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Old 28th December 2010, 12:24 AM   #31
Hotspur
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Lol Jeff,

Quote:
If you are discussing Peterson #18, I have never seen any one state the hilt is of German manufacture.


Maybe you should read Peterson writing that it is German in his description of #18 and begins that dialog with the information.

Out of the original context you replied

Quote:
Glen, Everyone agrees that there is no evidence Rose or Prahl cast brass. When I say everyone, that would include you

Along with the text for Peterson #18, you seem to overlook much of what I have related from Mowbray's eagle book.

Snipped from another section in your reply
Quote:
Until better information is found, or a better argument is made. The internet is a great source of information, but I think you have to start at the beginning and work your way up. That may involve actual paper.

You are now actually supporting my argument while being just as nice as pie, right? I am a bit familiar with the texts I have mentioned. Rather than act hurt by your take on my own research, I'll but shrug and ask that maybe you review some of the texts I have referenced for your own edification.

Cheers

GC
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Old 28th December 2010, 12:40 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
Lol Jeff,



Maybe you should read Peterson writing that it is German in his description of #18 and begins that dialog with the information.

Out of the original context you replied


Along with the text for Peterson #18, you seem to overlook much of what I have related from Mowbray's eagle book.

Snipped from another section in your reply

You are now actually supporting my argument while being just as nice as pie, right? I am a bit familiar with the texts I have mentioned. Rather than act hurt by your take on my own research, I'll but shrug and ask that maybe you review some of the texts I have referenced for your own edification.

Cheers

GC


All side issues, but, sure I will bite. Nowhere, in 1954 edition, does the description of sword #18 say the hilt is of German manufacture. I am not sure what you want. Is it this excellent 1954 work that you think outdates the 1992 Bazelon work?
To my knowledge not a single brass lion pommel and grip is discussed in Mowbrey's work. Do you think that Bazelon who is noted in the acknowledgements of that book is unaware of the pearls that only you seem to have gleamed? I have reviewed the text and you are talking about apples when the topic is oranges.
Ok I have answered you, now tell me where in the Medicus discredits the Brazelon article.

All the Best
Jeff

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Old 28th December 2010, 01:56 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff D
All side issues, but, sure I will bite. Nowhere, in 1954 edition, does the description of sword #18 say the hilt is of German manufacture. I am not sure what you want.
To my knowledge not a single brass lion pommel and grip is discussed in Mowbrey's work. I have reviewed the text and you are talking about apples when the topic is oranges.
Ok I have answered you, now tell me where in the Medicus discredits the Brazelon article.

All the Best
Jeff


My Revised edition 1996. Is it different than his description?

Quote:
18. "American Light Horse" Saber, 1785-1800

One of the sabers of the immediately post-Revolutionary period that has succeeded in capturing the imagination of sword collectors is a German made weapon that has received the designation...

The conclusion of that paragraph/description of the sword describes the cast grip lion pommel of #18.

In an earlier post, I mention the bulk of his writing of #18 is about the overall bulk of similar sabers with organic and bound grips but otherwise similar.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

You might find this interesting in the light of Bazelon and his notes on Prahl and found elsewhere.

Quote:
Northern Liberties Of Philadelphiaa, May 22nd, 1777.

To the Honourable Thomas Wharton, Junior, Esquire, President and Commander-in-Chief of the State of Pennsylvania, <tea.:

The Petition of Lewis Prahl of the Northern Liberties of the City of Philadelphia, Gunsmith, Most Respectfully Sheweth:

That your Honours petitioner entered into a Contract with Colonel Benjamin Flower to furnish him with One thousand Swords for the Use of the Horsemen raised in this State, of which he is obliged to deliver at least two dozen every week, and that your petitioner hath Sixteen Workmen, (whose names are hereunto annexed,) in his employ, in the making of the said Swords, all of which are Associators and belong to different Companies of the Militia, the several Captains whereof insist on their doing Military duty, notwithstanding the Resolve of Congress of the 12th of April last, by which the Work is greatly delayed.

Your Petitioner therefore humbly prays that your Honour would be pleased to take the Premisses into Consideration and direct what your Honour in his Wisdom shall think meet. And Your Petitioner in duty bound Shall ever Pray,

LEWIS PRAHL.

