1862 DATED MANSFIELD AND LAMB U.S. CAVALRY SABER

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Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 2024-443

scabbard dated 1862. The company supplied 10,408 sabers in 1861 and 1862, and almost three times that from 1863 to 1865. This one is in very good condition and early enough for service in most major battles. The company ran the factory town of Forrestdale, RI, with a cotton mill and scythe factory, the latter making the production of cavalry sabers easier than for most contractors. They produced all their own parts and focused on their military contracts for enlisted sabers rather than officer’s sabers and other distractions.

This has a medium, undisturbed patina to the brass hilt. The black leather grip wrap has good color, and just a few small, slight wear spots on the top near the pommel. The wire is in place and tight, thought anchored near the guard with a small tack indicating it may have come loose at some point. The blade pad is in place on the underside of the guard. The blade is smooth metal, bright mixed with some thin gray in color. The edge and point are good, showing just two very shallow nicks a couple inches back from the tip that are more evident to the touch than the eye. The reverse ricasso is marked: “Mansfield/ & / Lamb / Forrestdale RI” in the firm’s characteristic oval with just some rubbing at the left and right edges. The obverse is marked with U.S. inspector’s initials and date: “U.S. / DFC / 1862” on the other. The initials belong to David F. Clark, whose career as an inspector lasted more than twenty years and is perhaps best known for his later work inspecting Colt Single-Action Armies. He was ordered to Smithfield, R.I., to inspect Mansfield and Lamb sabers on June 18, 1862, and worked there until August 8, giving a tight time-frame for this marking. The scabbard is the regulation pattern, complete with throat, rings, bands and drag. The metal is smooth, brown with a few spots of gray peeking through near the drag, no pitting but a few spots of superficial dusty brown near the throat and drag, one small ding on the back edge on the obverse, below the lower ring band, one broader, shallow indention on that side near the drag and two on the other in about the same spot.

The saber was the quintessential cavalry weapon. This would make a nice addition to a cavalry collection and given the date would be particularly appropriate for display with an early-war pattern saber belt and accouterments.  [sr][ph:L]

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