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Don K




Location: Missouri
Joined: 05 Sep 2014

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri 05 Sep, 2014 6:41 pm    Post subject: Need Help Identifying a Sword         Reply with quote

I purchased a ceremonial sword at an auction and need help identifying it. I was told by the owner that his father brought it home from Europe at the end of WWII. I found that it was manufactured by AMES Manufacturing Co., Chicopee, Mass. The inscription on the scabbard is "Be thou faithful unto death / give thee a crown of life" which surrounds a crown with a Red colored Cross inside of it tilted to the right. The name on reverse side of the plate on the scabbard is M V Follett.

I tried to upload a picture of the sword and scabbard but it was too large for this site. Please email me at deonk69@netscape.net and I'll send you the picture (less than 800KB).

I'll appreciate any assistance you can offer.
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Fri 05 Sep, 2014 6:52 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Don,

Why not shrink the image and then attach it? You can even do this in MS Paint if you have no other photo editing software.
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Lewis A.




Location: United States
Joined: 18 Jul 2010

Posts: 75

PostPosted: Fri 05 Sep, 2014 7:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Need Help Identifying a Sword         Reply with quote

Don K wrote:
I purchased a ceremonial sword at an auction and need help identifying it. I was told by the owner that his father brought it home from Europe at the end of WWII. I found that it was manufactured by AMES Manufacturing Co., Chicopee, Mass. The inscription on the scabbard is "Be thou faithful unto death / give thee a crown of life" which surrounds a crown with a Red colored Cross inside of it tilted to the right. The name on reverse side of the plate on the scabbard is M V Follett.

I tried to upload a picture of the sword and scabbard but it was too large for this site. Please email me at deonk69@netscape.net and I'll send you the picture (less than 800KB).

I'll appreciate any assistance you can offer.


It sounds like a Masonic sword.

The Ames Manufacturing Company of Chicopee, Massachusetts, was founded by a colonial American blacksmith, Capt. John Ames in 1774, and originally produced utilitarian implements such as shovels, but expanded their production line to include swords and other military armaments in the 19th century. Following the American Civil War, the company continued to specialize in making swords for fraternal organizations such as the Freemasons, the Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias, and other civic orders.

The tilted cross within a crown is a symbol used by the Freemasons and relates to the medieval Knights Templars who the Masons claim a symbolic if not historic link to.
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Sat 06 Sep, 2014 1:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

For help in resizing photos including links to online tools to do it for you, visit our INFO pages linked in the forum nav bar above.
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Don K




Location: Missouri
Joined: 05 Sep 2014

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat 06 Sep, 2014 2:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here is the photo of the sword I wanted to post, minus the end of the handle which had a Knight's helmet on it. I hope this helps. I will upload other photos of the scabbards distinctive characteristics tomorrow as I am short on time today to do so.

Lewis A. Thanks for the information based on my description. Appreciate your help.

Craig Peters, thanks for the tip on shrinking the image.

Don



 Attachment: 320.58 KB
sword a.jpg

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Lewis A.




Location: United States
Joined: 18 Jul 2010

Posts: 75

PostPosted: Sat 06 Sep, 2014 2:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Don K wrote:
Here is a photo of the sword...

Craig Peters, thanks for the tip on shrinking the image.

Don


It's a Masonic sword, looks to be late 19th century. Ames Mfr. Co. offered a lot of customization features on their swords - hilt, pommel, guard, scabbard furniture, and blade etching could all be selected from a wide range of stock options. If you could find one of their old catalogs, you could probably find the individual components that were used in making that sword.

I've seen Masonic swords similar to yours selling in the $85-$195 price range. Depending on the condition of the sword and the rarity and quality of the components on it, some of them can sell for quite a bit more, but given the fact that being a Freemason was almost as common as being a husband or a father in the 19th century, these types of swords aren't rare.
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Glen A Cleeton




Location: Nipmuc USA
Joined: 21 Aug 2003

Posts: 1,906

PostPosted: Sat 06 Sep, 2014 6:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Lewis, all.

Not to seem pendantic but the Ames information is incorrect "Cpt John Ames", operated in Bridgewater. The Ames Shovel Co. had nothing to do with. the Ames Sword Co. aside from a familial relationship generations removed.

Nathan Ames senior of Chelmsford/Lowell was the man leading to the Ames Manufacturing Company not realized until Nathan Junior and James moved to Chicopee in 1829. A brief paragraph of Sr here. There is bad info even in that article about the fire(s).
http://lowelllandtrust.org/greenwayclassroom/...erMill.pdf

A nice Sunday morning coffee read here
http://newenglandtravels.blogspot.com/2009/03...l-war.html

I have some titles on my Googlebooks shelf that go further into the Lowell/Chelmsford area and genealogical research on the Ames families but John Hamilton's history of the Ames Sword Co will also show the same timeline of Sr and Jr. There was another John, as father of Nathan senior.

Not at all surprising is that there was another of Ames kin processing iron in Connecticut. The Ames arrival in America is a interesting story of growth from the early 17th century.

~~~~~~~~~~~

Sometines it is easier to date the sword by the owner's name but this one more likely to be the 1900s, up to about 1925 when Ames was bought by Lilley. It appears to be a 33rd degree Scottish Rite Templar sword but I'll check in the Hamilton. Marino and Kaplan fraternal sword book. I am not quickly finding an obit for M V Follet

Cheers

GC

Looking at the latest bible for these, it is a style more often associated with Royal Arch than Scottish Rite. I am assuming the obverse with the folding guard will show a Maltese type cross. From the book examples, more of this grip type were white eminent commanders, with the black grip example a captain general. At any rate and in either Freemason faction, up in the rankings.
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Don K




Location: Missouri
Joined: 05 Sep 2014

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sun 07 Sep, 2014 9:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here is another photo of the scabbard's adornment. I'll post two more.


 Attachment: 344.33 KB
This figure is below the Crown with tilted cross on the scabbard.. [ Download ]
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Don K




Location: Missouri
Joined: 05 Sep 2014

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sun 07 Sep, 2014 9:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here is a photo of the Guard and shoulder detail


 Attachment: 272.3 KB
Guard and Shoulder detail [ Download ]
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Don K




Location: Missouri
Joined: 05 Sep 2014

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sun 07 Sep, 2014 10:06 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Lastly, detail of the blade etching.


 Attachment: 301.29 KB
Detail of the blade's etching on both sides [ Download ]
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