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Preserving the History of Antique American Swords


































Photo grouping courtesy of James D. Julia Auctioneers, Fairfield, Maine - www.jamesdjulia.com

Muster Rolls from the National Archives (NARA) show a Lieut. A.M. Clarke being captured at the Battle of Winchester and incarcerated at Berryville.

Lieutenant A. M. Clarke

Research shows that this sword could have belonged to one of two officers, however, without being able to glean more from the non-descriptive presentation, we are unable to assign the sword specifically.  The two officer candidates who share the initials "A.M." are as follows:


  1. Promoted to 2nd Lieutenant on July 27, 1863 with the 67th Pennsylvania Volunteers, Lieut. A.M. Clarke finished out the Civil War  with the rank of Captain.  He took part in numerous battles, including Hatcher's Run, Brandy Station, Cold Harbor, Petersburg, Wilderness, Cedar Creek, Middletown, Fisher's Hill, and more.  At the Battle of Winchester, Lieut. Clarke received a bullet to the ankle causing his capture and subsequent imprisonment in the infamous Libby Prison and Belle Island.  He received his promotions for gallant and meritorious conduct and a pension due to his being wounded.  He died suddenly in 1884. (Information from Part II of A Biographical Account of York County, Pennsylvania - Edited by John Gibson, 1886)
  2. Pictured at left: Lieutenant A.M. Clarke survived the Civil War and finished it out with the rank of Captain. The 9th had a total of  six officers killed or wounded and twenty-two enlisted men killed or mortally wounded in battle. 278 enlisted men died of accidents, disease, etc. (Information obtained from www.civilwardata.com, Historical Data Systems, Inc. - Photo from Massachusetts Commandery of Mollus)


Weyersberg Kings Head

Manufacturer's Mark

Note the clear, crisp etching of the Horstmann name.  There have been reproductions of these sword blades made.  The etched name on the reproduction blades are somewhat crudely done and lack this degree of crisp definition.

High Grade Silver Grip

Rarely seen on foot officer's sword, is this style of high quality engraved silver grip which was usually reserved for presentation Grade Staff & Field Officer's swords.  Note the quality engraving and finely executed presentation in the circle.

High Grade Horstmann Presentation Sword

M1850 Foot Officer's Sword


  • Rarely seen on this foot officer's sword is the fine silver engraved grip usually reserved for Staff & Field Officer's swords.
  • Presentation: "Presented to Lieut. A. M. Clarke by his company as a token of their confidence & respect"
  • Note the high amount of surviving gold gild.
  • Engraved rear guard
  • Shield on top scabbard mount is often blank. Note the  engraved American flag.
  • Sharkskin scabbard

(Below) Memorandum From Prisoner of War Records as from the National Archives.

The letter below reflects the sacrifice of absence a father and soldier pays in the service of his cause.  According to records from Ancestry.com, Lieutenant Clarke's child did, in fact, die.  Whether he was able to be there is unknown.

      Letter is a copy from the National Archives (NARA)