Possible fake Tiffany & Co sword

Wraith_3

Private
Joined
Mar 24, 2021
First, thanks for all the help with identifying some of the stuff I don't have my dad's notes on, I really appreciate it! I don't have any info on this sword, but from the very little I know on ID'ing fakes, I know one is the rings. The rings are the first thing that stuck out because they have a sloppy weld, they aren't seamless like most of the real swords I've seen. Then when I started taking pictures I noticed a lot of flash inside the metal guard. Now I know Tiffany has always been known for quality so I would imagine even in war time they would take a little time to file the flash off the detail of the guard. You can see little bubbles of excess metal inside the guard detail in the following pics. Maybe I'm wrong, but that doesn't seem right to me. My dad didn't have any notes on this sword, so I would also like to know the make even if it is fake so I'll know what it's supposed to be.

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Joined
Nov 15, 2019
First, thanks for all the help with identifying some of the stuff I don't have my dad's notes on, I really appreciate it! I don't have any info on this sword, but from the very little I know on ID'ing fakes, I know one is the rings. The rings are the first thing that stuck out because they have a sloppy weld, they aren't seamless like most of the real swords I've seen. Then when I started taking pictures I noticed a lot of flash inside the metal guard. Now I know Tiffany has always been known for quality so I would imagine even in war time they would take a little time to file the flash off the detail of the guard. You can see little bubbles of excess metal inside the guard detail in the following pics. Maybe I'm wrong, but that doesn't seem right to me. My dad didn't have any notes on this sword, so I would also like to know the make even if it is fake so I'll know what it's supposed to be.

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Unfortunately 100% bad. Tiffany marks are all wrong as is the date stamp. Etching is typical of what is done in India and Pakistan and nowhere near the quality of any period American or European blade manufacturer.
 

bayonet

Corporal
Joined
Nov 7, 2012
Oh yeah that's a Repo. Some dealers in CW weapons have a Fake page on their websites like AZSwords and Relicman. They show those fake Tiffany stampings. I'd show you the real Tiffany address on my 1840 Cavalry and 1850 Foot but I'd have to get up on a chair, take them off the wall after moving others swords, and then photograph them, then put them back up. Too much work this morning. Just know that your sword above is Fake! Sorry :smile coffee:
 

Wraith_3

Private
Joined
Mar 24, 2021
Thanks for confirming. It's a BAD fake/repro if even someone with general knowledge of the swords could figure it out. He had this one for a long time so I'm guessing he got it before he really knew what he was doing. Oh well it will make a decent wall hanger I guess.
 

bayonet

Corporal
Joined
Nov 7, 2012
Thanks for confirming. It's a BAD fake/repro if even someone with general knowledge of the swords could figure it out. He had this one for a long time so I'm guessing he got it before he really knew what he was doing. Oh well it will make a decent wall hanger I guess.
or just sell it to a CW Reenactor or to preserve the sanctity and honor of collecting just take a sledgehammer to it then throw it in a dumpster. :smile coffee: Sort of like when Manufacturers of high end Designer goods send the Courts/Law after Counterfeiters of their products. Seizing them and then destroying them.
 

R. Porter

Private
Joined
Oct 6, 2020
If you smash it and toss it in a dumpster, some enterprising picker from Texas will show up the day before the trash men come and grab it and anything else that looks interesting and take it back home with him. In a week it will be in a pawn shop or up for sale on eBay as a Civil War sword with battle damage which they will say makes it authentic and raises the reserve price. They might know that it's a reproduction or they might not, but they will list it as genuine. If you sell it on eBay you will list it as a reproduction. If it sells, the buyer will know what he is getting and be satisfied with the transaction. If it doesn't sell, you can hang it over the fireplace as decor. It looks much nicer than those swords from India that used to be sold at Pier 1 back in the 1970's for $10.00 and show up on eBay today with starting bids of $70.00 to $120.00 as pre-Civil War British cavalry swords. And, you can take this one out in the yard and use it as a machete without feeling guilty about damaging are real $400.00 to $1,500.00 sword. While that may be loads of fun, you are probably not getting the experience you would have with a real sword that would probably handle much better than this one which will most likely feel like a blunt steel bar with a handle. If you ever decide to collect swords, it may be helpful to have a few reproductions around to help remind you what to look for. While photographs and message board postings can be very helpful (and I can't stress this enough), having a real or reproduction sword you can pick up and handle will communicate things that you can't get from books and postings alone. (I'm not really exaggerating about the pickers either. They used to drive through neighborhoods in Columbus, OH, snatching things before the trash collectors could 20 years ago. While I applaud recycling and re-purposing there are some cases where this must be done carefully or you create more havoc and trouble than you should. Two of these cases are recycling reproduction antiques and collectibles and reanimation of humans as practiced by Dr. Frankenstein.)
 

