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    Description

    Exceptional, Classic Confederate Cap Worn by a North Carolinian Killed in Action. This exceedingly rare chasseur pattern cap belonged to Private J. Austin Craven, a 29-year-old farmer who served in Company G, 46th North Carolina Volunteer Infantry. The Randolph County native enlisted in April, 1862 and was killed during the Battle of Cold Harbor in June, 1864. While showing signs of genuine period use, the condition of the cap is remarkable. The deep gray wool body is just about perfect and rises almost four inches in front and five in the rear, with a five inch wide crown. The moderately thick, 1.5 inch wide tarred visor is firmly connected to the body. On the front is secured a .75 inch tall brass scroll letter "G," having a pleasant patina. On the side are somewhat crude eagle "I" buttons that seem to have a high copper content. Both are original to the piece and still hold small remnants of the original, thin tarred canvas chin strap. The fine purple cotton interior lining is intact but faded, showing a minimal number of negligible tears and stains. Likewise, the 1.5 inch wide sweatband is complete and about 75 percent attached. Under the sweatband is inked what appears to be the name and regiment of the owner, although now difficult to read. Inside the crown is a wonderful paper label that reads: "T. Wells/St. Andrews Hill near the Hall Plain" around which, in an oval, is "Cloth Hat, Military and Traveling Hat Maker." As expected, the label of this British hatter is badly chipped around the edges but some additional lettering and the possible date "1862" can be seen. An old tag dating circa 1950-70 is appended to the cap with the words "Confederate/Kepi "G" Co. 146 Inf./I.D. to J.A.Craven/KIA Manuf Wells" in ballpoint, the notation about the regiment being incorrect (but Craven is correctly listed in the 46th NCST in the CW database). Craven's excellent cap represents one of the finest examples of Confederate headgear to be offered in years and would be an outstanding addition to any advanced collection. In view of the great rarity and number of spurious examples that surface, this cap was sent C, Paul Loane, probably the leading authority on Civil War headgear in the country, who both authenticated and described it for the catalog.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2011
    12th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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