Rare Variant Plate Between 1880-1882.
The belt is known as a .45 caliber infantry cartridge belt, with 45 loops, incorporating 4 eyelets that allowed the proper placement of the brass wire hanger for the Springfield Rifle bayonet scabbard. The buckle is a rare variant, that was probably made between the 1880 and 1882 plate, This variant has only a raised oval and US on a flat faced plate with no raised edge.
The belt is believed to have been used by state militias. The belt was finished on the ends with dark oil cloth which has long been gone form this example.The inside of the belt has stenciled letters and numbers for an unknown unit, now unreadable for the most part. The buckle is generally in very good condition, and shows repair on the belt pins that hold the buckle in place. One side is completely replaces with heavy copper or brass wire, looped at the ends; and on the other side the original pin is missing the rounded end at the bottom. The repairs certainly look period, and speak to one of the reasons why the Army decided these early plates would not be a good choice for field use.
The webbing shows wear to the loop areas, general wear, otherwise in good and better condition. The plate is extremely uncommon.
USPS Priority Flat Rate $14.00