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When a CS Swords Moves From The Dog River to ID'd Column.

Discussion in 'Civil War Weapons and Ammunition' started by ucvrelics.com, Jan 8, 2017.

  1. ucvrelics.com

    ucvrelics.com 2nd Lieutenant Forum Host

    May 7, 2016

    All CW Union swords are very well marked. Makers marks, Inspectors Marks, State Marks etc. But Confederate swords are a whole different ball of wax. Most of the CS swords that are marked such as the Nashville Plow Works, Boyle & Gamble, Cook Brother etc are well know. Most others fall into that black hole of "Dog River" or "Cornpone" There were many small foundries and Blacksmith shops that made swords, d-guards and other items for the Confederacy and were never marked. When Bill Albaugh wrote both his CS Sword books this sword was not included. Even Howard Crouch's book also fails to Id this one.

    Over the years swords would come out of the woodwork with markings that would help Id other swords. Here is one that falls into that category. I bought this one over 35 years ago (for almost nothing) as a Dog River and knew it was CS with the unstopped fuller, crude castings etc. A few years ago a sword came out of an attic with the same features, mushroom pommel cap, big bulge in the grip, same crude casting channels and distinctive blade. The only difference in this one and mine was it was marked on the blade. B Douglas Columbia SC and now mine is not a Dog River anymore.

    This is the one found in the attic and marked.
    Image20.jpg Image21.jpg
    And here is my B Douglas formerly know as a "Dog River"


    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2017
    Yankeedave, redbob, James N. and 9 others like this.

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  3. kevikens

    kevikens 2nd Lieutenant

    Jun 7, 2013
    New Jersey
    I am not sure that I agree that all Union issued Civil War swords were well marked. I have seen a number of original swords such as the Model 1840 heavy cavalry saber, the wrist breaker, that had been manufactured abroad that were inscribed with very little other than, say a Solingen stamp, so that the purchasers could add what they would like if they so chose. While the addition of other marking may make the swords more interesting, their lack may not mean very much more than their owners had neither the time or inclination to add anything. Of course one could say that the imported 1840's that are little marked may not have been used in our war and I certainly agree that having these other markings helps to narrow down their use and if did have one with all those additional marks that could be attributed to a Confederate source I would be delighted to have one like the one you picture.
    Yankeedave and James N. like this.
  4. hawknknife

    hawknknife Private

    Oct 29, 2015
    Brandon, MS
    I purchased the first marked B. Douglas sword in Jackson, Ms in 1977, it is pictured in Albaugh's Confederate Swords with Addendum. It was being used to hold up a window in a deserted house.
  5. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Feb 23, 2013
    East Texas
    Package4 likes this.
  6. Jordan M.E. Williams

    Jordan M.E. Williams Private

    Sep 27, 2016
    That is a very interesting and crude sword, is there any evidence of a service edge or very fine nicks in the edge of the blade?
    Yankeedave likes this.

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