Old South Military Antiques

Ames South Carolina Contract Dragoon Sword
Item #: OS-7344

In 1832 it was determined to convert the existing core of U. S. Mounted Rangers into a regiment of dragoons. These newly designated troops would require swords, and in February 1833 Nathan Ames responded by submitting a proposal of five models of sword to the ordnance department for the use of the newly formed regiment of dragoons.

The sword that was adopted had a quill backed, blade with a steel hilt, black leather grip, and steel scabbard similar to the model 1822 British light cavalry saber. The next day the ordnance department ordered one thousand swords.

At some time during this era the South Carolina government agreed upon a contract with Ames to produce dragoon sabers for the use of the state’s militia. These rare swords can be identified by the South Carolina in script marking upon their blades and the rounded, instead of stepped pommel.

This particular example is in excellent condition, though it has clearly seen an extreme amount of wear, visible on the worn away drag and the flattened side of the ring mount. The leather on the grip is original, almost 100% complete and the scabbard features very few dents. There is some limited pitting on the blade and it has darkened with age, but it is still semi-bright.

These swords are very rare, and if you wish to have one in your collection this may be your only chance for many years. I have been in the possession of only one in my entire collecting career.