Old South Military Antiques

Kraft, Goldsmith and Kraft Cavalry Officer’s Sword
Item #: OS-7480









In 1861, Henry Kraft, a jeweler, his brother Peter, a gunsmith, and one of their employees, Major Maurice Goldsmith, formed Kraft, Goldsmith & Kraft military outfitters. The Columbia, South Carolina firm was a militaria retailer and manufacturer. All current published works list Lipman Goldsmith as a partner, but recent research has shown that he was merely a clerk for the company at the beginning of the War, and that he was working in Baltimore, Maryland by 1863.

The company is known for producing some of the finest swords in the Confederacy, and no other company can boast so many of their swords in the hands of prominent Confederates. Our particular subject at this time is the company’s massive Cavalry Officer’s Sword. The sword is thirty-eight and a quarter inches long and an inch and a half broad at the ricasso. The hilt is nearly large enough to grasp with two hands. . It is perfect except for a missing throat washer and for the Confederate owner’s alteration; he cut the finger loop off even with the ferule. Perfect grip, perfect guard, beautiful blade, pristine scabbard.

Less than ten of these swords are known to exist, and it is believed that all were purchased by Wade Hampton, for presentation to his officers. Three of them are believed to have been samples, as they were three slightly different variations, two of which remained in the Hampton family until 1864, Hampton carrying the third. Not coincidently I think the most common pattern, with leather grip wrap and an iron scabbard, was the one Hampton chose for his own use. Hampton at one time had the aforementioned model, an identical sword, but with a shagreen grip wrap and a leather wrapped model in a leather covered wooden scabbard. All have the Spanish language motto with translates "Draw me not without reason, nor sheath me without honor”.


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