This sharkskin grip exhibits appropriate age distress. The diamond shaped skin nodules are worn-down white from handling on the raised areas. Note this sword has "triple-wire". There is a fine copper wrapped wire flanked either side by single strand wire. From a distance, this may be overlooked. It was a common practice of Horstmann to triple-wire his grips on officer's swords.
The scabbard of this sword is browned. The brass mounts are well made with the midrib patterned around the entire mount. Ring mounts and scabbard drag evidence honest consistent wear one would expect to find from daily use.
The blade on this sword survives in very good condition. Much of the frosting and original luster survives. This blade has a higher quality etching and pattern as seen on some standard Horstmann Foot Officer's swords. Note the Weyersberg Kings head stamped on the ricasso below the Horstmann name.
Although similar in styling to the Ames guard, note the circus lettering utilized for the US. This style of guard and lettering has been reproduced, so it is advisable to show caution when purchasing one of these style swords. This Horstmann guard also lacks rosettes which are seen on the Ames guard.
Horstmann & Sons was one of the premier makers of American swords. While not in the same collector's league as Ames, they are highly desirable and well sought after by collectors.
Although Horstmann assembled swords, the blades used were primarily produced by Weyersberg. This is evidenced by the commonly seen kings-head stamped on the base of Horstmann swords.