Old South Military Antiques

Confederate Baltimore Pike Head
Item #: OS-7409




The Winan’s pike head shown here has a remarkable history recorded on two labels pasted to the pike and staff. The larger printed label pasted to the pike’s blade is clearly a museum or display label which reads:

"CONFEDERATE PIKES AND LANCES – Civil War 1861-5

Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 are pikes; 6 and 7 are lances. No. 1, a N.C. model (many wagon loads burned Raleigh 186- as the Union Army entered the city.No. 2 pike made basically in quantity at Winans’ Works, Baltimore 1861, principally, it is believed, for attack on Ft. McHenry. No. 3 Captured in Salisbury, N.C., April 1, 1865. No. 4 captured at Milledgeville Nov. 24, 1864, (the Georgia State Model); No. 5, 6 and 7 (in quantity) were among the arms taken at the fall of Richmond 1865.

(Collected by Capt. W. McK. Heath, now in possession of Gen. T. T. Heath, Cincinnati.)”

The smaller label, written in ink and pasted to the staff reads:

"Marshall Kane Pike made

at Winan’s Iron Foundry

Baltimore, MD. Charged in

capturing Ft. McHenry”

There is a notation with the pike that reads: Acquired from the late Erick Davis August 30, 1976.

A May 21st, 1861 article in the New York Tribune reads:

"IMPORTANT SEIZURE OF ARMS

Baltimore, Tuesday, May 21, 1861.

This afternoon two companies, numbering 120 muskets from the Philadelphia camp composed of Company E. Lieut. Ruggled, Company G, Capt. Phelps, the battalion under the command of Major McLane, came to the city and proceeded to an unoccupied house near Green Mount Cemetery, and seized a large quantity of arms stored there, comprising 1,600 muskets, the boxes marked "Virginia Muskets” and 34 boxes containing 4,000 pikes, the boxes marked "From Deumeads” The whole made twenty six dray loads and were all taken to camp and thence to Fort McHenry. The arms had been in the custody of the city authorities.”

After the riots of April 19th, 1861, Police Marshal George Proctor Kane ordered several thousand pikes manufactured at Ross Winan's Iron Works. With these weapons he intended to arm the citizens of Baltimore against future attacks by Northern invaders. Many of the pikes were captured by General Benjamin Butler when he occupied Baltimore City in May of 1861. The pikes were sent to Fort McHenry (of Star Spangled Banner fame) where the staffs were cut off.

The total length is sixteen inches and has a 9.5 inch blade.


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