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Thread: Anyone know of a scabbard for the M1902?

  1. #51

    My blade

    George,

    Try as I might, I can't seem to find ANY makers name or mark on this sword other than the Henry V. Allen displayed at the bottom of the blade, so I can't tell you where the blade was made simply because I don't know. It's frustarting to me because I'd like to know what I have. Oh well. That is why they call it a "hobby".

    See ya,

    Eric

  2. #52
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    More Ames anomolies

    Eric,

    Allen is generally considered to be a maker but I suspect he assembled more than manufactured as he was a militaria retailer who sold lots of different military items. Your blade could have been made in the US or Germany (in all probability) but was etched, or stamped, with Allen's trade marking.

    Here is another anomoly. I show two swords with different maker marks on the blade. One is marked Lilley-Ames and the other is marked Wm Rowland. William Rowland of Phila, Pa. is generally considered to be a maker who went out of business in 1921. If this is true, he was no more than an assembler it seems because his sword is identical to the other one shown marked Lilley-Ames and this trade marking supposedly did not appear until 1925.

    You be the judge if these were made by the same hands.

    Notice the shape of the hilts where the black grip overrides the end of the pommel and gives a rather pouty lower lip appearance. Notice the blade etching templates are identical, particularly the ends of the etching. Notice the scabbards both have the same peculiar flat throatpiece and drain holes in the back of the scabbard drag.
    Attached Images Attached Images      

  3. #53
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    Would agree George in that Rowland was probably no more than a assembler / retailer. My Rowland blade is marked "Germany". Also I've seen other William C. Rowlands and the actual makers / retailer stamp / etching differ. The same with my Francis Bannerman.... have seen a variation as far as the makers stamp / etch goes.

    Too, I recently saw on Ebay a William C. Rowland with a metal grip. Up to that point, I thought only M C Lilley and Springfield Armoury made 1902's with metal grips. Just goes to show, once you think you've got a decent grab on things....up pops something out of the blue......

    As George was making mention of grip variations, if you look at the pics I posted of my 2, notice how much smaller the bone grip on the Bannerman is than the Bakelite grip of the Rowland.

    Again, great examples George....thanx




    Bill
    Last edited by Bill Goodwin; 10-25-2007 at 03:36 AM.
    billgoodwin333@yahoo.com

    "I was born for this" - Joan of Arc

  4. #54
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    Bill,

    Excellent information on your Rowland sword with a German blade. The information on the metal gripped 1902 is also new to me as I have seen very few of these over the years. The Rowland sword that I show above has a blade stamped "MADE IN USA" at the ricasso next to the guard. I suspect that Rowland either bought parts from Ames or simply had Ames manufacture this sword (wholesale) with his etched trademark/name on the ricasso.

    I find this particular Rowland sword interesting because it seems to have been made between 1902 and 1920 if Richard Bezdek is correct in his research in "American Swords and Sword Makers." I suspect the end of WWI helped the demise of Rowland as the demand for US Army swords would have gone from hot to cold in 1919. This would correspond with the time when Ames was almost bankrupt and had been bought by Frank Henderson who was operating as Henderson-Ames. Ames continued operateration as the Ames Sword Company until finally bought out by M.C. Lilley in 1925. Again, (according to Bezdek) the Lilley-Ames marking did not surface offcially until 1931, when it was changed from The Lilley Company.

    The other Lilley-Ames sword I show alongside the circa 1902-1920 Rowland sword is dated 1939 in the presentation etch. So this means that these two swords were made no less than some 20 years apart. Yet, they exhibit the same manufacturing characteristics. This seems to be one reason why it is so difficult to correctly date these swords by various manufacturing quirks.

    George

  5. #55
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    About that steel grip William C. Rolwand.....you can still view the listing even though the bidding has ended Ebay item # 320171547260.


    Bill
    billgoodwin333@yahoo.com

    "I was born for this" - Joan of Arc

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Goodwin View Post
    I thought only M C Lilley and Springfield Armoury made 1902's with metal grips.
    SA made metal grips???

  7. #57

    Older handle, newer blade?

    Sean or George, or anyone else who wants to comment,

    So is it possible or even probable that the Henry V. Allen co. from New York assembled this sword by mating an older handle to a newer blade?

