American Socket Bayonet Scabbards circa 1855 to 1900

 

In 1855 the American military decided on a new Bayonet for all services this was the 1855, this remained in service until they replaced it with the 1873 which used the same pattern bayonet with a smaller socket. During this period there were a number of different patterns of scabbards used, by both the military and militia units. This page covers examples of many of these, either in my collection or provided by other collectors and dealers. The reference numbers are those used by Robert M. Reilly in his book on American Socket Bayonets and Scabbards, which is the definitive work on the subject at this time.

The 1855 scabbard consisted of a stitched leather with a brass chape and an attached belt loop attached by a frog 2, 3, 7, or 8 rivets or in an all a stitched version.

1855 Type II frog
The first scabbards came with an all stitched frog, this one has been roughly repaired and I think the throat stitching is incorrect and should not be a Blanket stitch.


1855 TYPE III 2 Rivet frog S52
Modern reproduction


1855 TYPE III 3 Rivet scabbard S57
Modern reproduction

 

1855 TYPE III 7 Rivet scabbard S
Seven rivet frog version of the 1855 leather scabbards 

 

1855 TYPE III 8 Rivet scabbard S54
Eight rivet scabbard version of the 1855 leather scabbards 
S123 in Reilly this scabbard was made for the Peabody-Martini bayonet made in the late 1870's. Most of these were supplied to Turkey but some were used by Navy and National Guard unites during WWI.
Russia Mosin Nagant.jpg (51639 bytes) Reproduction 8 rivet scabbard on an 1855 made for re-enactors.

 

Martini Peabody 8 Rivet scabbard S123
S123 in Reilly this scabbard was made for the Peabody-Martini bayonet made in the late 1870's. Most of these were supplied to Turkey but some were used by Navy and National Guard unites during WWI.

 

HOFFMAN 1st Pattern Scabbard   
1st pattern of the Hoffman swivel made at Waterville Arsenal this gave a  full 360 degree rotation to the scabbard and attachment which was found to be unacceptable it allowed. This uses twin tongues to hold the steel scabbard to the leather frog. Neither of the tongues has a rivet as used in the 1873 pattern scabbards. there is no brass rosette
HOFFMAN 2nd Pattern Scabbard   
2nd pattern of the Hoffman swivel made at Waterville Arsenal this was a modification of the 1st pattern to prevent the full 360 degree rotation it allowed. This uses twin tongues to hold the steel scabbard to the leather frog. Neither of the tongues has a rivet as used in the 1873 pattern scabbards. there is no brass rosette

 

1851 Cadet Scabbard  
Interesting bayonet this a split ring in which a stud fits to lock the socket to the rifle

 

Cadet Steel Scabbard  
This cadet scabbard includes an additional belt loop stud that takes a strap the end of the strap appears to be broken and I am not sure

 

Militia Scabbard  
Basically similar to the 1851 above, this one has standard eagle headed buttons to hold the cross belt.

 

For the 1873 bayonet the scabbard was changed to a folded steel scabbard with a frog attached by a rivet at the throat. There were several variations of the tabs and the rivet positions over the production period of the scabbard. Additionally there were several variations to the swivel, and the belt attachment method, including for some militia units attachment methods for shoulder straps.

1873 Scabbard rosettes

The issue 1873 scabbards came with a swivel connecting the belt loop with the scabbard frog. Military issue came with U.S, USN or USMC, Militia units came with a a variety of different marks on the front of the swivel. Scabbards were also supplied with a blank brass disk to be marked at the unit level.


Blank - Sold to be marked by purchasing unit, comes in large and small sizes.
Ancient & Honorable Artillery Co Mass - Militia unit

A unknown
GAR  - Grand Army of the Republic
Fraternity rosette)
GCC
Georgetown College Cadets (MD or KY)
IND Indiana
KSG
for Kentucky (formerly thought to be Kansas) State Guard
MASS Massachusetts
MG Morris Guards (NJ)
NC North Carolina NG National Guard (location unknown)
NGP for National Guard Pennsylvania
NG for National Guard
NJ for New Jersey two versions
OHIO Ohio (state troops)
RIM for Rhode Island Militia
US US Army with and without a period between the U and the S
USMC Marine Corps
USN for the US Navy

 Red shows rosettes owned

   

1873 NJ Button S93/S93a

New Jersey button on 1873 scabbard
top NJ is 31/32" in diameter as opposed to 63/64" for the lower, but has obvious differences in the font that are easier to  differentiate the two variations


1873 MASS Button S 89

Massachusetts button on 1873 scabbard uses the McKenny throat so was made in the 1880's

 

1873 USN S98
USN button on 1873 scabbard, these are made slightly differently than the other scabbards


1873 U.S Button S84
U.S button on 1873 scabbard, this scabbard has been fitted with hooks to go on a later web belt

 

1873 US Button S85
US button on later made1873 scabbard, makers mark is on the reverse of the back. Note there is no dot between the U and the S.


1873 Large Plain rosette S96
 Has added wire hooks to allow the bayonet to be fitted to later web belts 

 

1873 NGP Marked S92
NGP, National Guard Pennsylvania, uses a central rivet to attach to the scabbard 


1873 RIM S94
RIM, Rhode Island Militia, uses a central rivet to attach to the scabbard 


1873 Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company S86
Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company  is the oldest military organization still in operation in the US, used an Honor guard for the state. The unit was originally formed in 1638

 

Central Rivet Scabbard
Scabbard missing the hanger with central location for rivet 

 

Off Center Rivet Scabbard
Scabbard  with off center location for rivet 

 

1873 brass hanger S112
Brass hanger version of 1873 scabbard, these were made later than the more normally found leather hanger versions. Made after 1880 they were issued when a unit had the correct belts etc for them, they did nor replace the leather hangers.

 

Dress Buff frog S114
Reportedly from New York. uses a plain front rosette and a circular washer rather than the early petaled ones. Throat is the 1886 McKenny patent one 

 

Prairie Scabbard S111
One of the last issue scabbards  used by the cavalry, uses a single hook riveted to the throat of the scabbard.

 

BANNERMAN Cadet
Total length =  mm   Blade length = mmBlade width =mm MRD = mm
Bannerman cadet bayonet 16" scabbard

 

Shoulder Belt Suspension Swivel Mounted S73
Reilly suggests that this was an experimental mounting system, as it was made after the abandonment of shoulder belts in the 1830' and 40's. The brass swivel allowed the bayonet to be mounted on a shoulder hanger but still allowed for 135degrees of rotation while mounted.. There are no marks to indicate maker etc.  on this item.

 

Cadet Scabbard
Another Bannerman Cadet scabbard


1873 Trowel S127
 A multi use tool bayonet has been a long time wish  for bayonet makers and routinely attempted. This trowel bayonet reproduction is one of three types, which have 3 different scabbard types.