Once in the incredible collection of the late Fred Edmunds, this example has the finest known etched blade extant for this pattern of Confederate officer sword. Complete and original in all respects, with equally rare brass mounted leather scabbard.
This is a rare Confederate sword commonly known as a Leech and Rigdon Officer pattern, although some experts feel it could have been manufactured by Louis Bissonnet of Mobile, Alabama. In either case, this is about the finest known example existing today in the entire world. The frosty etching retains 95%+ original bright, crisp lines and the grip and scabbard are near flawless. This example would be impossible to upgrade beyond so if you want the BEST one known, look no more. This fine Rebel sword was once in the collection of Joseph Murphy and later Fred Edmunds (Confederate States Armory Museum, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania).
Thomas Leech & Charles Rigdon began sword production in Memphis, Tennessee in early 1861. Production only lasted a few months as Federal forces closed in on the city. The sword manufactory was moved to Columbus, Mississippi and the Briarfield Arsenal where Charles Rigdon’s pistol making skills were added to the line of products.
Original Leech & Rigdon’s will occasionally be encountered with acid etched blades in a floral motif with an arrow and C.S. The brass guards always show signs of sand casting and bits of dirt in the casting between the flowers of the brass guard. Some are found to be very crudely cast. As the war progressed and the quality of the available brass went down, later examples appeared with a reddish tint to the brass. The Confederate Government contracted with Leech & Rigdon for war materials primarily intended for use by the western Confederate army (the Army of Tennessee) which included forces primarily from Tennessee, Arkansas, Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, North & South Carolina and Georgia.