Did CS belt buckles exist

Robert E Lee 1

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My captain in my reenacting unit the 3rd Florida infantry claimed CS belt buckles are just modern tourist things but I've seen in books and paintings they had them does anyone know if they did indeed exist or not
 

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Lanyard Puller

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.... err... Your "Captain" is wrong.. Since you have a computer just search "CS belt buckles, photos" and be amazed at the variations of designs.
Yes some are real period buckles and some are repros or actual ACW made ones of them but real Confederate ones DO exist.

Here's one presently for sale, still on the leather belt. Yours for a cool $6000 +
E8BBDB6288754D16A6B52477C63587E2IMG.jpg
 

CPT JB

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I think the CS buckles were issued to the few regular Confederate Army regiments. The volunteer units often used the militia buckles and uniforms, and some used belt buckles with their state seal or other identification. Your Captain, is correct at least partially that at reenactment a the CS is to help audience distinguish since at reenactments Confederates are sometimes in blue as well. Many of the late war regiments did not have uniforms or belts. I think that was true in other states as well.
 

CPT JB

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Any truth that they would turn the US upside down as SN-Southern Nation? I know I have seen CS buckles in the book Arms and Equipment of the Confederate States, Echoes of glory. Echoes of Glory has a more rectangular CS that the were worn west of The Mississippi. Echoes of Glory mention the SN but not sure how common that was.
 

DixieRifles

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Good question. I'm sure there are no production records.
I wonder if the Florida "Captain" was simply saying that these buckles did not exist in the first year of the War? I'm sure it took time to crank up the production.
My question is what was the production of the CSA buckles during each year of the War? Did it stop after, say, mid-1864?
 

Robert E Lee 1

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.... err... Your "Captain" is wrong.. Since you have a computer just search "CS belt buckles, photos" and be amazed at the variations of designs.
Yes some are real period buckles and some are repros or actual ACW made ones of them but real Confederate ones DO exist.

Here's one presently for sale, still on the leather belt. Yours for a cool $6000 +
View attachment 316499
Wow thanks , I needed to know because I was gonna buy one for my uniform but wanted to be sure what he said was inaccurate
 

Robert E Lee 1

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...and the wearing of Union oval buckles upside down -- i.e. to read "sn" meaning "southern nation" -- I've always wondered if that's a reenactorism or is there any actual period evidence of it?
Hmmm good question I feel it's more of a reenactor thing but could have been a period thing
 

Robert E Lee 1

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Good question. I'm sure there are no production records.
I wonder if the Florida "Captain" was simply saying that these buckles did not exist in the first year of the War? I'm sure it took time to crank up the production.
My question is what was the production of the CSA buckles during each year of the War? Did it stop after, say, mid-1864?
Our economy was getting pretty jacked up later in the war so I'm guessing you just take what you could without things getting issued at that point like taking from fallen comrades
 

byron ed

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?? that link says that upside-down US buckle use was true*

(Of course an "SN" buckles -- upper case N -- cannot be derived by turning over a US buckle. Therefore did someone claim SN buckles were otherwise manufactured by the South? I agree with you, Nah to that).



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* to cite: "Verdict: TRUE The buckles were worn upside down by Rebel soldiers. It stands to reason that they would call them “Southern Nation” buckles, as the “US” looks like “sn” upside down, but I have no evidence to prove the Rebels referred to them as such. It is plausible that they were simply worn upside down as an insult to the US troops. In any case, I’ve dug enough flat buttons, militia buttons and US plates at rebel campsites to prove that the ill-equipped rebels wore US buckles often, and often wore them upside down."
 
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captaindrew

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Wow thanks , I needed to know because I was gonna buy one for my uniform but wanted to be sure what he said was inaccurate
He was probably just trying to steer you away from them. While CS buckles certainly existed they can be a bit over done in the hobby. More common were the simple frame buckle AKA the "Georgia Frame" or the simple iron roller buckle. If you search the forum we had a discussion on this topic not long ago. I just have my phone handy or I'd post a link for you.
 

piratehunter

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Any truth that they would turn the US upside down as SN-Southern Nation? I know I have seen CS buckles in the book Arms and Equipment of the Confederate States, Echoes of glory. Echoes of Glory has a more rectangular CS that the were worn west of The Mississippi. Echoes of Glory mention the SN but not sure how common that was.
Yes there is truth in it.
 

CPT JB

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Not manufactured but modified by moving the hook or by turning belt upside down and reversing the hook side. Not saying at all that they were manufactured in the South. Echoes of Glory states they often hammered and smashed the US to make it plain, sometimes melting and recasting the lead to change the hook. Sounds like it was more common of an occurrence than I thought. My impression it was more of a Reenactor thing. I stand corrected!
 

Frederick14Va

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CS waist belt plates. Yes they did exist in a number of different forms. However there are some that are indeed fantasy collector plates that are not based on anything that actually existed, that are out there and amoungst sulter offerings . One of the most common of these is the CS oval that is an identical copy of the issued US plate. Yes there were several CS oval plates existing but there are differences in the details. I would be inclined to inquire further which particular plate the unit in question is speaking of. Also consideration that some belt plates tend to reflect a given theater and time frame of the war. Just because something existed, doesnt mean everyone anywhere at any time likely had access to one.
 

Frederick14Va

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US Plates worn inverted... SN - Southern Nation
Mostly a myth legend that lacks provenance. I recall the whole affair started with a particular portrait image of a Tenn soldier wearing his that manner. Speculations and theories over time evolved into some people assuming it as fact..

We also find Federal troops wearing theirs inverted in the same fashion. Part of this is contributed to the photographic processes at the time that reversed the image. We can see both officers and soldiers intentionally flipping over their leather gear obviously on purpose so that the gear appears to rest on the correct side after the image is taken.. Many times thereof the waist belt plate is inverted. These commonly are particular to studio portrait images, however on another token we also can find the same habit showing up in group camp scenes as well. More of a image reversed issue, and/or personal preference to just simply hook it the other direction than evidence of a subliminal political statement.
rev-67668307_10100177245692007_55263541766127616_n.jpg

rev-23131729.jpg

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