American Socket Bayonet Scabbards circa 1855 to 1900


In 1855 the American military decided on a new Bayonet fo rall services this was the 1855, this remained in service until they replaced it with the 1873 whixh used the same pattern bayonebt 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 attaqched belt loop attached by a frog 2, 3, 7, or 8 rivets or in an all a stitched version.

1855 0 Rivet frog
  The first scababrds came with an all stitched frog

1855 TYPE II 2 Rivet frog S52
Modern reproduction

1855 TYPE II 3 Rivet scabbard S57
Modern reproduction


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


1855 TYPE III 8 Rivet scabbard S54
Eight rivet scabbbard version of the 1855 leather scabbards 
Russia Mosin Nagant.jpg (51639 bytes) Reproduction 8 rivet scabbArd on aN 1855 made for re-enactors.


HOFFMAN 1st Pattern Scabbard   
1st pattern of the hoffman swivel made at Waterville Arsenal this gave a  full 360 degree rotation to the scabbard adn attacjment which was found to be unacceptableit 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 rossette
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 rossette


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


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 ot the swivel, and the belt attachment method, including for some militia units attachment methods for shoulder straps.

  1873 Scabbard rossetes

The issue 1873 scabbards came with a swivel connecting the belt loop with the scababrd frog. Military issue came with U.S, USN or USMC, Milititia units came with a avariety 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.

A unknown
Blank - Sold to be marked by purchasing unit, comes in large and small sizes.
GCC Geogetown College Cadets (MD or KY)
IND Indiana
KSG for Kentucky (formerly thought to be Kansas) State Guard
MASS Massachusetts (I forgot that one)
MG Morris Guards (NJ)
NC North Carolina NG National Guard (location unknown)
NGP for National Guard Pennsylvania
NJ for New Jersey
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 rossettes owned


1873 NJ Button

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

Massachusets button on 1873 scabbard uses theMcKenny throat


1873 USN
Total length =  mm   Blade length =  mm Blade width = mm MRD = mm
USN button on 1873 scabbard, t

1873 U.S Button S84
U.S button on 1873 scabbard, this scabbard has been fitted with hooks to go on a leter 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 rossette S96
1873 bayonet missing it's locking ring stud. Has added wire hooks to allow the bayoent to be fitted to later web belts 


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


Central Rivet Scababrd
Scabbard missing the hanger with cental location for rivet 


Off Center Rivet Scababrd
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 rossette and a dircular washer rather than the ealry pettled 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.


Total length =  mm   Blade length = mm Blade width =mm MRD = mm
Bannerman cadet bayonet 16" 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.