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J.D. Crawford




Location: Toronto
Joined: 25 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Fri 14 Nov, 2014 6:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:
J.D. Crawford wrote:

I must admit: I have mixed feelings about private collection of ancient archeological pieces - they belong to the world IMHO. That's why I have no interest in collecting them personally. It would be great to share this some day, perhaps by loaning it to a museum for analysis and/or display. But that's just me.


Doug,

I actually agree with you on this. Swords belong to the people. But the problem with museums is that swords mostly sit behind thick panes of glass in their display case. People walk by, glance at the sword for a few seconds, and off they go. Or, in some cases, they stare longingly at the sword that is separated from them in its glass prison cell.

I realize why museums do this: they are trying to preserve the sword for as long as humanly possible. But swords are meant to be held, meant to be experienced. That's where the magic is. So part of my long term vision is to establish some sort of institute where people can come and actually view and handle swords, a place for collectors and enthusiasts to be able to actually experience swords. I realize that there are issues of safety that must be considered. Surely, however, if thousands of WMA guys can get together worldwide and handle sharp modern swords along with blunts with safety for the most part, there must be a way where my idea can work.


It would be great if you could make that happen. I would come visit.

It would also be great if you could get a professional to fully catalog it for publication while its in your hands. With luck and good care these objects will still be around another thousand years from now and may pass through many hands. But swords have a way of disappearing. For example, all those 'current whereabouts unknown' swords in Records of the Medieval Sword.
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Tim Lison




Location: Chicago, Illinois
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PostPosted: Fri 14 Nov, 2014 5:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very, very cool pick up Craig! This is a really nice sword. I love the tapered fuller. I have always wanted a reproduction with a similar fuller, seeing this makes me want one more! I hope you decide to have a reproduction of this sword made to sit next to the original. If you ever decide to make "Craig's Parlor of Medieval Swords for Handling" a reality, I will be first in line to swing this sword! Most excellent!
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Jussi Ekholm




Location: Tampere, Finland
Joined: 16 Jun 2004
Reading list: 38 books

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PostPosted: Sun 16 Nov, 2014 1:08 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very nice sword Craig.

As a private collector I think that private collecting gives very much back to the community, and people actually have good chances to see the swords. Yes it's amazing that we have swords in museums around the world but only a fraction of the museums collections are on display.

I think that Japanese sword collecting has much tighter knit community than European sword collecting in general. Being a part of one of the groups I might be too much involved to see things clearly but that is how I feel. Countries have sword collecting clubs & organizations and people are very welcoming. For Example NBTHK is a Japanese organization but it has branches in Europe and US. I have been to few Scandinavian NBTHK meetings and I got to see and handle some great stuff there. And I will travel to more NBTHK branch meetings in the future. You get to view impressive antique weaponry in your own hands.

We also have our own collector group here in Finland where we have couple of us nihonto collectors grouped together over the counrty. We are trying to get people to see real Japanese swords here in Finland. But one example about Museum storage comes right here. We had a Samurai exhibition visiting Finland and it was on display at our National museum. On theme day people from our group were giving lectures about the Japanese sword and some were doing martial arts demonstrations. As the travelling exhibition did not have any actual swords, only koshirae, we made an enquiry if the National museum might get couple Japanese swords from their warehouses to display in the museums weapon room (they couldn't be added to exhibition as it was total package). However byrocracy goes slow and there were never Japanese swords on display in the weapon room... I have been told that National museum has maybe 20-30 Japanese swords and they were last documented sometime in the 80's before I was even born. They are just kept in the warehouse and nobody can see them... Our group has asked if it would be possible to see some of the swords, but byrocracy seems to be very slow... This is just the fate of the Japanese swords in the collection, there are much more European swords stored in various museum storages here in Finland.

We held our own collectors meeting in National museum during the time exhibition was on display. Unfortunately due to having many live antique blades around we couldn't have it open to public (safety concerns etc.) but our own members got to see and handle the stuff.



For example this was our main theme of the meeting and these are tanto from the late 1500's
left to right
Kanemoto, Shimada Sukemune, den Shimada Sukemune, Kanefusa - and kantei blade which was Osafune Kiyomitsu

And last year we held our own Samurai exhibition in Jyväskylä on the dojo of one of the members. That was open to the public over the weekend and people could see pretty impressive stuff there (swords, spears, samurai armor etc.). After lectures and demonstrations on the opening day there was kantei that was open to anyone. So anyone from the public could hold an antique sword in his hands and got guidance to what to look for. Couple attendees took this opportunity, unfortunately not that many were keen on it. If I remember correctly it was a Yamato blade from Nambokucho period (1333-1392), I guessed it to be little later so I missed the period slightly. Happy A pic from the event.



And we are having another event in this January where authentic swords can be seen alongside with amazing lineup of koryu demonstrations. Happy

This is medieval too: Made by Kuninobu, most likely an unknown smith as province or details apart from Nambokucho Period are not mentioned. Sword is machi-okuri which means the shoulders of the blade have been moved forward. That is not desirable and it has some flaws but this is a signed tachi from Nambokucho period, and my treasure.




