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  #1  
Old 08-06-2019, 03:07 AM
texn texn is offline
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Default Need some input on Civil War battlefield relics

I am new to the forum and to hobby, but have learned quite a bit in the recent months. I hope yall have some patience with me as I go through all of this stuff.

I live on a privately owned ranch where a small civil war battle took place in Texas. The terrain is very rocky with a lot of vegetation etc. I have researched the battle quite a bit from the books written on it and have finally started to pinpoint the general area the conflict occurred. I still have a lot more ground to cover. Some of the items I have found are still a mystery to me and thought yall might have some suggestions on what they are.


Below are what I believe are .52 caliber Sharps Carbine - possible Richmond Labs. The weights are a tiny bit off as well as the length, but the tips of the bullets are a little flattened it appears. I assume the bullets would be be much flatter if actually fired, but it does appear the tips have some damage to them. I assume they are drops.



close to the bullets above I found this pocket knife. Not much information to go with on it except its old.




A little ways away I found this broken piece. Its heavy and thick. Not sure about this.


Same story here. Not sure.



This piece looks as though it could be part of a weapon, but I dont see where it would fit in.



This looks as though it could be part of a curry comb for horses or perhaps part of suspender adjustment tab. Not sure.



This part is definitely a tool for either weapons or something. Its basically a slot screwdriver large and small hand tool. The ends are exactly the same as a screw driver.



This is a buckle obviously, but I am not sure to what.


In another location of the battlefield area I found 12 different musket balls that appear to be .45 and .60 caliber. I located all of them within a 4 ft area. Someone dropped their ammo or was killed there I assume. The balls are not perfectly round by any means but dont appear to be fired either. In the same small area I found several priming caps. Some appear to be used while others looked new..or unused anyway.
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  #2  
Old 08-06-2019, 03:10 AM
texn texn is offline
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I searched the relic cleaning forum, but was unsure what type of cleaning the pocket knife would fall under. How would you guys go about gently cleaning the pocket knife? Or at least getting some of the dirt and rust off of it.... Thanks in advance.
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  #3  
Old 08-06-2019, 10:41 AM
waltr waltr is offline
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The wavy piece with the notches is used to join two boards and could be modern since they are still available.

Do the unknown item stick to a magnet????
If yes then they are iron/steel and could be any age.

Remember that they can be modern junk mixed in so not every thing will be mid-1800's.

The bullets look early but I'll let someone that knows more ID these.

Neat looking pocket knife. Not sure how early folding pocket knifes around in the US but thinking late 1800's (if so them not civil war). Try cleaning the brass parts looking for any markings.
The steel can be de-rusted by several methods. Read the threads in the "cleaning" sub-forum.
It looks to be brass with steel blades? So take this into account when reading about cleaning methods.

The buckle is impossible to date since that design was for many decades and is still used.

You have some interesting finds and since these are possibly from a Civil War engagement their exact location and context should be recorded and the information passed on to a local Historical group.
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  #4  
Old 08-07-2019, 12:55 AM
texn texn is offline
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Originally Posted by waltr View post
The wavy piece with the notches is used to join two boards and could be modern since they are still available.

Do the unknown item stick to a magnet????
If yes then they are iron/steel and could be any age.

Remember that they can be modern junk mixed in so not every thing will be mid-1800's.

The bullets look early but I'll let someone that knows more ID these.

Neat looking pocket knife. Not sure how early folding pocket knifes around in the US but thinking late 1800's (if so them not civil war). Try cleaning the brass parts looking for any markings.
The steel can be de-rusted by several methods. Read the threads in the "cleaning" sub-forum.
It looks to be brass with steel blades? So take this into account when reading about cleaning methods.

The buckle is impossible to date since that design was for many decades and is still used.

You have some interesting finds and since these are possibly from a Civil War engagement their exact location and context should be recorded and the information passed on to a local Historical group.
Appreciate the input. There were many folding pocket knives during the civil war. From the look of the aging, it definitely appears old. No markings on it from what I can see. The side plates may have had some but they are long gone. There is actually a large dent on the side of the knife. Something mustíve struck it very hard at some point.
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  #5  
Old 08-07-2019, 01:39 PM
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Jeff in Georgia Jeff in Georgia is online now
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Think the forth item from the bottom is a "wedge" used to secure a wooden handle onto a hammer or ax head.

Or these were sometimes used to join two pieces of wood together.
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  #6  
Old 08-09-2019, 05:07 PM
Thapco Thapco is offline
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The 8th pic with the "L" shaped object looks like a nipple wrench and screwdriver combo. Used with cap and ball revolvers. the shorter end should have a slotted hole in it to go over a nipple and unscrew it or install it
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  #7  
Old 08-12-2019, 06:13 PM
texn texn is offline
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Originally Posted by Thapco View post
The 8th pic with the "L" shaped object looks like a nipple wrench and screwdriver combo. Used with cap and ball revolvers. the shorter end should have a slotted hole in it to go over a nipple and unscrew it or install it
Thanks for the input. Yes both ends are definitely the exact shape for a large and small screwdriver. Cap and ball revolvers were definitely said to be used in the battle so that makes sense. Thanks again for your helpful information.
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  #8  
Old 08-12-2019, 06:14 PM
texn texn is offline
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Is there a civil war artifact book that any of you would suggest that would identify most relics that I would come across?
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  #9  
Old 08-12-2019, 06:23 PM
ncplumber ncplumber is offline
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That knife is unique, and one that can probably be identified. It has enclosed backsprings which is quite rare, and it likely had split pearl scales. The divider down the center was used so that smaller pieces of pearl could be used as knife handles so they wouldn't go to waste. Remington made one in the 20's but yours is much older. I would suspect it was a Sheffield made knife.
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  #10  
Old 08-13-2019, 02:36 AM
texn texn is offline
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Originally Posted by ncplumber View post
That knife is unique, and one that can probably be identified. It has enclosed backsprings which is quite rare, and it likely had split pearl scales. The divider down the center was used so that smaller pieces of pearl could be used as knife handles so they wouldn't go to waste. Remington made one in the 20's but yours is much older. I would suspect it was a Sheffield made knife.
Is there anything more on knife that would help ID? I can take more pictures and post them
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  #11  
Old 08-13-2019, 04:34 PM
ncplumber ncplumber is offline
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Maybe a picture looking down into the body of the knife. It is a 4 blade knife ?
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  #12  
Old 08-13-2019, 08:47 PM
texn texn is offline
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Originally Posted by ncplumber View post
Maybe a picture looking down into the body of the knife. It is a 4 blade knife ?
Yes it appears to be a 4 blade knife. All of the blades appear to have broken or rusted apart at some point in time. There is quite the dent on the side of the knife. Thanks for taking the time to check it out. I fear that I have been bitten by the digging bug. lol
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  #13  
Old 08-13-2019, 08:56 PM
texn texn is offline
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I went out in the area this past weekend and found a few more items. None of which I am sure what they are. I will post pictures in this post. Is there a consensus on the best civil war relic book that identifies many of these things? I havent really seen much about them, but a book would be a great help.

First is some type of horse shoe shaped item..or perhaps a "C". The triangular points looks like some type of push pins that you might use to secure it to a hat or coat for a decorative or identifying purpose. It might also be part of a turkey reed call, however, I have never seen a metal one like this. Any thoughts?

The next piece has me confused. It is not magnetic and did not register on the detector at all. I just happened to see it on the ground and noticed that its shape is not something you normally see in nature. It is quite light...but very hard. I am lost on that one.
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Last edited by texn; 08-15-2019 at 02:23 PM.
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