Sheet Iron Belt Plate


Description and Photograph




     The iron CS plate is super rare in any condition, and usually they are in very poor condition.  This is attributable to two things; first, their manufacture and distribution was very limited. Second, because it is made of die-struck sheet iron; most would have deteriorated beyond recognition after only a few years lying in the ground.  Usually when one is found it is nearly illegible due to excessive oxidation.  Even above ground, they are generally oxidized badly.

     Of the few examples that had been excavated, until now all had been in the Western Theatre and principally Arkansas.  Recently two have been found near Liberty Hill, Tazewell County, in Southwest Virginia.  So how did they get there?

     John Hallum b. 1833 wrote Reminiscences of the Civil War, published in 1903 by Tunnah & Pittard, Little Rock, Arkansas.  He writes of Colonel H. L. Giltnerís Brigade, consisting of the 4th Kentucky Cavalry, 10th Mounted Kentucky Rifles, and 10th Kentucky Cavalry and the 64th Virginia going into camp at Liberty Hill after the Battle of Saltville.  It is likely that the plate came to Virginia with Giltnerís men, but it would require more research to determine the most likely candidate.  More research may reveal who from Arkansas, or the far west Tennessee and Kentucky counties came to Liberty Hill.

     This plate has a verbal provenance of having been excavated on Peacock Creek, on the north side of Shelbyville, Tennessee in the late 1900s.  The plate is in very good excavated condition.  Usually these plates are disintegrating when they are found.  This one is solid and the brass hooks are original and remain tight.  There is no restoration or alteration in any way. 




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