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  • Civil War Navy POW Carved Powder Horn ID'd Paymaster George W. Simmons USS Clifton Sabine Pass Texas

    Our Price: $ 3,500 

    Civil War Navy POW Carved Powder Horn ID'd Paymaster George W. Simmons USS Clifton Sabine Pass Texas.

    Near dawn, on the morning of September 8, 1863, a Union flotilla crept up river with the purpose of invading and occupying Texas. Prior to the Battle of Sabine Pass, there was little action for the Confederate forces. Some of the officers occupying the area were sent there as punishment. To combat boredom, soldiers practiced firing rounds at range markers placed in the river. Their adept shooting served them well and thwarted the four Union gunboats and seven troop transports. Their victory resulted in the capture of 300 Union prisoners and two gunboats. One of the gunboats captured was the USS Clifton which is depicted in detail on this horn.

    George W. Simmons is listed in a number publications related to the Harvard Class of 1861. One was published in July 20, 1864 where he is noted as being prisoner in Texas with 'Hopes soon to be exchanged. Another, called 'the fifth report' with sketches of Harvard Graduates, class of 1861, published in 1892. George Washington Simmons Jr, of Boston, was born July 4, 1839. Completing his studes in Europe and the Holy Land.  June 10, 1863 he sailed on USS Clifton as acting assistant paymaster and was taken prisoner September 8, 1863, with most of the Clifton's officers and crew, at the Battle of Sabine Pass. He was sent to Houston, Texas, and afterward to Shreveport, La, where he escaped, only to be recaptured within 75 miles of the Union lines. He was taken back to Shreveport, then back to Camp Ford, Tyler, Texas. His service is also listed in 'The Harvard Graduates Magazine' of September, 1911. 'taken prisoner and confined till March, 1865; exchanged; resigned, June 14, 1865.'

    After Simmons was exchanged one of his drawings of the interior of Camp Ford, Tyler, Texas was made into a woodcut and published in the March 4, 1865 issue of 'Harper's Weekly'. Simmons must have had some artistic ablility and it is quite likely that Simmons carved his own horn.

    After the Civil War, in 1874 he and his father established G.W. Simmons & Son at Oak Hall in Boston. After Simmons Sr. death the business continued. G.W. Simmons & Co. advertisement appears in 'The United States Army and Navy Journal and Gazette of the United States', March 14th, 1896 describes the business as "Manufacturers of Uniforms and Equipment for Army, Navy, Revenue Marine Service, National Guard, Military Colleges, Band and Drum Corps." Indeed his business was among the more prolific military outfitters of the late 19th century. On Feb. 22, 1898 Simmons died of gun shot wounds to the chest in Nahant, Ma. and was buried in Forest Hill.

    His powder horn is very large, nicely curved size, overall approx. 22 in. Finely curved wooden face with fancy acorn carved motif at its top. Very nicely and specially carved wide octagon spout, with original fancily carved removable wooden plug that is still affixed to the horn with original narrow iron chain.

    The carving style is typical of other examples made at Camp Ford, Tyler, Texas. The center of the powder horn features three very large lines in quite fancy, upper and lowercase, block lettering, G.W.S. JR. / Sept. 8th, 1863 / Sabine Pass, and below the Sabine Pass marking, an open branch and leaf with floral motif. Lower section of horn features a very large, rather crude (but original) illustration of an American naval vessel that is identical to period illustrations of the USS Clifton (side paddlewheel steamer type) with a long flowing narrow American flag flying at top of the rear mast and a larger American flag flying on pole at extreme stern, with a cannon barrel just behind it and another cannon facing forward at its extreme bow.

    Provenance: Estate of Norm Flayderman

    Condition:

    Light surface wear, few scratches. 

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  • Rare and Unusual Confederate Cavalry Saber

    Our Price: $7500

    This Rare and Unusual Confederate Cavalry Saber is thought by some authorities to be a Tennessee or Texas made sword. At any rate this pattern is rarely encountered and this is a fine, complete, virtually untouched example.

    The form of the hilt is the most unusual and visually striking feature of this sword. It has long, sweeping lines. The pommel is upswept at the rear instead of downward like most other American swords. Also note the unusual form of the quillon and the overall thinness of the crossguard. Metal scabbard is typical of other Confederate swords having copper/brass mounting rings and throat. The most unusual feature of the scabbard is the very large blade of the drag. The blade is consistent in construction to other known examples, having an unusual very rudimentary stopped fuller.

    Condition of this sword is attic mint. Hilt has no bends or repairs. Leather wrap and single strand copper wire are 100% original and complete. 1/2 of original leather washer is present and there is no play. Scabbard is virtually dent free. The ring of the upper mount is an iron replacement from its time of use. 33 inch blade with old sharpening marks and patina staining.

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  • Rare Early Leech & Rigdon Revolver Found in Georgia

    Our Price: sold

    RARE LEECH & RIGDON, EARLIEST STYLE MADE IN GREENSBORO GEORGIA AND HIGHEST SERIAL NUMBER “457” KNOWN OF THE PRE-CONFEDERATE CONTRACT REVOLVERS,  FROM GEORGIA FAMILY ESTATE.

    Serial Number 457. Caliber 36. This particular gun is the highest known serial number with the large “LEECH & RIGDON” barrel markings without “CSA” (“CSA” marked guns appear in the 494-1500 range). There are only 6 guns currently known in this early variant genre,(377, 399, 422, 439, 450 and 457). This gun has been retained in family since early 20th century. Found in Georgia, the former owner states his Uncle (father’s brother) traded for the gun in Wilkes County Georgia, about 1920. Wilkes County is adjacent to Greensboro, Georgia and this Confederate revolver apparently stayed in that area for many years. The name “BOWDEN” is nicely applied on backstrap, most likely representing the soldier who carried the gun. A quick check of the Confederate soldier database indicates the likely owner, a sergeant from Banks County, which is only 50 miles from the manufacturer. George Bowden enlisted in 1862 in the 34th Georgia Infantry, was badly wounded at Bakers Creek, Mississippi and was mustered out late in 1864 in Augusta Georgia.

    This is an honest, original and complete example. Matching serial number’s are found on barrel, loading arm, latch, arbor, frame, trigger guard, backstrap, cylinder and stamped on bottom of grips, which is a scarce feature only occurring on a few early guns. The wedge has no serial number but appears to be the correct spring type and appears original with matching condition and patina. The “LEECH & RIGDON” barrel markings are the best and clearest noted on any guns in this serial range. Later in “CSA” production, barrel markings are less discernible even on highest condition guns. This indicates that the die deteriorated with use and was not changed.

    Condition of this revolver is good to very good overall. Metal is overall dark with old cleaning, staining and pitting. Serial numbers are all discernible. Early gunsmithing efforts to tighten arbor evident. Gun has traces of case colors and blue in well at bottom of barrel showing this gun was put up in fairly nice condition and has had storage issues over the years. Grips are well fit, retaining thin traces of original varnish and easily discerned stamped serial number on left butt; there are 2 small chips on either inside toe. Cylinder has numerous dings and gashes and safety pins are smashed from dry firing. Mechanically gun functions intermittently. Cock holds well in both positions. Bore is crisp with well-discerned rifling. Original brass cone front sight shows minor wear as does the right edge of muzzle from holster wear. Accompanying holster is sound and displays gun well with much crazing, small reductions and old repairs to sewing where it has come loose, based on extra sewing lines on holster, the holster appears to be made of re-used military leather, possibly Confederate made as it emulates US made military flap holsters.

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