Patrick H

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Mar 7, 2014
If you smash it and toss it in a dumpster, some enterprising picker from Texas will show up the day before the trash men come and grab it and anything else that looks interesting and take it back home with him. In a week it will be in a pawn shop or up for sale on eBay as a Civil War sword with battle damage which they will say makes it authentic and raises the reserve price. They might know that it's a reproduction or they might not, but they will list it as genuine. If you sell it on eBay you will list it as a reproduction. If it sells, the buyer will know what he is getting and be satisfied with the transaction. If it doesn't sell, you can hang it over the fireplace as decor. It looks much nicer than those swords from India that used to be sold at Pier 1 back in the 1970's for $10.00 and show up on eBay today with starting bids of $70.00 to $120.00 as pre-Civil War British cavalry swords. And, you can take this one out in the yard and use it as a machete without feeling guilty about damaging are real $400.00 to $1,500.00 sword. While that may be loads of fun, you are probably not getting the experience you would have with a real sword that would probably handle much better than this one which will most likely feel like a blunt steel bar with a handle. If you ever decide to collect swords, it may be helpful to have a few reproductions around to help remind you what to look for. While photographs and message board postings can be very helpful (and I can't stress this enough), having a real or reproduction sword you can pick up and handle will communicate things that you can't get from books and postings alone. (I'm not really exaggerating about the pickers either. They used to drive through neighborhoods in Columbus, OH, snatching things before the trash collectors could 20 years ago. While I applaud recycling and re-purposing there are some cases where this must be done carefully or you create more havoc and trouble than you should. Two of these cases are recycling reproduction antiques and collectibles and reanimation of humans as practiced by Dr. Frankenstein.)
Thank you for posting advice that is useful to all potential collectors, and thank you for not talking down to our friend @Wraith_3.
 

bayonet

Corporal
Joined
Nov 7, 2012
To @Wraith_3 I would like to add: Your sword might be a reproduction, but it's also a memento of your father. If it were mine and had belonged to my father, I'd be proud to have it regardless of its status as a reproduction.
Oh yeah like my Father that had a French Charleville Rev War musket displayed for years. Either he made up a story about it or the one that sold it to him made up a story about it. Either way when I inherited it the research showed it a Model 1777 made around 1811 due to the markings. It was a popular musket model that lasted for years. So I sold it and used the money to buy my first Colt 1860 Army. Then many years later I did buy a 100% original Rev War Charleville in memory of my Father who didn't know squat about antique weapons but was a Rev War history buff. Nobody is taking down to this young fellow, his Father probably thought it was real too. BUT now you know that it is 100% Fake. So sell it and buy an original 1850 Foot Sword which can be had if your lucky at auctions for $250-300 without a scabbard of course. Or keep it and drive around on a dirt bike slashing watermelons in two on top of poles with it if you want. Whatever floats your boat as they say. I had a co-worker that displayed all reproductions on his wall, me I display all originals on my wall. To each's own.
 

R. Porter

Private
Joined
Oct 6, 2020
Oh yeah like my Father that had a French Charleville Rev War musket displayed for years. Either he made up a story about it or the one that sold it to him made up a story about it. Either way when I inherited it the research showed it a Model 1777 made around 1811 due to the markings. It was a popular musket model that lasted for years. So I sold it and used the money to buy my first Colt 1860 Army. Then many years later I did buy a 100% original Rev War Charleville in memory of my Father who didn't know squat about antique weapons but was a Rev War history buff. Nobody is taking down to this young fellow, his Father probably thought it was real too. BUT now you know that it is 100% Fake. So sell it and buy an original 1850 Foot Sword which can be had if your lucky at auctions for $250-300 without a scabbard of course. Or keep it and drive around on a dirt bike slashing watermelons in two on top of poles with it if you want. Whatever floats your boat as they say. I had a co-worker that displayed all reproductions on his wall, me I display all originals on my wall. To each's own.
I encounter the same story problems when considering family lore while researching genealogy. There are stories that your relatives claim as the honest truth but don't match the history and documentation you gather doing research. Sometimes it turns out that when you dig deep enough the stories are true but you can't know that until you do the deep research necessary; and then it turns out that the stories can't be different or they would not be true. Sometimes you just can't come to a decision on its veracity. Then sometimes the stories are just plain wrong. This last case often goes hand-in-hand with relatives who won't accept any other version as correct and tell you that you have the wrong person and you need to go back and look again even though those ancestors who were officers in the Confederate army would have been 4 or 5 years old at the time if your relatives' version were true.

And then there are those stories that come out of a library book you borrowed because it has lots of photos of early Richmond and its surroundings. And you read about a grisly murder that took place in the early 1900's on a road that you traveled to school on for three years and many, many times on the way to and from work or to go to the mall. And the murder happened just as newspapers were learning how to include photographs so that it showed up in newspapers from the west coast to the east coast and even in Europe. And suddenly the names of a number of people in the story start sounding very familiar so you check Ancestry.com and Find A Grave and you discover that the victim was your grandmother's first cousin and that everyone lived on the same street growing up (including the murderer) and no one ever breathed a word of this when you were growing up And it probably had a major effect on how your mother was raised, but she probably never knew anything about it.

To drag that back to the current topic, researching a sword is half the fun of having it. As you start to find out about the sword, what it was for, when it was made and so forth; you may stumble across some interesting history. I won a U.S. naval officer's sword on eBay. It was very damaged but based on its characteristics it was not likely to have been damaged in a conflict. There was a name on the blade and it seemed as if this was a retirement gift given to an old admiral who retired around 1911. As it turned out, this was not just any old admiral; it was one that started his military career during the Civil War. His first tour of duty was as a private in Berdan's Sharp Shooters. If your sword turns out to be a reproduction you have still learned something and you are farther along the road to a better understanding of history.
 

Wraith_3

Private
Joined
Mar 24, 2021
Oh I definitely have learned more from getting stuff ready to sell than I did even trailing along to CW shows. I was always more interested in WW2 because both grandfathers served, and I was a kid so I didn't pay a whole lot of attention beyond "Cool gun or cool sword!" lol Also now that you mentioned the Berdan Sharpshooters, my dad had a really cool photo of a Berdan Sharpshooter with a Sharps rifle, which I'll post below. I went looking for it after he passed and I found out he must have sold it because it was not with his photo collection. I found an email he printed out where years ago someone offered him $1600 for it and he declined so I guess someone made him a good offer because it's gone!

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