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Any American Civil War items anyone?

Article about: Here are some of my American Civil War cavalry sabers. Left to right : Ames 1840 Cavalry saber, dated 1846, PDL Officers Cavalry saber, S&K second contract cavalry saber, Thomas Griswold

  1. #11


    I was visiting a collector friend recently out east who liquidated his Imperial collection ( I picked up one nice pickelhaube) to move into ACW collecting. He has some awesome Kepi's and swords, other items as well.

    I like to collect what I consider to be iconic pieces from various militaries over the years. For example while I don't collect Japanese or US items I have a nice USMC and 101 Airborne helmet and a selection of Japanese helmets. A Union and Confederate Kepi are on my list but as was said there are so many fakes I will wait. A (real) Confederate battle flag would be unreal. That is an iconic piece!

    William do you have photos of your old one? A fave war movie of mine is Gettysburg.

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  3. #12


    I just picked up a civil war discharge in a family grouping very very cheap
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  4. #13


    Interesting thread and with the sheer amount of soldiers around for the civil war you would have thought there would have been more kit around!

  5. #14


    A lot of stuff continued to be used/issued/re-furbished after
    the Civil War - such as the NCO sword I posted above
    - which may have been carried on someone's belt
    as late as the 1890's.
    Also, because it was such an important era in US history,
    many relatively common items are still kept and
    treasured by families.........


  6. #15


    So like everywhere Steve, there will be a lot of gear in private collections, there must be uniforms around, equipment etc

  7. #16


    Hello Timothy, True it is, the Civil War stuff in garage sales. I remember seeing the bullseye canteens and the blue covers all the time, but the little wooden drum canteens were abit tougher to find and were usually dry and the bands falling off them when you saw them. One instance that is burned indelibly into my memory was going to a church rummage sale in the church basement. The first thing I saw when I walked in the door was a Union Officer's blue uniform on a mannequin. It had the wide brim hat, the sword belt(the family decided to Keep the sword that went in it), the Pants and the high leather black boots. It even had the red silk sash. Big gold epaulets,brass buttons -everything. I ran right to it and saw, to my horror, saw they were pinning a Sold sign onto it and were holding it for a guy who "had just bought it,like 5 minutes ago" and had gone to get his station wagon to bring it home in. The price? The tag was still pinned to almost vomit-inducing $35! Naturally I offered to double,triple or Whatever price they cared to name, but "sorry, we just couldn't do that! A sale is a sale!"...This happened around the late 60's or so-I can't recall the exact date.

    So, yes-you could still find amazing pieces out there in the sales and such 50 years ago! Just about every flea market or big sale had a barrel or 2 of CW bayonets for a couple of bucks apiece. Usually still had the sheaths as well. WWI stuff was usually found stuffed under the tables in boxes-of little or no interest to many people. Canister gasmasks with pouches, helmets with crinkly dry liners, canteens, garrison belts...all that stuff could be found usually for a dollar or 2. The Spiked Helmets were a little harder-they generally went for 30 or 40 bucks. 50 ,maybe, for a steel body spike. Those were the days. I remember buying an entire US WWI uniform-tunic, pants,all the extras, for $30. Even had a pair of still soft leather machine gunner gauntlets with the trigger finger-it came with the set. Along with the personal papers and booklets still in the pockets, etc. Unfortunately, those times are as dead and gone as the old vets themselves.....The idea of faking any of it was almost unheard of. Why would you make fake stuff of That "junk"? A far cry from today's hobby by any way you look at it!

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  8. #17


    I Might have a photo of the Alabama flag, Doug-I'll have to hunt through my albums if I get time. As I recall, it May be in the one photo-it was hanging on the wall at the time. Nowadays, you would never Dream of hanging such a textile. It was made of heavy homespun cloth and featured the stars from the back side through cut outs in the fabric. It was the classic CSA "X" with stars on the red background field and had a heavy coarse white cloth edge strip to attach it to the pole. To find such an iconic flag today would be the equivalent of the price of a good sports car, I know. It ended up in the collection of a oil company owner in Michigan and I remember that he had papers made up for it from some museum expert and I haven't heard of it since. I suppose I probably should have hung onto it, but back then you could still Find such pieces if you looked hard enough and had the right contact. The ones you see today are usually tattered rags now. I'll have to hunt through the photos(now you've got me curious about it) and see if I can find one of it!

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  9. #18


    Thats pretty amazing Wagriff! Its hard to believe WWI stuff was jammed under the table and sold as junk. For a long time I wondered what veterans thought of this hobby. I got my answer (albeit indirectly) from a German veteran who I was chatting with. He was showing me his pictures and I noticed one were he was in his waffenrock with a dagger. The collector inside of me convinced me to ask him a question which caught him completely off-guard. "What colour was your daggers grip?". He looked at me for a moment, clearly taken back by this question which was very out of place after my string of much more related questions. He eventually answered quietly and clearly slightly confused "It was white" then in a louder voice he said something to the effect of "But that is just old junk" and he continued to flip through his photo album. I guess this is how most people, then and now, view this sort of stuff, including the veterans. To the general population its just "Old junk". Who would even want a Civil War uniform anyways? its just boring war crap. Kind of funny how we will barter over a 70 year old pair of grey pants when you think about it.

  10. #19


    Gifted CW artist/collector Domenic Troiani found a 'Berdan Sharpshooter'
    tunic in a church bazzar one rainy afternoon - it was in a box of WWI
    wool stuff that sold very cheaply. Another guy there bought all
    of the WWI stuff from Dom.

    Extremely rare, it could be valued at over $100,000.00 ..........
    Last edited by Walkwolf; 12-07-2013 at 07:29 AM. Reason: Additional text.........


  11. #20


    Troiani has done some Superb prints. I always liked his one of NB Forrest!

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

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