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1832 Infantry Sergeant's Belt

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Attached is an image of a scarce belt that sometimes goes unnoticed. Shortly after adopting the Roman style short sword for artillery, the army also adopted them for use by infantry sergeants. The difference in the two belts being the motif on one of the discs supporting the S-shaped clasp. The artillery belts had crossed cannons with a US; the infantry had stacked muskets. We tend to refer to them as NCO belts and swords, but they seem to have been restricted to sergeants only, not corporals.

The material is white buff leather, with a frog on the left and an adjusting buckle on right.

The disc pattern was changed in 1834 to a generic US and the belt itself was phased out starting in 1839 with the adoption of the 1840 pattern NCO sword (which, like this, was restricted to sergeants,) carried on a shoulder sling.

Robert Dingee supplied a lot of the belts and brass to the army. The disc pattern on this, however, does not match Dingee's and is thought to be either a version made for one of the states or a federal product from Allegany Arsenal.

See Campbell and O'Donnell for details on the plates.




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  • 7 months later...
  • 4 months later...

Is this in your collection?


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Amazing, early piece. Thanks for sharing!


Here is the artillery sword that I assume would be worn on this belt. This belongs to a family member of mine, and was used by a relative pre-Civil War.





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  • 3 weeks later...

MasonK: thanks for posting the photo of the short sword. Yes, that's the pattern they were using for infantry NCOs as well for during the period. Yours looks in great condition, particularly for a family piece- most such things got chewed up by kids playing with them over the generations.

Leatherneck72: I no longer have it. It was a nice piece to handle for a while though!

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I don't know who to compliment first. Steve, thanks for posting the photos of the belt I have never seen anything like that and it's great to be able to see such a rare, early piece. Mason that sword is fantastic. It looks as heavy and sturdy as the day it was made. The fact that it has a family connection makes it even better, thanks for posting those photos too. Both piece are just incredible. Thanks.



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So nice to see something used for such a short time and that old, THANKS!

You are his witness now, without a witness, they just disappear!

Quote from the movie TAKING CHANCE 2009








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  • 2 years later...

Just bumped into this. There is good photo information of Btty A, 1st. Ill. Lt Art. wearing these 1833 ames swords at Fort Defiance, Cairo, Ill. 1861.


Any chance you know of a place I can find that photo? A quick search didn’t turn anything up unless I over looked it.

Be well,


Chad C. Rogers

Retired Army

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