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" I could not believe my eyes " 1810 Naval Dirk


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I could not believe what I was seeing at a weekend Antique Show in the San Antonio, TX area. There on the table in front of me was an item marked "Double letter opener" and priced at 45.00. When I saw what it was and picked it up to examin it to be sure, I just could not believe what I was seeing. I asked the dealer if he could do any better and he said yes. I will sell it to you for 40.00 including sales tax. He said he had priced it at 45.00 because he had never seen a double letter opener like this before.

 

Well tucked in the back of the leather sheath ( where a pair of matching shears would have been ) was a fantastic Silver Mounted US NAVAL DIRK (Circa 1810) with its original solid silver sheath.

 

I have attached a photo of the Letter opener, Leather Case and Dirk as the were together on the table and also a picture of the dirk and scabbard removed from the case.

 

These US NAVAL DIRKS are very scarce and especially in all silver hilts with a current value range of 1500.00 to 2000.00.

 

This is why I try to make the Antique shows , because you NEVER KNOW what you could find.

 

Ron Norman

 

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I know nothing at all about vintage blades, but you evidently scored... big time! Congrats!

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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Wow, I would have probably said "Nice letter opener" and kept walking, unknowingly. Blades are not my strongest area of knowledge. Nice score, congrats.

In memory of Dr. Leo P. Krall, USPHS
USS Uniontown (PF-65)

Interested in uniforms / groupings from Massachusetts and New England veterans

(particularly 26th "Yankee" Division), and original propaganda leaflets from WWI and WWII.

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So is the letter opener and leather some sort of addition to it? I'm having a hard time understanding the combo...

Looking for the following:

452nd and 447th Bomb Group items

Anything 12th Armored- especially uniforms

155th Assault Helicopter Company, Camp Coryell, or Ban Me Thuot Vietnam items[/center]


WWII US Navy Uniforms from the Battle Off Samar: USS Johnston DD-557, USS Hoel DD-553, USS Samuel B. Roberts DE-413, USS Heermann DD-532, USS Dennis DE-405, USS John C. Butler DE-339, USS Raymond DE-341, USS Fanshaw Bay St. Lo, White Plains, Kalinin Bay, Kitkun Bay and Gambier Bay...


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So is the letter opener and leather some sort of addition to it? I'm having a hard time understanding the combo...

 

Some where along the way the small Naval Dirk was put in the back part of the letter opener set wher normaly a pair of sisors would be. Sets of the letter opener with matching shears have been sold for years as a desk accessory. How and why the shears were removed and the dirk was put in their place one can only guess.

 

Perhaps the person whose name appears on the leather scabbard (" LEE HALL " ) lost or broke the shears and when someone was inventorying his estate just slid the dirk into the leather case as they were probably in the same desk drawer.

 

I wish I could tie the name to the dirk, but the dirk proceeded the desk set by around 150 years, and navy records of that period are hard to find.

 

Ron Norman

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In the book U.S. Naval Officers "Their Swords and Dirks" you will see similar dirks.

 

This dirk would be circa 1830.

 

It is not a typical style of US Naval dirk for the 1810 era.

Regards,

 

Michael Sweeney--Researcher and Collector of WW2 77TH Division

If you have any named items to a 77th Division Soldier please contact me!!!

 

In memoroy of my Grandfather

Eugene Henry Sweeney

1st Lieutenant of the 306th

Infantry Regiment Company L -

Veteran of Guam and Leyte

 

 

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In the book U.S. Naval Officers "Their Swords and Dirks" you will see similar dirks.

 

This dirk would be circa 1830.

 

It is not a typical style of US Naval dirk for the 1810 era.

Thanks for the information. I have the book on order and it has been shipped. I have researched quite a bit and find little is known about these small silver dirks. My research suggests that they were made by the many Baltimore Silver Smiths when that City was a major USN port. I know that there was an USN official order before 1810 the would not allow dirks to be worn on shore. There are some knowledgeable collectors that believe they are as early as the 1810 period.

 

Ron Norman

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The chance of random reward. It's what hooks gamblers, and collectors alike. It's why I dig through piles and piles of krap at estate sales, flea markets, etc. Just to experience what you just did! Grats on that dirk. Great find!


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Baseball legend Ted Williams put it well when asked which was the best team he ever played on. Without hesitation he said, “The United States Marine Corps.”

Always looking for any early Utah National Guard especially Spanish-American War Utah Light Artillery, and Utah City/ County World War One medals.

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I love the roulette of antique fairs!

 

Incredible!

LF

I collect items from The Battle of Iwo Jima (1945).

Top Iwo Jima Items I'm Looking For:

1) IDed 5th MarDiv Corpsman Jumper or Forest Green Coat.

2) IDed Coast Guard Navy Jumper

3) IDed CB's Sea Bee's Navy Jumper

4) IDed 147th Infantry Regiment Army Service Coat

5) IDed 32nd ID Army Service Coat (Occupation Kyushu with 5th MarDiv).

