Old South Military Antiques

Rarity 10 AVC Cartridge Box Plate
Item #: OS-7416

On February 24, 1860, the Alabama legislature authorized the formation of the Alabama Volunteer Corps or A.V.C. This was deemed a prudent response to the North’s vocal support of John Brown’s fanatical raid on Harper’s Ferry, Virginia.

The men who formed the companies of the A.V.C. were the most affluent and well-educated sons of Alabama. These various companies uniformed themselves in whatever fashion suited. There is no record of the accoutrements of most of the companies, but judging from the rarity of the A.V.C. Belt Plate, few adopted the regulation pattern.

With the outbreak of the shooting war in the spring of 1861, the A.V.C. effectually ceased to exist as its members rushed to join regiments headed for the seat of war.

Due to their pre-war military experience and education level, the men of the A.V.C. would naturally have formed the nucleus of the Alabama Officer’s Corps, which later distinguished themselves on so many a bloody field.

There are two slightly different variations of the A.V.C. Belt Plate, both of which were produced between the formation of the A.V.C. in early 1860 and the disintegration of the Corps in the spring of 1861.

On page 124 of Confederate Belt Buckles and Plates, Expanded Edition by Steve E. Mullinax, this exact plate is shown and is described as the only known full size AVC cartridge box plate in existence. The book also records that it was discovered along the Confederate retreat route from the Battle of Shiloh.

The plate has a very attractive patina and is documented to a specific battle and is published in "the” buckle book. Both iron loops remain intact and solid. It has never been cleaned or altered in any way.