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Thread: GAR M1860 Field and Staff Sword Repair

  1. #1

    Question GAR M1860 Field and Staff Sword Repair

    This sword belonged to my Great-Great Grandfather. I believe it is a Grand Army of the Republic M1860 Field and Staff Sword that he got as part of his duties as small GAR Post Commander in Pennsylvania. The brass wire that is wrapped around the hand grip has snapped.

    Question 1: I'm looking for an appropriate solution. Should I repair the original wire? Get it re-wrapped? Leave as is?

    I live in northern Oklahoma. Are either of the first two options viable in OK?

    Question 2: Am I correct in what the sword really is?

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    Thank you!
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    North of Reno NV
    This looks like a post Civil War model of the 1860 Field and Staff Officers sword. It was probably used in GAR ceremonies, unless he was still in the Sevice as an Officer after the War. Many of these swords were made with GAR on the counter guard, rather than the Eagle and flag stand. However many of the standard regulation swords were used by the Veterans after the war in their reunions, and encampments.
    As far as a fix on the wire goes there are a couple of ways you can go about fixing it. One of the easiest is to wrap the wire tight from both directions so that the ends meet, the using tape or some other suitable thing secure the wire in position, and using a good quality super glue, glue it in place. This solution is only good if you are only going to use it as a wall hanger where it is not going to be handled very much.
    For a more durable fix, you can use a replacement wire that is available from Sword Restoration, or, I am not sure which it is, but another Member may have the correct web site address. If you want to have someone else do the work, the owner of SRS does restoration work also.
    This model of sword is one of the most numerous on the market right behind the US M1902 Officers Saber. They are a beautiful sword, and having one which has family history is great.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Hudson OH
    This an inexpensive M1860 type. There were no regulations for uniforms, swords etc.; so it could have been used by a GAR Post. This is an easy repair. The ends of the wire are held in with wooden plugs. If you want to do it< I can talk you through it. I can do it for you, Contact me by private message.

  4. #4
    Roy, Thank you for your quick response.
    My Grandfather was a private in the 6th PA volunteers. The 6th PA was a heavy artillery outfit composed of men from western Pennsylvania. He did not stay in the service when the unit was deactivated at the end of the war. I've seen other GAR swords and this is the only one I've seen with the eagle (wings down) and flag instead of "GAR" on the guard. I'm guessing he got it as part of his duties in the GAR post. He was a farmer and would not have had much money, but he was a the local Post Commander and I did find his name on the role call of many encampments. So I know he did attend as the commander, and I suppose he had the sword with him.

    My intent is to display the sword along with another cavalry sword Name:  SAM_0110.JPG
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Size:  67.3 KB (will be posting that one soon) and my g-grandfather's discharge and pension papers and some photos. I think I would like to replace the wire. I will get in contact with SRS and ask them about it. I see that the forum post that came in after yours offered help as well.

    I'm SO excited about the knowledge out here in this forum!

    Thank you. Dave

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    North of Reno NV
    Swords always make nice displays, and once you have replaced the wire on the grip it will be a nice piece. Your idea of making a nice historical display of your family papers, and swords will be Great. I only wish some of my swords could talk, and relate their history.
    I would like to see more photos of your M1860 Cavalry saber. I would like to see close ups of the hilt, and also the ricasso areas, and any markings on them. These sabers saw lots of service during and after the Civil War. If your camera has the Close Up feature, then pictures of the ricasso area might come out sharper.
    Thanks again for sharing your swords with us.
    Roy in NV

  6. #6
    I will be happy to show more pictures! I'll start a new post for this one. Here's the link:
    Last edited by D Marshall; 01-27-2013 at 09:50 PM.


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