1. William Brown, 9. Christian Cane,

2. Caspar Christ, 10. Thomas Quigsall,

3. Jacob Frey, 11. Paul Dawson,

4. Robert Man, 12. George Strebey,

5. Patrick Vaun, 13. Lewis Smith,

6. Conrad Waltner, 14. Nathaniel Bean,

7. Thomas Hltt, 15. Jos. Fanckleberry,

8. Matthew Grimes, 16. Adam Layer.

Lewis Prahl


Now all we need is lion pommel cast spiral grips to go with them? Bazelon does not describe the sword contract any better than that, nor assign a maker to his grooved doggie in the PA collection. Does he do so in the 1992 article? Or, is he (as I read it) starting his foundation with the same type of information I add here above and Perterson's old testament (which is as often disputed as are other author's wrks and description)

~~~~
What Bazelon does not describe may well be the grail as yet unfounded but Prahl was making brass gun mounts as of 1777 (also found elsewhere).

There were earlier brass foundries in Philly and that I do not deny Prahl either. There are some decent histories out there. Here is one I read through.
http://books.google.com/books?id=8uYkAAAAYAAJ

~~~~~~~~~~~~
As to Flayderman and Stuart Mowbray in contention regarding Bazelon's article and the earlier posts regarding Flayderman's own experience, as well as sales; I find Medicus as less supportive of the conjecture that appears to drive this particular discussion. For a third time, I now point to the lion pommel sabers listed in that book as counter to the Flayderman sale descriptions posted earlier. As the elder Mowbray's notes and Flayderman's collaboration I mention them as less absolute about a great many swords and offer less speculation than earlier sword books.

Again, I have not read Bazelon's article and have only other's read on that. I have though read in this thread that some of what is definitive of Bazelon's article is presented only as second hand interpretations that could be as misread as I feel my own posts here are.

Cheers

GC
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Old 28th December 2010, 02:21 AM   #34
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I am sorry if this entry has caused a stink, nor did I see it coming. I didn't mean to imply that this sword type was the original American prototype, although that is the conclusion Flayderman came to in that long-ago auction catalog from the 1990's. I also realise that new information is coming to the surface everyday and I am open to it, but it still seems to me that for an absolute positive answer, the jury is still out. I am not an expert in this (or probably any other edged weapon area, but particularly weak here, thus the reason for my posting). If I have seemed closed to any of the information thus posted, I assure you, I am not, just digesting it a piece at a time. I would hate to see anyone leave this forum because of a difference of opinion. I welcome controversy IF it serves to shed light on certain forms of esoteric weapons.

I am not posting this to defend or deny American make, nor an I going to argue that this is private purchase. My struggle lies in a definitive answer as to whether any other examples of this sword exist in any other collection pointing away to a strictly American usage. It is not fair to treat this as the lowly import sword when i feel it belongs side-by-side with it's iron compatriots, many of which BTW during the Revolution might have foreign-imported parts/blades/etc. With that, I am also going to step back (but not run away) from this thread until those with more information step forth.

Jeff, I do hope you will start a separate thread featuring your sword, but it may also involve controversy in this admittedly obscure time period in American history (post-Revolution up to the great eagle-head era).

Mark

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Old 28th December 2010, 02:41 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
My Revised edition 1996. Is it different than his description?


The conclusion of that paragraph/description of the sword describes the cast grip lion pommel of #18.

In an earlier post, I mention the bulk of his writing of #18 is about the overall bulk of similar sabers with organic and bound grips but otherwise similar.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


The quote is the same, point being.....? Oh I see that 38 years before the article in discussion Peterson implied that the Hilt is German. Ok I will give that to you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
You might find this interesting in the light of Bazelon and his notes on Prahl and found elsewhere.



Now all we need is lion pommel cast spiral grips to go with them? Bazelon does not describe the sword contract any better than that, nor assign a maker to his grooved doggie in the PA collection. Does he do so in the 1992 article? Or, is he (as I read it) starting his foundation with the same type of information I add here above and Perterson's old testament (which is as often disputed as are other author's wrks and description)

~~~~



Thanks that is interesting. No Bazelon does not ascribe a specific maker. If five or six shops are casting hilts and 3 or four guards, who would you say the maker was. would you label them with one?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
What Bazelon does not describe may well be the grail as yet unfounded but Prahl was making brass gun mounts as of 1777 (also found elsewhere).

There were earlier brass foundries in Philly and that I do not deny Prahl either. There are some decent histories out there. Here is one I read through.
http://books.google.com/books?id=8uYkAAAAYAAJ

~~~~~~~~~~~~


Are you on my side of this? If true would you risk the embargoes during the Napoleonic and French revolution to get imported hilts for the above contract?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
As to Flayderman and Stuart Mowbray in contention regarding Bazelon's article and the earlier posts regarding Flayderman's own experience, as well as sales; I find Medicus as less supportive of the conjecture that appears to drive this particular discussion. For a third time, I now point to the lion pommel sabers listed in that book as counter to the Flayderman sale descriptions posted earlier. As the elder Mowbray's notes and Flayderman's collaboration I mention them as less absolute about a great many swords and offer less speculation than earlier sword books.