I am always looking for named and dated WWII USMC Forest Green wool alpha jackets/coats from the 5th Marine Division or other units who participated in the battle.

My Blog "Marines In Forest Green" http://marinesinfore...n.blogspot.com/

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always better to be the windshield instead of the bug....congrats. on a great find

Looking for: Fourth/ Seventh Rhode Island Infantry items


Purple Heart : Robert L. Freitag KIA ETO 2/11/45


Any US/German items with the last name "Freitag"


also, war-related posters



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AWESOME find! Congrats! Danny

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Forum Member #1691 since September 2007

Served in the US Army from 1960-80

First Sergeant (Retired)

Vietnam 1967 with 7-15th FA ~ [8"/175mm Gun] First Field Forces

Vietnam 1968 with 1-30th FA ~ [155mm] 1st Cavalry Division [AIRMOBILE]

President & Historian 30th FA Regiment Association ( WWW.HardChargers.Com )

Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the 30th Field Artillery Regiment in 2018

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Ha I love situations like that. Having to try and hide the fact that you're sweating, trembling, and your eyes are twitching while quickly handing over the money. Nice find!

I'm always looking to buy old sets of bagpipes

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AWESOME. I just showed your find to my wingman so she could see the potential in our weekend hunts of estate sales, as well as stopping at garage sales along the way. YOU DA MAN!

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Awesome find!

"May God have mercy upon my enemies because I won't"
"It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived"
"Americans will not tolerate a loser"
-- General George S. Patton Jr.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
In Memoriam: Private First Class Vincent J. Zabbia

Company K, 3rd Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division

Wounded in Action: 30 March 1943 Hill 574 El Guettar, Tunisia

Died of Wounds: 9 April 1943

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Well when you know you have hit a home run on an item that's value is of that, how can you ask for a discount? I just pay the asking price, I like to sleep at night. bought a Confederate named wooden canteen like that, They asked $30.00 I paid it......Deals are out there. David


Pvt. James H. Honey 1st Md. Eastern shore Vol. Inf. Co. D (union) Gettysburg
Pvt. George Eddie Lear 26th Inf. Co.H 1st Div .(WW1) P.H. WIA Cpl. Richard Elsea 268th C.A. Bn. Battery A. WW2 SSgt. Grant Elsea 314th Inf. Hq.Co. I.R.79thDiv. WW2
Cpl. Harry Lawrence Butler Jr 23rd Regt. WIA Korea Lt. George Olin Tilghman 111th MG. 29th Div. WW1 DIS France 1919
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Great find, and a lesson they are still out there if you know how to look!

You are right, over the years I have made some great finds. The most important thing I can say is to read as much as you can about the areas that you have an interest in. KNOWLEDGE IS POWER.

 

Ron Norman

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wow! :o

wanting a ww1 usmc depot made first aid pouch

 

THIS MEMBER HAS BEEN BANNED FROM THE USMF ON NUMEROUS OCCASIONS: http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/206486-user-suspension-jackconaway/

 

IF YOU SEE AN ACCOUNT THAT YOU SUSPECT IS HIS PLEASE CONTACT AN ADMINISTRATOR. We will NOT tolerate someone who repeatedly violates the trust and rules that our forum stands for.

 

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Very nice! I'm jealous!

Semper Fidelis, to all Marines past, present and future..

*Remembering CWO3 James Warren Maddox, USMC 1957-2018*

LOOKING FOR EARLY USMC CHEVRONS & RANK INSIGNIA, COMPETITIVE MARKSMANSHIP AWARDS, RECRUITING MATERIALS AND POSTERS, PHOTOGRAPHS, PENNANTS, SIGNATURES, EARLY NUMBERED CAMPAIGN MEDALS, PRE-1900 USMC GOOD CONDUCT MEDAL, USMC ENGRAVED NAVY MARKSMANSHIP MEDAL, ANY MATERIALS RELATED TO 1ST BATTALION 9TH MARINES OR ANY OF THE THREE SHIPS BEARING THE NAME "USS MADDOX".


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That is a beautiful Naval Dirk, mid nineteenth and if it is not hallmarked probably American. Look close for a makers mark, If it is American it could be worth quite a bit of money.Here is a dirk that sold for $956.00

Inscribed Etched Blade American Silver Mounted Naval Dirk C. 1810. A known form generally associated with the Baltimore/Philadelphia area. 9 1/2" overall with 5 3/4" heavy double edged blade with median ridge. The blade is etched for 3/4 of its length with floral and scroll motifs. Blade generally smooth and gray with etching showing some wear. Elaborate all silver hilt with serrated edge on cross guard. Guard just slightly bent but no cracks or breaks, else the hilt is perfect with nice untouched dark patina. All silver scabbard with the obverse nearly covered by scroll engraving with frog stud decorated with floral rosette.

 

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That's one beautiful knife. I would have bought it for looks alone, not having a clue that it was a 19th century

dirk. I got lucky once buying a Knife Crafters knife just because it looked unique having a civil war sword blade. I got real happy when I found out what it was and realizing I got a great deal.

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