EXCAVATED MARYLAND BOTTONY CROSS

$3,250.00 SOLD

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Item Code: 2023-2921

Adapted from the Crossland arms as used on the Maryland 1854 state seal, the Bottony Cross uses straight arms with trefoil ends and was frequently used by Marylanders cut off from home and serving in Confederate forces in a display of state pride and unity. The headquarters flag of Maryland Major General Bradley Johnson with a prominent Bottony Cross in red is perhaps the best known example, but individual soldiers wore a variety of homemade, camp-made, commercial and even jeweler-grade pins.

This one was excavated at a picket post located near “Camp St. Mary’s,” the 1863-64 winter camp of the Confederate “Maryland Line” at Hanover Junction, Virginia. It is brass, fairly plain, showing largely an olive green patina with some brown. The reverse is clearly indicated by somewhat less attention to the finishing and signs of having a pin, likely the standard T-bar style, and catch-hook mounted on the reverse. The other side shows some light corrosion, but was clearly better finished, shows a spot of gray indicating it may have had a silver wash and the edges show a slight bevel. The cross shows a shallow, diagonal crease across two arms, whether from a digger’s tool or wartime damage we can’t tell. It is stable, though the reverse of one arm shows a shallow fracture line from whatever struck it on the face.

Maryland is the quintessential Civil War state with families split by loyalty and supplying troops to both sides, who fought more than once on its soil.  [sr][ph:m/L]

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