It was not the purpose of the book to prove or disprove anything. I don't know of any controversial issues mentioned in the book, even dates. The book was to showcase the massive collection and to give descriptions only. Controversies had no place there, but are saved for other venues like here and the literature.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
Again, I have not read Bazelon's article and have only other's read on that. I have though read in this thread that some of what is definitive of Bazelon's article is presented only as second hand interpretations that could be as misread as I feel my own posts here are.

Cheers

GC


Glen your posts may have been misread by me, but, not intentionally I can assure you. I have most certainly questioned them. I have not been convinced by your arguments, do not take it personally. If the only part of the Medicus book that you feels outdates the 1992 article is a lack of a ringing endorsement of the theory, then I remain unconvinced. That would be counter to its purpose.
In my original post I suggested that the Bazelon article be reviewed to counter your observations, I still believe this. It is not now or ever been a 'blow off' . I could care less if you do, I do suspect you will not feel it is a waste of time. If my scanner was actually working I would try to get it to you.
Mark, As in the original post I still feel that the best theory on the origin of your hilt is Revolution-Federal period Philadelphia.

All the Best
Jeff
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Old 28th December 2010, 03:17 AM   #36
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Hi Jeff

Quote:
In my original post I suggested that the Bazelon article be reviewed to counter your observations, I still believe this. It is not now or ever been a 'blow off' . I could care less if you do, I do suspect you will not feel it is a waste of time. If my scanner was actually working I would try to get it to you.


Indeed and even though I am a two finger typist as well, I often manage to transcribe quite a bit of text for others. Nor do I offer the Medicus book as a whole proof but it is certainly better described than a lot of the same (types of and at times exactly those) swords in other texts and sales.

Cheers

GC
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Old 28th December 2010, 03:28 AM   #37
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Thank you, Jeff, for giving me your opinion on the proper title for this sword. It was my assumption as well, based on the article (I have a photocopy that Man-At-Arms sent me as that issue is long out of print and hard to come by). I am unfortunately a Luddite and don't own a scanner. If the Forum has someone I could fax it to, I would be happy to provide it??
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Old 28th December 2010, 03:57 AM   #38
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Mark Cloke of www.oldswords.com/ is eager to share such articles for all and would gladly take submissions to add to an ever growing database of Man At Arms articles.

As mentioned before, I take photos of pages instead of a scanner (I do have a dead one of those here). I realize there are copyright issues as well but we are more often relating book information with credit for the source and being used for educational purposes. I am kind of old fashioned as well as not having a fax set up.

Cheers

GC
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Old 28th December 2010, 04:02 AM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
Mark Cloke of www.oldswords.com/ is eager to share such articles for all and would gladly take submissions to add to an ever growing database of Man At Arms articles.

As mentioned before, I take photos of pages instead of a scanner (I do have a dead one of those here). I realize there are copyright issues as well but we are more often relating book information with credit for the source and being used for educational purposes. I am kind of old fashioned as well as not having a fax set up.

Cheers

GC


Just so happens that Santa brought my daughter a new camera. I will see what I can her to due this week.

All the Best
Jeff
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Old 28th December 2010, 04:23 AM   #40
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In leu of better pics, here is the original piece from Dmitry's site before our trade-

www.sailorinsaddle.com/product.aspx?id=1202
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Old 29th December 2010, 12:20 AM   #41
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Here is the Mowbray page that better describes the sketched image of the primitive eagle shown in Gilkerson's Boarders Away.



I've no doubt that Gilkerson's "finest material" is drawn from the elder's pages.

If image sizing is an issue, feel free to pm me with your email and we can go from there. I am on dial up but usually have some time to wait for downloads. I recently received an inquiry re eagles and the file was 9.9mb, which I had in hand after an hour's download. The shot above was with automatic camera settings with flash and other light. Many cell phones are better picture takers than my old Canon.

Cheers

GC
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Old 29th December 2010, 02:56 AM   #42
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Thank you, Glenn, for a much clearer pic of the eagle pommel sword that was but a drawn example on Gilkerson's. Upon seeing this, it becomes clear from the details that it isn't pertinent to our discussion. I must get a copy of Mowbray's book one of these days. I appreciate the clarification, but still hold true that the lion hilts were strictly American used, if not American made. "If" being the key word. Still happy with the piece all-around, though.
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Old 29th December 2010, 04:35 AM   #43
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Gosh, my wish list for books goes on forever. The Mowbray eagle title has a lot more information in it than just the galleries of the Medicus title with crisp succinct attributions. Mowbray (as I'm sure Bazelon's article is) took some time for both hard notes and speculation Some of my earlier posts while maybe sounding harsh do go to how Mowbray describes foundries in Philly and the cast hilts specifically.

