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CIVIL WAR MODEL 1859 McCLELLAN SADDLE DARK BLUE WOOLEN GIRTH EXCELLENT SPECIMEN:  This is a scarce offering of an original Civil War period Model 1859 McClellan Saddle Woolen Girth, this specimen is full length with all the components present and intact.  The standard pattern girth as described in the 1861 Ordnance Department regulations, this particular girth is identical to the Model 1859 Girth pictured in Figure 2, page 234 of American Military Saddles, 1776-1945.  These woolen girths continued in use after the Civil War until they were replaced by the Model 1872 Girths.   

The standard pattern girth as described in the Ordnance Department regulations, this girth is manufactured of dark blue woolen webbing that still retains its even original color.  This is one of two basic color variations that have been noted on these girths this dark blue and an indigo or medium blue.  All of the leather billets, keepers, the iron buckles and D ring are present and intact, and the girth-billet loop is sewn across the center of the girth.   

The dark blue woolen webbing is in excellent condition, full form with the exception of a small pull of the material where the weave separated from the stitching which anchors the leather safe supporting the buckle.  This area is stable, the stitching is not affected, and there is only minimal impact to the appearance of the girth.  The underside of the woolen webbing has some fading along one edge, perhaps an area where for some reason the dye did not set in the material.  The integrity of this area is not affected and it is not visible when the girth is displayed, showing the top side as it appeared when buckled on the horse.    

The leather components are all very strong and pliable with only minor crazing in isolated spots on the leather surfaces.  The iron buckles and the D ring all freely move.  There is the faint outline of the maker's stamp still visible on the face of the "D" ring safe.  The girth measuring 19 long and 4 wide, is full length and retains its full form.   

This is an excellent example of a particularly scarce piece of Civil War Cavalry horse equipment.  Difficult to find in any condition and usually missing from most collections, finding these early girths in this condition is almost impossible.  This girth would certainly complement your Civil War or early Indian War Cavalry saddle collection and would be difficult to upgrade.  (0818)  $750



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