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Revolutionary or Civil War Horse Collar Breast Plate Help

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We were told this belonged to a US officer. It was purchased with several other spectacular pieces. It's in a very delicate state and moving it around too much will surely cause damage, so we haven't tried to look for a mark. Anyone recognize it? Thank you in advance for any help.







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I did not dig out any books so this is off the top and if way off just overlook the old guy. But is that a French Eagle around Napoleon era? Richard

Wanted: WWI ID'ed USMC Green Wool Uniform and ANYTHING documented to my Dad's Iwo Jima outfit: 21st Marines 3rd Div.

Items marked "Marquet, Marquett, or Marquette"







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Very interesting piece. The style of construction would date it 1840-50's. The eagle's origins dated back to the Roman Empire and was the symbol for the Roman Legion, same as the ruptured duck symbol found on U.S. WW2 uniforms. My thoughts from seeing French military trappings is that it is not nearly as elaborate as a French officers would be. The trimmings is very similar to American pre-civil war breast collars, however the eagle is some-what different. My guess that it could be a state militia piece who had quite a bit of more variety than federal trappings. The eagle is very European in style however it would not be the first time the U.S. has sported a Roman style Eagle, the U.S. Militia Bureau eagle is very Roman Empire in design. French eagles of the Republics were apt to incorporate the honey bee a key symbol for France. My opinion is it is American however breast collar plates, particular American are very rare from this period.




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Thank you all for such valuable information. We were told that the pieces we purchased, had been purchased by their Grandfather at a military auction many years ago. At that time, this piece was named to Ambrose Burnside. Of course, we have no paperwork or proof of that. I've done a few hours of research to try and find a close up of his horse wearing this piece, to no avail.

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  • 4 months later...

Nice ID on this one. If the construction isn't all French, it could well have been a Bannerman piece. I didn't see any French tack or horse-related items in the 1925 catalog I have, but it could explain how or if it came to be used in the US. Still, very nice piece--that eagle is stunning!






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