As I am also an avid tracker of the Osborn weeping eagles as shown earlier, the definition of castings is not necessarily and absolute of origin for the assembly of the swords, or indeed the castings themselves. However, the cruder grips and longer blades do fall out of the norm for a lot of imports and that does lean towards the American side of the fence, while still not being conclusive as to manufacture. All quite definitely meant for American use, as with the sword of this subject. As with some other deeply ringed or spiraled grips, I also have thought them as "must be American" until seeing some of the same patterns turning up in Birmingham work. As mentioned, I am not one to ignore that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence but something etched in stone (such as so and so was casting these grips) or in a city's journal would lead to a hard conclusion.

It is that one is happy with an acquisition that is the most important. The sword does look like it was assembled, as the guard and handle look to be different metals All good points for some of the parts being American made.

Cheers

GC
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Old 29th December 2010, 04:47 PM   #44
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Apparently, 15 y.o. girls do not consider helping their dad with his "retarded sword stuff" as quality time. I will pick up a new scanner this week, and hopefully scan the article on friday.

All the Best
Jeff
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Old 29th December 2010, 06:40 PM   #45
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Reference 15 y.o. girl...Yes, I have one of those as well. She's the quintessential poster child for the American teen. We parents are just idiots, etc, etc.

Glenn, that you for pointing me to this valuable reference of Mowbray's. I have browsed his other books, but not the one you show pics from. I'll definitiely add it to the wish list.
Yes, I also thought it was assembled here with the slightly more primitive slot guard. I'm still wondering if the guard is either copper, brass that has pickled with age or rose brass. Does anyone out there know if there is a non-destructive way of testing/differentiating between copper and brass? I don't want to hurt the patina, though. I've only seen a few swords with copper fittings over the years, most from the Revolution and those just in small fixtures/fittings. Or am I wrong on this? (Have to look through Neumann's again...)
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Old 29th December 2010, 10:39 PM   #46
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In reading around outside of books and regarding the cast hilts while on a Widmann expedition, I came across a recent public uploading of a Man At Arms August 2010 article. It is in two parts and is in general reference for U.S. Marines swords but ancillary to the current discussion. It is in two parts but relates a good bit of early Philadelphia sword making. These perhaps a good bit later but the German/Prussian connections and ties are still there throughout Widmann and Horstmann operations.

www.bcadapa.org/smullen1-sm.pdf
www.bcadapa.org/smullen2-sm.pdf

A pair of 1788 type swords had come my way from Stanley a year of so ago. I forwarded the links to Mark at Old Swords and they should be listed there now as well. you may have to register for the articles section.
http://www.oldswords.com/resources/articles.php

This seems to be a happy lot of Pa folk. Dealers and collectors.
http://www.bcadapa.org/

Cheers

GC
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Old 30th December 2010, 04:47 AM   #47
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I had skimmed through the Man-At-Arms article, but at the time, had not noted the implications of it (I also didn't have the lion hilt yet). Fascinating stuff. Thanks for posting it in full (you have a great scanner as everything came out crystal clear!).
Now I don't want to sound like a dunce, but I want to make sure I took the same info from the article. Widmann and later Horstman did make these brass one-piece pommel/grips and guards? The blades were imported, but the guards were marked with these American makers? I know they came later in sword-making vs the item being discussed, but still an interesting step in the direction of brass casting.

I used the OldSwords site for many years and was a member back when it was free- . Yes, I do have to sign up and check out that article. I've talked with Mr Cloke via email forever ago with questions on naval swords. I've likewise bought at least one of Mr Long's swords awhile back. I'll try to "upgrade" to the site soon.
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Old 30th December 2010, 08:08 AM   #48
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Oh, I see I misread an earlier post. You took pics and no scanner use. Wow, that's one good camera.
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Old 31st December 2010, 07:59 AM   #49
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Default Brass, brass and more brass...

http://www.ushistory.org/carpenters.../calltoarms.htm
http://www.thayeramericana.com/back...h/research7.pdf
http://massmoments.org/moment.cfm?mid=275
Google search 'A Case for Stability' By Samuel Crowthers (google books)

My point being, if all of these things were being made in well-known Philadelphia foundries in the period we speak of with established provenance, why not sword hilts? Perhaps they still just haven't come to light. After all, a few web searches reveil large cast andirons, intricate cabinet furnishings, large bells, and mention of weapon fixtures. The Paul Revere article talks about the brass fittings for the U.S.S. Constitution being made in 1797. I forgot a major point by Bazelon in his article. He had mentioned the large flux of foreign craftsmen coming into America at this time (pointing out a Scot that might have been making blades along with Rose and Prahl just as one example). If the supposed skill of working in brass was absent with the American craftsmen (an opinion I would challenge regardless of this sword), perhaps one of those craftsmen working in the Philly area was responsible, much like the Houndslow German craftsmen in Great Britain? Just another thought...

