Sword Presented to Frank Wheaton

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Description (Brief)
Presented to Brevet Major General Frank Wheaton by the State of Rhode Island through Governor James Y. Smith, January 1865
Presented to Frank Wheaton by the state of Rhode Island in 1865, the blade of this sword is long, straight, and double edged. It is decorated in gold and silver chasing on both sides. The obverse features a "US" monogram and a US shield of arms, while the reverse features an eagle, a face, and a cluster of military trophies. Both sides are also heavily decorated in floral and scroll patterns. The grip of the sword is a woman, perhaps Columbia or Nike, wearing a toga with her right arm raised; originally her right hand held a laurel wreath. There are two stars on her toga. The sword lacks a pommel and knuckle guard. There are two quillons and a counterguard. The smaller quillon is a simple scroll shape, while the larger quillon extends half way up the hilt, and is the same height as the woman figure's waist. This quillon features a very large purple amethyst, surrounded by casts of four cherubs. The counterguard bears a large blue enamel medallion with the initials "FW" cast in the center. The medallion is surrounded by a large laurel wreath and ribbon.
The scabbard has three gold mounts. The first mount features the seal of Rhode Island on the obverse and a dagger between laurel leaves on the reverse. The second bears a medieval trophy of arms on the obverse and a shield inscribed with the monogram "US" on the reverse. The third mount bears a spray of oak leaves on both sides. Between the second and third mounts is the inscription “BREVET MAJOR GENERAL FRANK WHEATON U.S.V. / For gallant and meritorious service during the war, and especially in the battles of / OPEQUAN, FISHERS HILL AND MIDDLETOWN / BY / The State of Rhode Island THROUGH James Y. Smith Governor, / in conformity with a RESOLUTION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY passed at its Jan'y Session / A.D. 1865” The scabbard has three carrying rings, one on each side of the first mount, and one on the right side of the second mount.
Currently not on view
date made
ca 1865
associated date
Wheaton, Frank
Collins & Co.
place made
United States: Connecticut, Hartford
presented by/ in
United States: Rhode Island
United States: Virginia
Physical Description
metal, gilt (scabbard material)
steel (blade material)
metal (hilt material)
blade: 32 7/8 in x 1 in; 83.5025 cm x 2.54 cm
scabbard: 33 1/8 in x 3 1/2 in; 84.1375 cm x 8.89 cm
overall: 40 in x 7 3/4 in; 101.6 cm x 19.685 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Maria B. Wheaton
Edged Weapons
Civil War
related event
Civil War
See more items in
Armed Forces History: Armed Forces History, Military
Civil War Presentation Swords
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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