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    VERY RARE 28TH MISSISSIPPI CAVALRY INSCRIBED THOMAS GRISWOLD & CO. LIGHT CAVALRY OFFICER'S SABER AND BRASS SCABBARD. Generically one of the rarest of all Confederate swords with only two specimens extant. Inscribed in script horizontally on the face of the top brass scabbard mount "Lieut. Croome Bellamy". Bellamy served with the 28th Mississippi Cavalry (all Mississippi regiments were numbered together). Interestingly the other known example of this sword is inscribed at exactly the same point. The firm of Thomas Griswold & Co. represented a continuation of Hyde & Goodrich, who were military outfitters in New Orleans prior to the war. Griswold began operation in August 1861 and, in the brief period before the fall of New Orleans in March 1862, was a prolific producer of all types of edged weapons. Uniquely, among Confederate manufacturers, the quality of his work is comparable to the most sophisticated edged weapons produced in the north. Additionally, their products are generally well marked, leaving no question as to their point of origin. This sword truly has few peers in the halls of Confederate sword collecting. The brass hilt exhibits well executed cast floral and leaf decoration at the base of the outward branches of the guard and where the knuckle bow enters the pommel. The pommel cap also incorporates leaf decoration and is cast in two pieces with the seam clearly visible. The grip is pigskin and is wrapped with braided silver wire. The 32 ½" curved blade is breath taking. It is etched for ¾ of its length with a frosted background. The obverse displays scroll and geometric motifs at the base with exquisitely executed vines, flowers, leaves and acorns covering the balance. The reverse has crossed cannons surmounting stacked cannon balls at the bottom above which is a 1st National Confederate flag on a staff with a spear tip. The balance of the blade is covered with vine like scroll, acorn and leaf motifs with an old English "CS" in a riband in the center. Really one of the finest etched blades we've encountered on a Confederate sword. The fuller terminates in a slightly rounded ricasso with a penknife edge. The blade is deeply marked on the reverse side ricasso "T. G. & Co. N. O.", obviously executed with a single die stamp. The brass mounts on the heavy brass scabbard are finished with scalloped edges. The brass ring mounts, drag and heavy throat are of a noticeably different color, obviously of a lower copper content, than the scabbard and mounts, which produces a distinctive decorative effect. As with the sword itself the fit and finish are exceptional. The 28th Mississippi Cavalry was mustered into service in early 1862, seeing its first action in May of 1862 during the Federal naval attack on Vicksburg, including the Chickasaw bayou campaign. They were also in action at Thompson's Station and the subsequent attack on Franklin where they suffered heavy losses. The regiment was engaged in numerous vicious small unit actions against Federal cavalry in Georgia and Mississippi throughout 1863 and 1864, finally moving into Tennessee and being heavily fought at the conflagration that was the Battle of Franklin. The regiment suffered losses throughout this period and was finally surrendered in Alabama with their last muster rolls made out for April 31, 1865.

    This is, without question, amongst the rarest and most desirable of all Confederate manufactured swords, with a superb history to a regiment that embodied the spirit of gallantry in defense of the 'Lost Cause'.

    CONDITION: Absolutely superb and completely untouched. All brass with great dark patina. The grip just shows some honest wear on the high points, original silver wire wrap perfect. Scabbard perfect with no dents. The blade is truly remarkable for a Confederate sword, retaining 95% of the original bright mint luster. The sword overall is truly exceptional.

    Provenance: The Tharpe Collection of American Military History

    Exhibited: The Liberty Heritage Society Museum

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2007
    1st Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 8,088

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

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