Rare Confederate Leech & Rigdon Staff and Field Officer’s Sword Columbus, Mississippi
Rare Confederate Leech & Rigdon Staff and Field Officer’s Sword Columbus, Mississippi - Leech & Rigdon made two variants of this “Floating CS” sword; according to famed authority, William Albaugh, as depicted in his book on Confederate swords, he felt that both were the products of unknown makers. More up to date research now indicates, with the aid of much more information, that these swords were Leech & Rigdon products. This Leech & Rigdon floating “CS” field & staff officer’s swords is one of the rarer patterns produced by the firm. This particular example has the “CS” between the first and second branch of the guard. The unstopped fuller blade is 30 ½”; the overall length of the sword is 37″ with the original leather washer. The pommel is plain, notched where the knucklebow is adapted to the pommel. This particular sword had been an element of a long established collection and was obtained from William Albaugh, many years ago. The blade is in wonderful condition, indicative of it once having its original scabbard, not that long ago; unfortunately, the scabbard is no longer with the sword.
CONDITION: Blade is gray/bright with no pitting or oxidation. The grip is in very good condition and retains all of its original, brass twisted wire. The hilt and guard branches are pleasingly patinated with some minor nicks and scratches. Overall, this sword is in superior, untouched condition.
Thomas Leech produced a wide variety of military accessories that were supplied to the Confederate Government as well as private individuals. Leech began his company under the name of “Memphis Novelty Works”. Later when the firm relocated to Columbus, MS, the name was changed to “Novelty Works.” Leech partnered with Charles H. Rigdon to begin the production of .36 caliber pistols of the Colt pattern in addition to swords, knives, military accessories. At that time, the firm name was changed to “Leech & Rigdon.” The firm continued to operate in Columbus until the late fall of 1862 when they relocated along with the CSA Briarfield Arsenal to Selma, Alabama. Not long afterward the firm again relocated to Georgia, where they discontinued production of swords, concentrating their efforts on manufacture of .36 caliber revolvers.