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Thread: Anyone know of a scabbard for the M1902?

  1. #1

    Anyone know of a scabbard for the M1902?

    I have recently purchased a M1902 US Army dress officers saber. I need a scabbard for it. Any ideas of how I might find one?

    Also, what does the Star of David with the word "proved" signify? Does that indicate a british made blade? Thanks in advance.

    Eric

  2. #2
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    It might be tough finding a scabbard, since different manufacturers gave different curves to their blades. I have a couple of "extras" that were with swords I bought that were *not* original to the swords and did not fit well. One had even rubbed the nickel off of the blade in a couple of places from being pulled out and forced in repeatedly.

    Unless your sword is a Horstmann piece, it's probably not a Magen David, just a six-pointed star. The "proved" used to mean the sword had passed a rigorous testing regimen, but by the time the M1902 came along had just become a traditional sign of "quality", with no testing having actually been done.

    Blades with the star and "proved" brass slug were made in Germany and the US, I've never seen a Wilkinson blade with one but that doesn't mean they don't exist; I've seen later swords with the "proved" merely etched on the blade that were made by Wilkinson, but also by German firms, US makers, Spain, Taiwan and India.

    Pics, or at least an exact description of the sword and markings, would help narrow the ID down.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Scott View Post
    Blades with the star and "proved" brass slug were made in Germany and the US, I've never seen a Wilkinson blade with one but that doesn't mean they don't exist; I've seen later swords with the "proved" merely etched on the blade that were made by Wilkinson, but also by German firms, US makers, Spain, Taiwan and India.
    Many British made swords from the mid 1850's onward bore the star of David and Proved, which in fact was originated by Wilkinson and copied by countless other manufacturers.

    Rob
    Vir prudens non contra ventum mingit

  4. #4

    M1902 US Army dress officers sword

    Mr. Scott,

    If you go to e-bay and look at item # 280134186419, it should show you the sword I have. It has a bone handle which I think would make it an earlier model but I am not an expert. Take a look at the pic on e-bay and let me know what you think.

    Thanks,

    Eric

  5. #5
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    Hi Eric, here is a direct link to the picture album

    http://s193.photobucket.com/albums/z...ds1/1902%20us/
    “Do you know what astonished me most in the world? The inability of force to create anything. In the long run, the sword is always beaten by the spirit.” Napoleon Bonaparte

  6. #6

    Looking for info....

    Hey Dom, what a small world, but then I guess it would make sense to see you here

    I thought I would join this forum for 2 reasons:

    1) To get as much info as I can about the sword you were kind enough to sell me, and

    2) To try to find a scabbard

    Be Well,

    Eric

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob O'Reilly View Post
    Many British made swords from the mid 1850's onward bore the star of David and Proved, which in fact was originated by Wilkinson and copied by countless other manufacturers.

    Rob
    I was speaking specifically to the M1902s. The only true Magen Davids I've seen on them have been on blades from Horstmann. All others I can recall seeing simply have a 6-pointed star, like the first two pics below. The third pic is of a Magen David on a Horstmann M1902.
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    Last edited by Sean Scott; 10-14-2007 at 09:18 AM.

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    Eric:

    I'm on a dialup server in a third-world hole, and it blocks addresses that start with numbers, for some reason. Basically, I can't see the pics, though I do think I remember the sword in that auction.

    Henry V. Allen was an old cutlery and gunsmithing firm that was active from 1812, but I don't know when they stopped operation. If your blade was imported, as is likely, you'll find a country of origin stamped somewhere around the ricasso of the blade. Don't forget to look on the spine. IIRC, that is a fine example of a M1902.

    And I recalled that Tom Nardi at SRS does offer to bend scabbards to fit specific blades, it might be worth an email to him when you track a scabbard of the proper length down. His website is: http://www.cds1.net/~nardi/swords/index.htm

  9. #9

    M1902 Sword

    Sean, thank you for the info.. Now I have a place to start in researching my sword. So does that mean that Henry V. Allen put an imported blade to the hilt to finish it or did that company simply act as a distributor? I will look on the ricasso for a country of origin. I know I am going to sound like a complete dork but you are going to have to educate me. The ricasso is where exactly? (Please understand that this is my first exposure to sword collecting and I know NOTHING at this point.)

    Thanks,

    Eric

  10. #10
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    Eric,


    No questions are stupid when starting out....how else will one learn....

    The ricasso is the part of the blade that enters the hilt...un-sharpened / unshaped.

    You may find it a bit difficult to find a scabbard that fits your blade..exactly. I remember this sword from when I visited Dominic in June. Different 1902's have different curves to the blades. Sometimes scabbards for M1902's show up on Ebay...so you may keep an eye peeled there.

    I'm posting a pic of my 2 M1902's to show there differences in blade curvature.

    Cheers,

    Bill

    ps #4 & #5 in the line up are the '02's
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    billgoodwin333@yahoo.com

    "I was born for this" - Joan of Arc

  11. #11

    So thats the ricasso

    Thanks Bill,

    I believe I have officially started on my journey of sword collecting now that I am learning some terminology.

    Bill, do you know anything about Henry V. Allen, besides the facts posted by Sean Scott? I am trying to find as much information as I can about this sword.

    Thanks,

    Eric

  12. #12
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    Eric,


    Unfortunately I nothing further on Henry Allen. Print reference material on M1902's is very sparse.
    I'm guessing, Sean got that maker info. from R. Bezdek's book on American swords.....

    I'm always on the look out for any type of reference material (books. articles.etc) on M9102's.

    Now that you've been formally bitten by the bug...be prepared to spend alot of time reading....it pays off in the long run.


