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Original U.S. Civil War French Made Model 1832 Artillery Short Sword with Scabbard, Frog and Belt With Buckle - French Model 1816

Regular price $1,695.00

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is a lovely patinated example of a Model 1832 Artillery Short sword. This is actually a French made Model 1816 that was modified and then pressed into US Federal service. This design of foot artillery sword has a straight, heavy double-edged steel blade. There are two side-by-side fullers, starting just below the hilt. Then, after a space of 11/16", there is a single center fuller that extends toward the blade's spear shaped point. The overall blade length is approximately 19 1/4''. The hilt and cross guard are cast and partly machined brass, and are no marked.

The grips have been molded in a scalloped eagle feather design with no visible rivets. The pommel is decorated on each side with a heavily embossed American eagle, with shield, holding arrows in his left talon and an olive branch in his right talon. The eagle's head faces towards its right. The straight cross quillons terminate in disk shaped finials, which are in great shape. Overall the grip has a lovely aged patina, with no signs of aggressive cleaning.

The blade on this example looks to have seen long service and some past oxidation, which was then cleaned away. The blade is still solid but does have the appearance of being in relic condition. The blade has heavy pitting present throughout. There are some nicks on the edge of the blade, so it definitely did see some level of use in service.

The black leather scabbard is in very good condition, with a great look and mellow gold color on the brass fittings. The leather still retains much of the black finish, though it is cracked in areas and the leather has become hard, pulling out all of the original seam stitching. There is some minor denting on the brass drag, but nothing too extensive. The included leather frog and belt with buckle are in equally attractive condition and appear to have been paired for quite some time. The leather is still strong with areas of finish loss and tearing.

Comes more than ready for display!

Blade Length: 19 1/4"
Blade Style: Double Edged "Gladius" style
Overall length: 25 1/4“
Crossguard: 4 1/4”
Scabbard Length: 20"

Model 1832 Foot Artillery Sword
The U.S. Model 1832 foot artillery short-sword has a 6-inch (15 cm) solid brass hilt, a 4-inch (10 cm) crossguard, and a blade usually 19 inches (48 cm) in length. This model was the first sword contracted by the U.S. with the Ames Manufacturing Company of Springfield (later Chicopee), Massachusetts, with production starting in 1832. In later years, it was also imported and supplied by W.H. Horstmann & Sons of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. As a personal side arm, it was intended for use by the regular or foot artillery regiments of the United States Army and remained in service until 1872 for use by foot artillerymen. It was the issued sword for sergeants and musicians of infantry regiments from 1832 until 1840. As most artillery regiments were trained and equipped as infantry prior to 1861 a single weapon for both types of troops made sense. It replaced the earlier Starr pattern sword used throughout the 1820s. While the design was impractical for actual combat, it is believed that artillerymen put this weapon to other uses, such as clearing brush or creating trails. It was an effective tool for cutting paths through the Florida swamps during the Second Seminole War, which occurred during the time it was issued to infantry sergeants, drummers and fifers. This is somewhat corroborated by the French nickname for their version of the sword, coupe choux (cabbage cutter). The last Ames contract for this sword was completed in 1862, although as a stock item it continued to be listed in company catalogs for decades afterwards.

The design was based on the French foot artillery short sword of 1816, which with minor changes was basically repeated in 1831. The French model was based on the Roman gladius, the standard sword of the Roman legionaries.

French versions can be distinguished from American versions by the hilt design, manufacturers' marks (French manufacturers include Châtellerault, St. Etienne, Talabot, and Thiebaut), and the lack of U.S. markings. Swords supplied by Ames typically bore an eagle on the blade until the Mexican–American War, whereas those made during the civil war by Confederate arsenals were typically unmarked. The Ames Model 1832 has a hilt with an eagle cast into the pommel and a scaled grip surface. French versions have either textured grips (model 1816) or ringed grips (model 1831), and like later English models a plain or smooth pommel on the hilt.

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