So while this post might seem a bit like off-topic rambling my idea is to encourage Craig to make that long term vision a reality in the future. It's an awesome idea in my opinion. For example you might get to meet another collector who has also an Oakeshott XI with Brazil nut, but swords might end up being totally different when you get to compare them side by side. Happy Getting likeminded folk to gather up and share thoughts about swords is always great fun. I'm keeping my thumbs up you antique European sword collectors will get together more.

Jussi Ekholm
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Lafayette C Curtis




Location: Indonesia
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PostPosted: Mon 17 Nov, 2014 1:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I thought the Oakeshott Institute has been trying to do this for years. Maybe Craig (Johnson) from A&A can update us on what they're up to right now.
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Eric S




Location: new orleans
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PostPosted: Mon 17 Nov, 2014 3:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:

Doug,

I actually agree with you on this. Swords belong to the people. But the problem with museums is that swords mostly sit behind thick panes of glass in their display case. People walk by, glance at the sword for a few seconds, and off they go. Or, in some cases, they stare longingly at the sword that is separated from them in its glass prison cell.

In my experience the vast majority of items owned by museums are not even on display, they are hidden away from view in some sort of storage, most museums do not even have adequate photographs of the items they own that are not on display.
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Eric S




Location: new orleans
Joined: 22 Nov 2009
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PostPosted: Mon 17 Nov, 2014 3:42 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jussi Ekholm wrote:

As a private collector I think that private collecting gives very much back to the community, and people actually have good chances to see the swords. Yes it's amazing that we have swords in museums around the world but only a fraction of the museums collections are on display.

I have been told that National museum has maybe 20-30 Japanese swords and they were last documented sometime in the 80's before I was even born. They are just kept in the warehouse and nobody can see them... Our group has asked if it would be possible to see some of the swords, but byrocracy seems to be very slow... This is just the fate of the Japanese swords in the collection, there are much more European swords stored in various museum storages here in Finland.

Jussi, your right, I am afraid that museums are not always the answer when it comes to swords, we have more chance to see privately owned ones even if it is only when the current owner dies and the sword is auctioned off to a new owner.

Quote:
We held our own collectors meeting in National museum during the time exhibition was on display. Unfortunately due to having many live antique blades around we couldn't have it open to public (safety concerns etc.) but our own members got to see and handle the stuff.

Your orginization did a great job, it is very difficult bringing like minded people together for this type of event.

Quote:
This is medieval too: Made by Kuninobu, most likely an unknown smith as province or details apart from Nambokucho Period are not mentioned. Sword is machi-okuri which means the shoulders of the blade have been moved forward. That is not desirable and it has some flaws but this is a signed tachi from Nambokucho period, and my treasure.

Since most surviving swords from this time period (Nambokucho 1334 to 1392) have been radically cut down in size, I do not think that machi-okuri is that much of a flaw, most people looking for an uncut example would easily over look this, I certainly would.
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Kai Lawson




Location: Madison, WI
Joined: 26 Aug 2010
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PostPosted: Mon 17 Nov, 2014 10:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I would just like to say that the showcasing of non-western arms in addition to western arms really helps broaden and diversify the information base present on this site. Thank you to all who do so for your posts, pictures and knowledge!
"And they crossed swords."
--William Goldman, alias S. Morgenstern
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Craig Johnson
Industry Professional



Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA
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PostPosted: Mon 17 Nov, 2014 10:27 am    Post subject: Oak HSDP progress         Reply with quote

Lafayette C Curtis wrote:
I thought the Oakeshott Institute has been trying to do this for years. Maybe Craig (Johnson) from A&A can update us on what they're up to right now.


Hi Lafayette

Yes we have been working away at this project. Our efforts are formulated around Ewart's guidance to make info available when we can and to create a secure source for collectors concerned about their items to share the info with no indicator where it resides for safety. As we deal with quite a few folks who own originals we strive to provide them with the anonymity they desire.

The project is still very much in a data collection and archiving phase. The publicly available info is being added as we have time and the sorting of contributed info is ongoing. We have not pushed to hard for more as we are trying to be very careful making good records and accurate data entry and there are only so many hours in a day :-)

We do encourage anyone to contribute and/or use our suggested format for recording a sword. This was designed with the concept more info is better but sometimes one only has a short time with a piece so we strive to get what we can when we can. Some folks online have made even more accurate recordings and that is great, but we strive to make it workable for most folks. We are going to update this format shortly with a few tweeks.

The Oakeshott HSDP Proj


Best
Craig
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Neil Melville




Location: Scotland
Joined: 27 Oct 2009

Posts: 192

PostPosted: Thu 20 Nov, 2014 8:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Craig P.
I've just seen this thread and love the sword you have just bought. I have checked the catalogue of the sale and it states that the weight is 986 grams. Hope this is useful. I noticed several more pretty gorgeous swords in that sale, at some pretty fabulous prices.
Neil

N Melville
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Thu 20 Nov, 2014 4:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks Neil.
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Neil Melville




Location: Scotland
Joined: 27 Oct 2009

Posts: 192

PostPosted: Sat 22 Nov, 2014 5:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig, I have sent you an email with details you wanted. Let me know if it doesn't arrive.
Neil

N Melville
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