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Old 1st January 2011, 03:47 AM   #50
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Quote:
Perhaps they still just haven't come to light


Bingo I mention Prahl making/casting gun fittings in an earlier post but at the same time and in the period being discussed, no mention there of the cast hilts. Still, leaving the door open for the source of the seemingly holy grail. Also no exacting description of the revolution sword contract. No confirmation of the shop doing the casting for the cast doggie grip and pommel shown in Bazelon's editing of the Pennsylvania collection book with no revision of that book after the 1992 article which I am still eager to read and better agree with or rationalize in supposition.

Happy New Year

GC

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Old 1st January 2011, 05:13 AM   #51
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Now I see your point of caution. Not a denial, simply a waiting for more evidence. Makes perfect sense and still leaves room for exciting new developments in this area of study.

Happy New Year to all at the Forum!
Mark
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Old 8th February 2011, 07:44 AM   #52
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Default More on the brass hilts

In the newest Man-At -Arms magazine this month is an excellent article on the so-called Prahl eagle head swords with many of the same remarks and points brought up in our discussion. Specifically, the fact that many of these early eagle-head types had imported blades, but the jury is out on whether the hilts (one piece affairs of solid brass with 'ugly' eagle and 10 sided grips) were made in Philly or elsewhere. As these swords were made for the militias, the author of the article implies that most of these, IRON hilted included, were probably either individual or militia private purchase. Interesting that these Prahl-types had the same characteristics as our lion-hilt (solid brass one piece cast figural hilt, some crude and others more refined, private purchase, many with the 4 and 6 slot guards). Great article, by the way...
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Old 12th February 2011, 02:14 AM   #53
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Thanks for an update. The author of the article was whom, you might mention?

I don't subscribe, so I have to live vicariously with what any may care to share. This quarter's budget just ate up a back up machine and in finding another book to buy.

Cheers

GC
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Old 4th November 2019, 07:23 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M ELEY
Ahhh, research...it will be the death of us all (right, Jim McD?).

I see your point with the many hilt types coming out of Europe and admit that this sword could have completely been manufactured over-seas. As a matter of fact, the sword I traded to get this one had a solid brass lion-hilt finely formed with octogonal hilt. I have seen this hilt type ascribed to French patterns that were imported to America both during and after the Revolution. Mine was a Spanish colonial broadsword with German made blade, classic 6-sided balde with Spanish markings and motto. I will hang onto the fact, though, that so far, this pattern of private purchase has not been seen in any other European setting. So, motto or not ("American Light Horse"), I think these were made for the American market, specifically for cavalry officers. Until i see one in a Waterloo collection, that is. I seem to remember the article's author stating he didn't belive that either Rose or Prahl had made the hilt, but some 3rd party (Rose never worked in brass save for his later cavalry scabbards, which were poorly made vs his beautiful swords). Likewise, as you stated, Prahl's work appears more primitive. In any case, I appreciate the feedback. It keeps me on my toes-

I know what you mean when you mention the opinions and theories of other authors. Much head-scratching. I think as time goes by, some of those treaties fall by the wayside (In Stu Rankin's book on naval weapons, he at one time was convinced that early U.S. marine swords followed the Brit NCO pattern...an opinion seconded by none). Tuite's article on naval weapons (down-loadable-YES!) was excellent and presents a conundrum when he shows that one-off naval cutlass with iron cylindrical grip. An interesting piece resembling a cutlass I am researching. In any case, it's all good.




Great posts Mark as always!!!!
Ahhh………….research...…...remember, "more research to be done!" ???
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Old 6th November 2019, 03:39 AM   #55
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Default Hi Jim!

Hello Jim and good to hear from you. Wow, I had almost forgotten about this old post! Has it really been almost 10 years??! Getting old! Unfortunately, I don't have that sword anymore. It was a nice piece, but I traded it in for something more appropriately naval. Thanks for digging this one up and reminding me the importance, as you always say, in research! Talk to ya soon, Cap'n!
Mark
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