavalry officer’s saber utilizes an 1840 style cavalry officer’s hilt and an 1861 dated and inspected blade by Ames. The sword is in excellent condition overall and the pommel shows no sign of re-peening or dismounting of the hilt and patina of the brass looks undisturbed. The hilt is the 1840 regulation for cavalry officers with sharkskin wrap and triple wire binding (central coiled strand with simple twisted border wires) showing no swell in the grip. The brass is deeply cast and chased, with an aged patina showing some gilt in the recessed areas and on the inside of the guard. The particular rendering of the cast motifs suggests the hilt is by Lunenschloss, whose work will be most familiar from Tiffany retailed sabers with a “PDL” mark. The pommel is decorated with laurel leaves and a central rosette on the edge, but the cap brim and tang mound are plain.  The knucklebow is cast with floral motifs and a similar rosette where it meets the pommel (instead of an Ames scroll.) The quillon is cast with an acanthus fan with double-scroll, Doric capital type base. The branches are cast with laurel leaves inside and out where they meet the counterguard. The blade pad is in place.

The blade is a fairly straight-forward 1860 pattern, etched on the reverse ricasso with the typical “Ames Mfg. Co. / Chicopee / Mass.” address in a scroll, and stamped on the obverse ricasso, “U.S. / G.G.S / 1861.” The blade is plain, in the bright, and has a good edge with no nicks, and good point. The scabbard fits fine, is regulation as well, has all bands, rings, throat and drag. There are no dents and the metal is smooth, without pitting. The surface show thin remnants of brown lacquer, mixed with underlying silver gray. There is a small J.H. inspector’s stamp on the drag, which shows a little wear to the lower edge.

Ames supplied a small number of cavalry officers’ sabers directly to U.S. Ordnance for them to sell to army officers. Fifty are recorded in 1861 and another 44 in 1865. The company also seems to have had a hand in fifty ordnance-purchased imported cavalry officers’ sabers made by Bleckmann. And, there are a very few “transitional” Ames 1840/60 cavalry officer’s sabers. This saber seems more likely to have been a privately ordered sword, perhaps by an enlisted man recently commissioned, who wanted to keep a lucky cavalry saber, or a cost-conscious officer who followed regulations in the hilting of his saber, but saved money by supplying a government inspected and accepted Ames blade and scabbard. This was formerly in the Kevin Hoffman collection, but we do not have any notes from him pertaining to it.    [SR][ph:L]

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