    Thanks,

    Eric

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Schutte View Post
    Sean or George, or anyone else who wants to comment,

    So is it possible or even probable that the Henry V. Allen co. from New York assembled this sword by mating an older handle to a newer blade?

    Thanks,

    Eric
    I don't see any reason to think so...production was more or less continuous, so components would have been continually used to make product. You get mismatches like you describe when production halts for a long time (years) and then is started back up again, or when a maker buys old surplus from another maker.

    And your sword seems perfectly consistent with a 1930s-vintage M1902...

  9. #59
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    I agree with Sean. Ames is one of few sword companies that made all their own parts from scratch. Even Ames might use old stock parts to assemble swords so earlier blades might be assembled onto newer hilts and vice-versa. Sword producers were making a product and used the, "parts-is-parts" philosophy. I am sure Allen simply used available parts when producing your sword. That is why I feel it is very difficult to precisely nail down a specific time when these swords were manufactured. The exception is when they are dated.

  10. #60
    Sean and George,

    Once again, thanks for the insight. I have only been a part of this forum for 1 month and already I have learned a TON!

    Thanks again,

    Eric

  11. #61
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    Metal grips

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Goodwin View Post
    About that steel grip William C. Rolwand.....you can still view the listing even though the bidding has ended Ebay item # 320171547260.


    Bill
    Gents,

    I would like to bring this thread back up in order to ask what type of metal grips anyone may have observed on these 1902 Officer swords?

    I have a 1902 sword marked, "The M.C. Lilley & Co. Columbus, O." that has a metal grip as might be expected from this maker. This particular sword has a one-piece grip/backstrap/ferrule made as a single brass casting. The separate guard is also cast in brass and the entire hilt is nickel plated. There is no paint finish on the grips.

    Has anyone seen these 1902 metal grips made as a separate piece or painted or cast in steel or nickel or any other metal?

    George
    "You can't please everyone, so you have to please yourself." Ricky Nelson

  12. #62
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    George,

    Here are two photos of metal grip 1902's I have on file. Both are MC Lilley and one shows some signs of black paint at one time. Are far as the separate casting of backstrap, ferrule,...unsure...one of these looks as though it may be more than one piece construction....
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    billgoodwin333@yahoo.com

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  13. #63
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    Metal grip

    Bill,

    Thanks for the photos. These two swords appear to be identical to mine. Same maker marking and same hilt. My guard is plated brass as is my one-piece grip/backstrap/ferrule. The blade is peened to the hilt as in the two that you show. One thing that I notice is that all three examples seem to have a polished backstrap and ferrule but a brush finished grip area. This may have been to hold black paint if the grip was to be painted. I suppose that one might have been able to order the sword with either a black painted grip or one that was simply plated?

    Does anyone know how the metal grips on the Rowland or Springfield swords were finished? Plated or polished or painted?

    George
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    Last edited by George Wheeler; 04-17-2008 at 11:25 AM.
    "You can't please everyone, so you have to please yourself." Ricky Nelson

  14. #64
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    Since we're on the topic of m1902's George, will you post up the pics of the Phillipine Constabulary variant? Sorry for the thread hijack

  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by R. Hoq View Post
    Since we're on the topic of m1902's George, will you post up the pics of the Phillipine Constabulary variant? Sorry for the thread hijack


    Not George, but here's a couple of pics of a P-C....
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    billgoodwin333@yahoo.com

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  16. #66
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    Hi all. I am bumping this thread because i learned a lot from it. I also emailed Bill about my sword and he gave me some very valuable info about it.

    Looks like it's a pre-WWI M.C. Lilley & Co M1902. The grip looks to be ebony. there used to be a leather tassel hanging from it, but that disappeared sometime when i was a kid (in fact, i'm probably responsible for losing it when I was a kid). The scabbard is dented and scratched a bit, but the sword itself is in great condition.

    My great grandfather gave this to my father and he passed it along to me after he died. It's proudly hanging in my office.

    I decided to post it as another example of the variety of etchings.

    Sorry for the flash on the pictures. Enjoy!
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    Last edited by Brian Mason; 02-16-2010 at 06:17 AM. Reason: picts

  17. #67
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    Your M1902 !

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Schutte View Post
    Sean and George,

    Once again, thanks for the insight. I have only been a part of this forum for 1 month and already I have learned a TON!

