Froelich Confederate Swords
A “Dog River” is a sword that bears Confederate manufacturing traits, but the maker is unidentified. A “Kenansviille” refers to a Confederate sword manufactured by The Confederate States Armory in Kenansville, North Carolina. Despite its official sounding name, this facility was not an official CS armory. It was a private manufacturer. The principal owner, Louis Froelich, sold edged weapons the CS government as well as to private clients. His swords are often also called “Froelichs.”
Froelich made enlisted men’s cavalry swords in two forms, a first model and a second model. He also made foot officer’s swords, staff and field officer’s swords and sabre bayonets. The staff and field officer variants garner the highest prices. There are two models. The first has a cast hilt with CSA forming the guard. The second looks somewhat like an 1850 US foot sword with CSA on a ribbon in the guard. Froelichs typically are not marked with any maker’s name. Rather, they are distinct looking swords that are attributed to this maker. Some, but not all, will have parts that bear matching hand-etched Roman numerals.
No CS sword is uncommon. However, the cavalry swords are the most readily found. Prices for Froelichs are fairly high and these swords have kept their value pretty well despite the recession. Beware though, the staff and field swords have been mass reproduced and faked. If you think you have a Froelich, then you need to have it verified and appraised by a reputable dealer - not only for sale purposes, but also for insurance purposes.
Froelich operated only during the civil war and, as I recall, his factory was destroyed in a Union raid before 1865. If you have an authentic Froelich, in my opinion you do not have to have Confederate use provenance for it yo have significant value. If you do have provenance linking a certain soldier or officer to the sword, then its value would be substantially higher.
Hope this helps.
Image of a Kenansville Staff and Field Officer’s Sword from damonmills.com