CONFEDERATE MOVABLE TONGUE, WISHBONE FRAME BUCKLE

$1,850.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 766-1982

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One of the more distinctive Confederate belt buckles is the frame pattern, which comes in several styles with fixed and movable tongues in different shapes and configurations. This is the classic movable tongue style sometimes called the “forked tongue” pattern and sometimes the “wishbone pattern,” both for obvious reasons. The buckle is simple, practical, and light-weight, but robust. It would be fitted with a plain leather belt sewn around the center bar and pierced with two rows of holes that would lessen the stress on a belt weighted by a cap box, bayonet (perhaps,) and possibly a cartridge box. These were easily made with both frame and tongue made of sand cast brass and were thus widely produced in a variety of sizes.

This one falls in the small or “baby” category. The face of the frame was file finished with sharp edges, inner and outer corners and beveled ends of the center bar, which is raised, on the reverse. Other treatment was no-nonsense. The back of the frame was left showing the rough signs of sand casting and while the top side of the tongue has rounded and beveled edges along both points and the solid base, the underside not only of the base, but also the points was left flat. Measures 68mm x 55mm.

For parallels see, for example Mullinax (1991) starting with Plate 254 and Keim, starting with Fig. 362, though the pattern is pictured and discussed in other sources. This is a very nice example of a classic Confederate buckle that was widely produced and used, and shows up in period photos of Confederate soldiers who managed to get their photographs taken with their gear on. This shows no damage and has a pleasing, uniform, deep olive-green patina.  [sr] [ph:m]

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