|Description and Photograph||
The Confederate States General Issue, Forked Tongue Waist Belt Buckle shown here is made of sand cast brass. This pattern was produced in three sizes, a large, medium and small or “baby” frame as early as 1861 by Confederate Governmental contract. This is the smallest of the three sizes, commonly known as the “baby”.
Because this plain buckle was so easy to make and use, they saw widespread use, much more so than the buckles with the letters CS found thereon. In excavated condition the largest of these buckles are one of the most commonly found Confederate general issue buckles; the smallest, or "Baby" is the rarest of the three sizes. Because they had not the “magic CS” letters, they were not often put away after the War by their owners or captors as souvenirs.
These were so useful on the farm to repair harness or to strap something together that the belts of the returned enlisted soldiers were used up. I once excavated one of the large Forked Tongue Frame buckles along the base of a collapsed barn where it had been hung on the wall of the barn prior to its disintegration.
The buckle has a slight crack along the border which only goes about halfway through so that it does not affect the integrity in any way. It still retains the deepest of woodsy patinas.