Old South Military Antiques

Map on Tree Oval Plate
Item #: OS-7415


With War looming on the horizon, the Governor A.B. Moore of Alabama recommended to the legislature on January 14, 1861 that an Army of State troops be raised and designated monies to arm and equip the new troops. Since the 1850’s the seal of Alabama showed a scroll nailed to a large tree, growing strong and getting its nourishment from the soil of Alabama. A crude map and the words "MAP OF ALABAMA” were placed upon the scroll. This "Map on Tree” was placed upon oval, rectangular and two piece buckles. The oval is the rarest of the three and is one of the true prizes of Confederate buckle collections. The oval has documented use by both officers and enlisted men. The same firm who made this buckle also made the rare North Carolina "NC” oval waist belt plate.

The Alabama waist belt buckle shown here was excavated on the Cold Harbor Battlefield, circa 1960, by Harry Cassidy.

Because it was excavated so long ago, the plate’s face retained remarkable detail one hundred years after it was lost. So clear in fact that you can easily read "MAP OF ALABAMA”. It has a beautiful untouched patina. The reverse still has all three hooks and a piece of the soldier’s belt attached.

The reverse was coated with polyurethane to seal it and prevent flaking, because when it was excavated one small place was starting to raise up.

Remarkably, the caps on the "puppy paw” studs are gold plated and engraved. This is one of the best excavated "Map on Tree” oval belt buckle in existence.


On Hold