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Lot 758    

M1850 Ames Field & Staff Presentation Sword to Capt. Henry B. Banning
4/30/2014 - Firearms and Militaria: Live Salesroom Auction
30.5" blade. Shagreen and brass wire wrapped handle. Gold gilt brass guard. Browned metal scabbard with Ames markings on brass fitting, gold gilt brass fittings. Blade with typical etched military motifs. Ames Mfg. Company etched into the ricasso with military sub-inspector's mark and 1862 date. A crudely executed inscription on the top brass scabbard mount reads, Presented to Henry B. Banning, For Gallantry and Courage/4th Ohio Infantry, 5 June 1861.

While the sword dated after-the-fact is authentic, the "5 June,1861" inscription is not easily explained in the context of Banning's actual service. Put simply, the 4th Ohio had not engaged in any battles until July 12, 1861 when the regiment occupied Beverly, West Virginia. While Banning would emerge as a brave and heroic officer, his exploits were still before him in June 1861. The presentation is inconsistent with the known historical timeline; otherwise we are to believe that whoever inscribed the 1862-dated sword got the date wrong.


Condition:  
Handle is excellent, guard still retains a lot of the gilt. Blade has been lightly cleaned, but still has an excellent look. Scabbard still retaining most of the brown finish. Brass fittings have tarnished with some dents in the drag.
Sold: $1,292.50
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