    Cheers,


    Bill

    ps you can see more examples of different M1902's on my Photobucket page which can be linked to from my profile.
    billgoodwin333@yahoo.com

    "I was born for this" - Joan of Arc

  13. #13
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    Random chatter from the peanut gallery.

    Horn grips are within the early range. I don't recall seeing any with horn listed as being made after WWI.

    All m1902 swords have (should have) the six pointed star. the six pointed star is not meant as reference to Jerusalam or Judaism but as the star of Damascus and simply signifying quality. It is not a blanket acknowledgment as would be a Masonic or other fraternal reference to the star of the east. Not my theory (see A2A) but I subscribe to it.

    As with other swords, there were many uniform supply companies whose names might show up in the markings. Lists of company and maker names are a great start but tell little of the actualities. Soem are better represented in other sources of company histories and personal biographies.

    One would think that the import laws of the late 19th century regarding marking country of origin would mean something indelible but it was/is not.

    Again, just chattering.

    Cheers

    Hotspur; Bill is almost successful in seducing me with these swords

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glen C. View Post
    All m1902 swords have (should have) the six pointed star.
    Sorry, Glen, not correct. None of the Springfield Armory sabers (the "real" ones, if such a thing exists) have the six-pointed star, and many American manufactured blades do not. Regulation Standard, Lilley and Ames swords immediately come to mind.

    My guess is that the six-pointed star was added by European (German) manufacturers on imported blades, though it is a feature I like quite a bit...

    As with other swords, there were many uniform supply companies whose names might show up in the markings. Lists of company and maker names are a great start but tell little of the actualities. Soem are better represented in other sources of company histories and personal biographies.
    One of the reasons it is difficult to get a handle on the M1902 is that many, if not most, of the imported blades were stamped or acid etched with nothing but the name of whatever company sold the sword retail, and the numbers of those are in the hundreds at least. Reasonably precise dating is difficult, and relies principally on manufacture methods and materials that were not evenly applied among the manufacturers.

    That's probably a major part of why these swords are relatively ignored by collectors...it just so darned difficult to say exactly what you have.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Scott View Post
    That's probably a major part of why these swords are relatively ignored by collectors...it just so darned difficult to say exactly what you have.
    I imagine that is why the Springfield Armory 1902s get such good prices is that they produced those swords for a finite period of time, which makes dating them much easier.

    Jonathan

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.G. Hopkins View Post
    I imagine that is why the Springfield Armory 1902s get such good prices is that they produced those swords for a finite period of time, which makes dating them much easier.

    Jonathan
    I agree. The ease of identifying the year-range of manufacture by the etching design, combined with the known (and small) numbers produced make the SA swords much more amenable to collecting.

    Unfortunately for me, they've been getting increased attention lately...

  17. #17
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    The S-A '02's and the metal grip Lilleys usually go quick and fetch a nice sum. A metal grip Lilley just ended today on Ebay, that would have made a nice addition to my 2, but I couldn't bid due to being at work.........



    Cheers,

    Bill

    (Glen, you've returned the favor by sparking my interest in the American eagle pommels...so what goes around, comes around )

    Bill
    Last edited by Bill Goodwin; 10-17-2007 at 10:35 AM.
    billgoodwin333@yahoo.com

    "I was born for this" - Joan of Arc

  18. #18
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    I have an '02 with leather covered grips, the usual pattern on the blade, no six-pointed star and no markings except "MADE IN USA" on the ricasso....date?
    "Ancora imparo - Michelangelo Buonarotti"

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert E. Ozias View Post
    I have an '02 with leather covered grips, the usual pattern on the blade, no six-pointed star and no markings except "MADE IN USA" on the ricasso....date?
    Is the blade secured with a peen or a nut?

    Is the guard and pommel made of nickel-silver, plated brass, or plated steel?

    With that kind of '02, the closest you could hope for would be a rough decade estimate...

  20. #20
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    The stepped pommel is secured with a T shaped nut which is oval to match the steps. The guard, backstrap etc., appear to be nickle plated steel.
    "Ancora imparo - Michelangelo Buonarotti"

  21. #21
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    Well, it's probably no older than the late 1930s. Peened pommels and nickel-silver furniture began to disappear around the mid-1930s.

    And a leather-covered grip was not regulation, so IMO was probably not used by an officer...though observance of regs seems to have been, umm, rather lax back then...

  22. #22
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    Thanks for the correction Sean, that's what I get for taking internet information too seriously (or simply misreading it).

    Cheers

    Hotspur; there sure are a lot of these out there

  23. #23
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    with respect to the sword Eric bought i seem to remember when Bill visited he commented on the direction/angle of the American motto?

    http://s193.photobucket.com/albums/z...t=P1010009.jpg

    just to add to this disussion
    “Do you know what astonished me most in the world? The inability of force to create anything. In the long run, the sword is always beaten by the spirit.” Napoleon Bonaparte

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by dominic grant View Post
    with respect to the sword Eric bought i seem to remember when Bill visited he commented on the direction/angle of the American motto?

    http://s193.photobucket.com/albums/z...t=P1010009.jpg

    just to add to this disussion
    I read somewhere on the 'net that blades that have their decoration with that orientation (perpendicular to the blade) tend to be later, while those with the decoration parallel to the blade are earlier. Sound familiar to anyone?

    Jonathan

  25. #25
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    What I don't know would fill oceans but from about 1790 to the 1840 regulations, swords seem to display the eagle without putting a crick in your neck.

    With the 1902, I really don't know but have a hunch it is more a matter of how the maker did things, early or late. I do know that by the ACW, most everything seemed longwise, as opposed to upright. I do know I have seen very new 1902s that are longwise.

    Cheers

    Hotspur; from a five-ball Upson
    Last edited by Glen C.; 02-21-2008 at 11:34 PM.

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