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Thread: US Naval Officers Swords 1872 to 1942

  1. #101
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Hudson OH
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gene Henriksen View Post
    I am new here and have one purpose in posting: I inherited my uncle's World War II US Navy sword. He was commissioned in May 1941. I had admired it since I was about 6 years old. My cousin recently died and I was able to obtain the sword plus my uncle's ribbons, Cmdr's insignia, his bronze star, etc. The part of the handle that was originally white is now very dull. The brass shows signs of Brasso being left on it years ago. The bottom 8 to 10 inches of the scabbard it missing. I want to conserve it and pass it on to my grandson who is enamored with all things WWII. After Christmas, I will take it to The Mariner's Museum here in Newport News, VA to discuss it with their conservators.

    Is the old all-leather scabbard worth restoring? Can they be replaced? Is there someone who can properly clean and restore the blade and handle?

    Sorry for lack of proper terminology but this is my first adventure into swords.

    Gene Henriksen
    (The USAF did not issue swords to us officers)
    Gene, Assuming you uncle bought a new sword it would be one like those at the beginning of this thread. I also assume that the leather covering on the steeling liner is what has deteriorated. This is a problematic repair and answering these questions maybe helpful.
    Is this sword personalized with your uncles name?
    Is there any of the original leather remaining?

    The posting of pictures will help.

  2. #102
    Quote Originally Posted by T. Graham View Post
    Gene, Assuming you uncle bought a new sword it would be one like those at the beginning of this thread. I also assume that the leather covering on the steeling liner is what has deteriorated. This is a problematic repair and answering these questions maybe helpful.
    Is this sword personalized with your uncles name?
    Is there any of the original leather remaining?

    The posting of pictures will help.
    The sword is not personalized but does say USN. This was post-Depression and I doubt he wanted to spend money on engraving. The eagle's head on the hilt looks to the eagle's left (viewer's right). The blade stated Made USA and appears to have a star of David behind it.

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  3. #103
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
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    [QUOTE=Gene Henriksen;1224826]The sword is not personalized but does say USN. This was post-Depression and I doubt he wanted to spend money on engraving. The eagle's head on the hilt looks to the eagle's left (viewer's right). The blade stated Made USA and appears to have a star of David behind it.

    It is the common Lilley-Ames type IV shown at the beginning of the thread. I think the scabbard is beyond repair and I would not bother to do anything but oil or wax the blade.

  4. #104
    Thank you sir, I appreciate the answer and your time.

  5. #105
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
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    Annandale, VA
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    Quote Originally Posted by George Wheeler View Post
    I wanted to resurrect this thread to discuss a Coast Guard sword that I recently picked up. I believe that Tim had commented on USCG swords but we have not posted any yet. I will try and get some photos of my sword up as soon as possible.

    At any rate, my sword is an early USCG Officer sword of the "WWI" type that Tim describes. It was made by Lilley and the ricasso has the earlier etched "Made by M.C. Lilley & CO. Columbus Ohio" (without "The" preceeding M.C.) along with the large etched proof star with a Lilly flower in the center as well as between each arm of the star. It has the earlier "bottle cap" pommel with the eagle facing to it's left (the viewer's right). The scabbard has a black leather covered metal body with the standard fittings and all components, including the blade, are marked with a matching assembly number of "70". The straight blade is etched with "N.L. Edwards" and the only Coast Guard Officer I can find that matches is Nathaniel L. Edwards who is found on a list of USCG officers on active duty in 1944.

    We know the USCG swords can be no earlier than 1915 and WWI manufacture seems plausible from the early construction of this sword. While Nathaniel Edwards could have served in WWII, perhaps as a "retread", but this seems an awfully long service time. I wonder if I have my dates wrong or if there is another N.L. Edwards that I have missed?

    George
    In a recent thread asking questions regarding the M1852 Navy Officer sword, Glen C. referred us to this old thread. In reviewing it, I was reminded of our discussion of your USCG sword with the seemingly anachronistic maker’s mark “Made by MC Lilley”. We were all rather puzzled why a sword made after 1915 wouldn’t include the word “The” before M. C. Lilley since that was the formulation the company had used for marking its products since the 1880s. A number of explanations were posited, but most seemed to focus on it being the result of an error made during the repair or modification of an older etching template. Last year I acquired a similar sword. Although an obviously different etching template was used for my blade, it also deleted the word “The” from the company’s name. With at least two examples using this formulation, it would appear this was not an error and for whatever reason the company intentionally deleted the “The” in marking these swords. There is another related issue. I had dated my USCG sword as pre-1925 because during the 1925 to 1931 timeframe the company was named “The Lilley Company” and so marked its products. However in reviewing this old thread I am reminded that based on his service record, the officer named on your sword probably obtained it in 1930. Perhaps it was a case of NOS, but who really knows.

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  6. #106
    Join Date
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    Thanks for the update Richard. It is always good to know of another sword with the same markings. So, not a orphan after all.

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

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