    Thanks again,

    Eric
    Eric,

    Welcome to the forum !

    and just a bit of trivia about your sword.....I had my sweaty hands on that same saber a few years back when I visited Dom's place (AKA 'Ye olde sword shoppe' ) on at least two occasions I picked it up.... but always put it down as I said to myself '...steady...don't be tempted by the 'Americans'... concentrate on the British swords!'.....
    ....It's good to see it finally went to a good home ! ..

    Cheers Peter

    PS If you ever decide to do anything rash with it... please wipe off my DNA !
    "Shoot straight you bastards and don't make a mess of it !"
    Lt. Harry 'Breaker' Morant, Bushveldt Carbineers, Australian soldier, poet & national hero, excecuted by firing squad, Boer War, 1902.

  18. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Mason View Post
    Hi all. I am bumping this thread because i learned a lot from it. I also emailed Bill about my sword and he gave me some very valuable info about it.

    Looks like it's a pre-WWI M.C. Lilley & Co M1902. The grip looks to be ebony. there used to be a leather tassel hanging from it, but that disappeared sometime when i was a kid (in fact, i'm probably responsible for losing it when I was a kid). The scabbard is dented and scratched a bit, but the sword itself is in great condition.

    My great grandfather gave this to my father and he passed it along to me after he died. It's proudly hanging in my office.

    I decided to post it as another example of the variety of etchings.

    Sorry for the flash on the pictures. Enjoy!
    Brian,

    Thanks for showing your 1902 sword! It is always nice to have a family piece in your home. And as to damage, I distinctly recall sword fighting with a couple of circa 1840 Militia swords at my grandmother's when I was a kid. Nowadays I hate it when I see similar swords that have been mistreated by kids because I recall that I was just as unknowingly destructive in my youth. I wish I still had those two swords today.

    George
    "You can't please everyone, so you have to please yourself." Ricky Nelson

  19. #69
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    Thanks George. This thing has always been hanging around somewhere, ever since i can remember. My dad used to yell at me for grabbing it all the time, but it was just so cool as a kid, that i couldn't help myself. Last night, when i finally decided to research it again, was the first time I have actually grabbed it since I put it on the wall 5 years ago.

    luckily, it seems as though I never actually tried to play with it other than hold it. it's in very good shape. The grip has some wear and discoloration where the fingers fold under. This tells me it was actually handled a lot before my great grandfather gave it to my dad. Not sure how it got into the family to begin with though. I wish i knew who used it and for how long. A lot of history that i'll never know.

    So, was the M1902 strictly a ceremonial sword for parades and such?

  20. #70
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    1902

    I have the Eickhorn Solingen factory correspondence from the 1920s and 30s on these swords. It is pretty cool 100s of pages.... I'm working on scan it all in to a reference... Regards: James

  21. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Mason View Post

    So, was the M1902 strictly a ceremonial sword for parades and such?
    Brian,

    The US Civil War swords were pretty much the last real US combat swords that were actually utilized in wartime. I think that CS General NB Forrest was reputed to have killed some 31 Union Soldiers in hand to hand combat and many of those with his sword. The lighter 1872 regulation swords were more badges of rank for the individual services than useful in combat. The regulation 1902 Army Officer sword was an attempt to make one generic sword for all US Army officers and was not used in combat that I am aware of. Of course... never say never because somebody will always put a round peg into a square hole. I suppose the Patton swords were the last that were designed for mounted combat but again, they never saw use in anger that I am aware of.

    George
    "You can't please everyone, so you have to please yourself." Ricky Nelson

  22. #72
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    Brian,

    just another added tid-bit that you may or may not already know....

    the M1902 pattern is still used in today's Army.


    cheers,

    Bill
    billgoodwin333@yahoo.com

    "I was born for this" - Joan of Arc

  23. #73
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    You guys are the best! Thanks!

    Who is making these swords these days?

  24. #74
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    In Germany there are two.. Frank Schmitz factory and WKC both in Solingen.. Regards: James

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    Quote Originally Posted by James B. View Post
    In Germany there are two.. Frank Schmitz factory and WKC both in Solingen.. Regards: James
    And neither compare remotely with the pre-WWII sabers. Wilkinson was probably the last to make something resembling a weapon.

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