December 10, 2019 Edged Weapon, Armor & Militaria
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The live portion of this session begins on Tuesday, December 10, 2019.
Adopted in 1839 to mark the establishment of the Topographical Engineers as a separate organization from Engineer Corps, a separation that lasted until 1863. The organization was, small, elite, and intimately connected not just with the security of the country in the construction of forts and public works, but was crucial in the exploration of the American west and westward expansion of the country before the Civil War. The pattern is designed for field service, being a modification of the 1833 Dragoon Officer's Saber with a heavier scabbard, a fourth branch added to the reverse of the guard, and star-within-a-star cast in the quillon. Gilt coiled brass wire binding with sharkskin grip. Acorn and oak leaf design on the ferrule. Quill back blade, obverse etched with sunburst, N.P. Ames / Cutler / Springfield address, acorn and oak leaf scrolls, two displays of arms, lower with American shield, upper with pole and liberty cap, leafy vine terminates the etching with flame ends to the frosted panel. Reverse has sunburst at bottom, acorn and oak leaf scrolls, with "U.S. Topographical Engineers" etched in an oval panel with interior border of stars and terminating flames top and bottom. Overhead and American eagle with arrows and olive branch, drypoint etched E Pluribus Unum ribbon, with leafy vine overhead. Frosting terminates in flame points. Scabbard preserves gilt brass "TE" on US shield insignia at top below throat on obverse and gilt rectangular NP Ames maker plaque on reverse. CONDITION: Stellar. Scabbard is smooth metal, blue/brown in color, no dings or dents, just some very small brown age spots under the color and a tiny bit of freckling near the middle ring band. Rings, drag and throat in place. Gilt remaining on applied plaques. Hilt with bright gilt on brass. Gilt brass pommel cap hiding blade tang and nut are in place. Grip wrap and binding are superb. Blade frosting is very good and the etching is vivid. Blade pad in place. The Engineers consistently drew from the top of the class at West Point and were a small, elite group, and their arms are correspondingly rare. Lee and McClellan both started their careers in that branch of service. This is a very scarce sword in wonderful condition that would be near impossible to equal, let alone surpass, and is connected to a significant period of American history. A high point in any collection. (SR)
Name
Value
Blade Length
32 - 3/4"
Overall Length
38"
Paperwork
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Minimum Bid: $7,500.00
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Estimate: $15,000 - $25,000
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