RARE AMES U.S. NAVY FIGHTING SHORT SWORD
Presented is an Ames fighting short sword that resembles a Roman infantry sword. It was
first made as Model 1832 and issued to regular artillery regiments and infantry, but quickly found its way into sea
service. The Ames short sword appeared in their catalog as Number 350. This example is complete and in excellent
condition without regard to its age and years of service.
The difference between the Navy version and the foot and artillery sword is that the blade tang
extends all the way though the hilt, and is securely preened over the top of the pommel. It was likely made in 1848
when the town of Cabotville became part of the new town of Chicopee. Two of these swords are currently selling on
the internet for up to $1800.00
The blade is 1 1/4″ wide at the hilt and 20″ long. There is a single
wide “fuller”, starting 1/2″below the hilt that is 13 1/4″ long. The handle is 5 5/8″ long, 1 1/4 wide and 7/8″
thick. The entire hilt is cast brass. The grip is molded with a decoration that looks like the tips of eagle feathers. The
quillons is a straight cross. The scabbard is red leather with a brass throat band and tip. There is a stud on the reverse side
to attach it to a frog.
With the passing of time and use, the Ames imprint has been worn down, but still
recognizable on the end of blade near the hilt, “Mfg. Co. and Chicopee”. Clearly
remaining on the reverse is “USN, GGS, and 18xx”. GGS is likely the stamp of the inspector and only the first two numerals
of the year are recognizable.
Because it was shorter and lighter than the heavier swords of the time, it was readily adopted
at sea because it was more easily carried and used on the crowed ship’s decks or in the rigging.
brass handle with eagle tip feathers
CONDITION: Considering its age and use, this is a near perfect example
which is in excellent near “mint” condition. The blade’s edges have some small nicks which show it may have been used in drill.
There are only a few very tiny spots of corrosion at the tip of the blade. One rivet is missing from each side of the scabbard’s tip
band. The blade is solid in its handle.
Mid section of blade, wide fuller
Handle 5 5/8″ L x 7/8″ W x 1 1/4″ H
Blade 20″ L x 1 1/4″ W x 1/4″ T at widest
Weight 1 Pound 14 ounces
Shown is a custom made Mahogany stand
that shows how magnificently this rare sword will display in your collection.
The stand is not included in this offering, but is available for purchase
separately through a separately.