14K Gold Naval Presentation Sword To Commander Daniel Delehanty by Gorham

29" single-edged spear-point blade with 20" stopped median fuller. 34.5" overall length with 5.5" 14k gold hilt with single sea serpent themed knuckle bow and sea serpent quillon. Hilt cast with the New York State Seal and oak leaf clusters on the interior of the guard as well as the coat of arms of the City of Albany, NY. Pommel cap cast with American Eagle motif surrounded by thirteen stars. Hilt marked 14k. Grooved wood grip with bottom seamed white shagreen cover and ten wraps of two-strand twisted gold wire. The reverse of the blade is deeply engraved with the gold gilt presentation: Presented to Commander Daniel Delehanty, by the Citizens of Albany New York, surrounded by foliate designs. Browned metal scabbard with heavily decorated 14k marked gold mounts and gold gilt decorations on the scabbard body. Upper mount cast with a spread winged American Eagle with a laurel wreath of stars above its head and Delehanty's initials below the knotted rope suspension mount. Middle mount with a sea serpent encircling Poseidon's trident and another knotted rope suspension mount. Drag with a sea serpent decoration and oak and laurel leaf clusters. Scabbard body with decorative gold boarder lines, foliate motifs and thirteen stars in the upper obverse panel between the upper and middle mounts. The reverse of the scabbard decorated en-suite, without the stars. This sword was the subject of a April 19, 1899 article in the Jeweler's Circular, where the sword is pictured and described and noted to be entirely 14k gold mounted and produced for presentation to Commander Delehanty by the Gorham Manufacturing Company, on order from James Mix jewelers of Albany, NY at the cost of $1,000; the ecomenic impact equivalent of nearly 1 Million Dollars today!

Daniel Delehanty (1844-1918) joined the US Navy at the age of 16 and saw service during the Civil War in the blockading squadrons operating in the Atlantic and the Gulf. He received an appointment to Annapolis from President Lincoln during the war and graduated in 1867. He was promoted to Ensign in 1868 and to Master in 1870, achieving the rank of Lieutenant in 1872. He saw service around the world with the post-Civil War US Navy, which was dedicated to the expansion of American influence and the opening of trade with previously isolated locations like Asia and the Pacific Islands. He also saw shore duty at a number of locations including the Mare Island Navy Yard, the US Naval Academy and the Brooklyn Navy Yard. While stationed at the Academy he was an instructor in naval tactics, ship building and seamanship. In 1892, he was promoted to Lt. Commander and was subsequently assigned to the be the US Naval supervisor of New York Harbor, where he invented the Delehanty "self-dumping and self-propelling garbage scow". He later served as the Executive Officer of the Battleship Texas, and saw service during the Spanish American War in Cuba. In 1898, he was appointed to be the Governor of the Sailors' Snug Harbor. The Sailors' Snug Harbor was an old age and retirement home of "aged decrepit and worn out seamen", established in 1833 on Staten Island at the bequest of Revolutionary War solider and sea master Robert Richard Randall. This sword was presented to Delehanty at the Sailor's Snug Harbor on April 8, 1899.

Provenance:From the Sword Collection of William Koch


Fine. Blade with a dulled steel patina and a few minor nicks along its edge. Engraved presentation clear and intact. Hilt spectacular with brilliant gold and fine wrap and wire. Scabbard very fine as well, with only some minor loss to the brown finish and gilt decoration due to scuffing and wear.

Estimate: $5,000 - $10,000
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium

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