Boyle & Gamble Cavalry Sword


Description and Photograph





     This is a classic Confederate Enlisted Cavalry sword.  It was manufactured by Boyle & Gamble in Richmond, Virginia.   Edwin Boyle & Thomas Gamble manufactured all manner of edged weapons for the Confederacy including officer’s swords, artillery swords, cavalry swords, bayonets and Bowie knives.  They are best known for their distinctive field and staff officer’s sword, but they also supplied a large number of enlisted cavalry swords.  The vast majority of these enlisted swords were sheathed in brass mounted iron scabbards; however, the very earliest of this pattern were sheathed in copper, mounted with brass.  So rare are these in their original copper scabbards that I have only owned one, and seen a handful in the last few decades.  In each case they were in rough condition, no doubt resulting from having to serve from the earliest days of the War.  Somehow this one escaped the excessive wear and abuse that typically afflicted these swords.

     I think it safe to say that a better example of this sword does not exist.  It is perfect.  The guard is as tight as the day it was manufactured and still retains strong traces of its original gold wash (another feature that ended as soon as the use of copper for scabbards).  The grip wrap and wire are one hundred percent complete and tight.  The blade retains virtually all of its original luster, with just the lightest of carbon staining.  Its original scabbard is a thing of beauty!  It does not have a single dent of imperfection.

     Not only is this sword the best of its kind, but it is also published on page 86 of one of the best Confederate sword references: Fighting Men of the Civil War by William C. Davis.

     If you are intent on collecting only the very best examples, you will never have an opportunity of buying a better example of this rare pattern.




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