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Thread: A truly unusual Starr

  1. #1
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    A truly unusual Starr

    Flat blade similar to m1813
    Total 38 inches
    Blade 33 13/16 inches
    Wide 1 3/8 inches
    Thick 11/32 inches
    POB 7 7/8 inches from hilt
    10 foot diameter blade
    When I first saw photos I thought this was perhaps an Arnold and Cooley. No makers marks, no proof , no verification marks and no inspector marks and It just did not look quite right. After removing hilt it is clearly a Starr as it has a typical Starr mark on tang and the typical 12-20 threads on tang with standard Starr spanner nut. Most likely post 1813 production because of grip style, stiched leather wrap and sharp crease of scabbard. M1812 CW stamped swords are about a 14 foot diameter blade and a POB of 9 1/8 from hilt. The standard m1812 small HHP canted hilt 10.5 ft diameter blade and 7 7/8 inch POB from hilt with the m1813 the same. This sword is almost a full 1/16 th thicker than any of the m1812 or 13s and has the smaller diameter blade. Unless it was a sample or is post 1817 production. I cannot see Starr making militia sabres if he could not fulfill his government contracts. Then again? Does anyone have or seen similar? Or any ideas or insight? Thanks Eric
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    The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." --- Tench Coxe

  2. #2
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    No one even with a guess? I am stumped on this beauty. It is well made and built for business. Eric
    The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." --- Tench Coxe

  3. #3
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    Another truly unusual Starr

    Here is a previous thread that this sword was reviewed on.
    http://www.swordforum.com/forums/sho...t=morgan+starr

    Possible m1828 N. Starr NCO. Col. G. Bomford ordered 15 to 25 in 1828 for review. This is possibly one of those but could be any number (unknown) Starr may have sent to States as examples trying to sell swords.
    M1828 NCO? M1818NCO
    Total 31" 30 3/4
    Blade. 25 7/8. 25 5/8 to 25 3/4
    Wide. 1 1/8. 1 3/16 to 1 1/4
    Fuller. 16 3/8. 19 3/8
    Thick 1/8. 3/16 to 1/4
    False edge. 10. 7
    Counter guard. 1 1/8. 1 1/16
    Stirrup guard on both swords is 1 5/16 in front but on pommel end 1828? Is 1/2 inch less. 1 1/2 verses 2 inches on m1818NCO
    Leather is not stiched as on most Starrs after 1813 but rather uses steel wire wrap to secure leather. I at first thought this an add on but it appears original to sword as evident in grooves in leather and lack of stitching. Blade seems unfinished and is unsharpened. No Starr or inspection stamps. Blade, backstrap and grip marked with Roman numeral 6 (VI). Sorry as I know Starr's are somewhat mundane and slightly boring to most but any help or comments will be appreciated. Captain Butler I cannot thank you enough for giving me the opportunity to worry and fret over this beautiful sword. Regards Eric
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    Last edited by Eric Fairbanks; 03-25-2016 at 03:48 PM. Reason: pictures did not load
    The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." --- Tench Coxe

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    Unusual Starr hilt

    The wedge shape of the grip is worthy of note and shows a trend that became popular in the beginning of the next century. Eric
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    The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." --- Tench Coxe

  5. #5
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    Starr Militia saber

    Another unusual Starr. Grip similar to later m1813 with thicker wedge toward pommel, however; blade is earlier straighter style reminiscent of early CW m1812 with fourteen foot diameter blade. Unusual wire wrap that appears original to sword. Possibly a repaired sword, a composite of older and newer parts refitted for later war. No makers mark but distinctly a Starr product.
    The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." --- Tench Coxe

  6. #6
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    Good stuff Eric. I can't believe I have missed this thread in the past. FWIW, the first sword in the thread strikes as off a bit due to the rounded edges of the guard (unless I am just seeing it odd). The wired grips certainly unusual as well.

    I am a bit up in the air with a lot of resources just now as I packed the library yesterday. There was another CT maker doing Starr contract swords and the name escapes me.

    The "Morgan" nco still has me wondering and the single strand wire makes me wonder even more. The transitional 1813s with later features maybe just that.

    Cheers

    Hotspur; juggling life and livelihood hoping for a dimensional equilibrium

  7. #7
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    Thanks Glen, the rounded edges or more correct I would say the complete clean-up of all hilt furniture including grip is noticeable while the NCO seems unfinished. The other key feature is the extra curve of the blade which is a 10 foot diameter instead of standard 10.5 diameter. I believe you are thinking of Arnold and Cooley of which there is one example and a few advertisements from early Civil War era. It is possible on this last sword I posted as they did follow Starr's pattern however the first sword in thread has a Starr "S" on its tang common to many Starr swords. I will study it more fully once I return home. The wire wrap is the question I know little it about. It does appear to my untrained eyes to be period and both swords have very close to same size if not exact. I do have a few more of these off the wall Starrs and will post them when I return. The one thing I love about Starr swords is if they are marked or not they are easy to spot. I purchased an m1813 this year that the blade was straightened a very interesting and odd animal . Eric
    The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." --- Tench Coxe

  8. #8
    My late friend Andy Mowbray had several completely unmarked Starrs, one of which I dismantled and found various worker's identification marks identical to those found on accepted sabers. The workers were paid piece rates, thus it was important to know exactly how many pieces each worker supplied. There is a great deal more to the story than Hicks knew, not the least of which is that the government was extremely slow in inspecting and paying for contract arms. As a result, many contractors, including Starr, sold finished arms in the private sector simply to keep the doors open. Others may have failed inspection and it probably isn't a coincidence that one of our unmarked examples has the blade broken.

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