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A recent story published in the Washington Post at the end of June raises something of conundrum with certain moral and ethical principles attached. To whom does a former military firearm bought by a collector on the commercial market years – decades even – after such a weapon saw military service?
In a world where collectible arms can reach six figures in value there are, believe it or not, areas of collecting that are still affordable. This column will regularly feature areas of specialization that are inexpensive, fun, challenging and highly rewarding in collector satisfaction.
This Bowie (figure 1) by famed maker Henry Schively was most certainly used as a belt knife. It sports an original sheath with loops intact. I have seen similar styled knives made by Schively both with horn and stag handles, this one sporting the former with three pins which I believe to have a high silver content. This Bowie is about 11” long overall with a 6.5” blade.
When collectors ponder the fine, handmade American arms from the 19th century, most avid students recall the makers that were located principally in the northern and eastern regions of the country. Many of these gunmakers had emigrated from European homelands that had been steeped in gunmaking traditions for centuries, and they brought their skills and love of the art with them to America. As one would expect, many of these gunmakers settled in the more populated regions of the U.S. where...
Prescott number 628 (top) and number 185 (bottom) In the field of antique arms the common terms "Pocket, Navy and Army" designate the different calibers of Civil War era revolvers. Pocket model revolvers were smaller caliber handguns, approximately 28 to 32 caliber. Navy model revolvers were medium sized handguns made in 34 to 38 caliber and Army model revolvers were made in larger calibers between 40 and 47 caliber.
There was a period in our history when killing and processing whales was an essential trade. Very little of the whale was wasted. Whale oil provided illumination, sperm oil had dozens of uses, from cosmetics to lubrication and whale meat was a delicacy. Baleen, the filtering mechanism from certain types of whale was the nearest thing to plastic in early days and used for ladies corset stays among other things.