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  1. #1

    Jun 2006
    3 in Central PA
    Whites XLT, Whites V3i, Whites TDI beachhunter
    204
    1 times

    Button and Whatzit ID needed

    If anyone can help out with any information on these two fine pieces It would be greatly appreciated.

    Both were found in a yard of a house that was built in the mid 50's but the town is older than that 1800's. I don't think these Items are real old but I'm curious. I thought the whatzit was for a flag pole but the eagle on it would be upside down. It also looks like the part with the eagle should open like a cup, but is now collapsed. The Button has markings on it Here's what I can make out "hostra X es X devs X spes" or " Nostra X es X dfvs X spes"

    Thanks in advance for any help you can provide

    3searchin
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  2. #2
    us
    Sep 2006
    Montana
    11,697
    105 times
    Banner Finds (1)

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    From the source site linked below:

    "... the words in English meant " God Is Our Hope." Further research reveled that the eagle is a Teutonic eagle. The button may have come of a Hessian soldier, mercenaries used by the British during the Revolutionary War. However, modern "blazer buttons of this type are often found."

    Go here for additional information (7th item down): http://www.virrob.home.dixie-net.com/whatisit.html

    Here is what looks like, and prolly is, a reproduction... I think the shank on yours will be key in identifying it authenticity.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/Vintage-Es-Devs-...QQcmdZViewItem

    Here is an actual excavated Hessian Soldier Button: Compare shanks.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/Napoleonic-War-A...QQcmdZViewItem

  3. #3
    us
    Ben from NH, the Z means nothing

    Dec 2004
    Brentwood, NH
    White's Classic SL White's Surf P.I.
    6,643
    6035 times

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    Welcome 3searchin! The button is a civilian blazer button, as noted in this link: http://forum.treasurenet.com/index.p...c,34006.0.html I resized one of the photos for the first item... looks pretty interesting. -Ben (oops, Jim beat me to references as I was typing)
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    Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain

  4. #4
    us
    Sep 2006
    Montana
    11,697
    105 times
    Banner Finds (1)

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    Sorry Ben! Beatcha to it... any idea what that other thing is? Looks like a bayonet scabbord tip (kinda).

    What size it that other thing 3searchin?


    *Some time later* I'm going with copper bayonet scabbard tip with drag and etching... She's a bueaty!

  5. #5

    Jun 2006
    3 in Central PA
    Whites XLT, Whites V3i, Whites TDI beachhunter
    204
    1 times

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    Quote Originally Posted by Montana Jim
    Sorry Ben! Beatcha to it... any idea what that other thing is? Looks like a bayonet scabbord tip (kinda).

    What size it that other thing 3searchin?
    It measures 3 inches long, the ball on the end is 3/4 of an inch.
    I don't think it's a scabbard tip, If i had to guess it looks like it was round and not of an oval shape like most tips

    Wow you guys are great. Thanks for the info on the button. The back on the button is completely encrusted, so it's soaking now. I'll let everyonr see it when it's clean.

  6. #6

    Jun 2006
    3 in Central PA
    Whites XLT, Whites V3i, Whites TDI beachhunter
    204
    1 times

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    I've been looking at the button a little closer. The lettering looks more like the actual hessian button but the back I'm not so sure about. There was a solid loop on the back, And I say was because it came off in my hand (I barely touched it). It wasn't the thin little metal like the repro, but it also wasn't as big as the original so now I'm a little confused.....And angry I broke it. I'll post pictures later........

  7. #7
    de
    Apr 2004
    Kusel County
    181
    154 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Honorable Mentions (1)

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    Hello all,

    3S, when you post more pictures, take one of the end of the ball on the eagle piece. I know this is a stretch (a BIG one), but it appears in the photos to have wear marks like it actually swivelled inside something (with the eagle as the "handle")...a ball-n-socket joint of some kind. Maybe a decorative water spigot?

    Batch

  8. #8
    us
    Sep 2006
    Montana
    11,697
    105 times
    Banner Finds (1)

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    I think your button is the real deal...

  9. #9

    Jun 2006
    3 in Central PA
    Whites XLT, Whites V3i, Whites TDI beachhunter
    204
    1 times

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    OK I have some more information for everyone. upon further review.....

    The Ball end on the whatzit is hollow and is open to the part behind the eagle. the hole on the end behind the eagle seems to be bigger then the hole in the picture?? The hole in the picture is 1/4 of an inch. Even with the ball end cleaned out it is still quite heavy for the size.(i don't have anything I can think of to weight it). Again the part with the eagle on it seems to be smashed flat. It was either round or oval, but leaning towards round.

    I've also included more pic of the back of the button. I included a coin for reference on size. I believe we may have one of the reproductions, but I still haven't convinced myself of that yet......

    And to top it off I dropped the camera and shattered the display screen before taking these pics. So I can't do a whole lot better on the quality
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  10. #10
    Charter Member

    May 2005
    6,380
    201 times

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    The "whatzit" appears to be a plume holder. Similar "eagle & star with rays" designs were used on various U.S. military headgear from the 1830's through the late 1800's. The helmet in the photo below is the Model 1881.

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    Ben, good call on the blazer button!
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  11. #11
    us
    Oct 2006
    Wartburg, Tennessee, U.S.A.
    Garrett Ace 250, Tesoro Tiger Shark, Garrett AT Pro
    3,101
    122 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Honorable Mentions (2)

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    That's a real beauty. Great find!!!
    Disclaimer: The views or opinions of this patient are not necessarily the same as those held by the owners or staff of this facility.
    He sometimes escapes his padded cell. If this patient is contacting you against your wishes please tell him to discontinue immediately.
    Signed, Dr. Ima Quack

  12. #12

    Jun 2006
    3 in Central PA
    Whites XLT, Whites V3i, Whites TDI beachhunter
    204
    1 times

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    Quote Originally Posted by PBK
    The "whatzit" appears to be a plume holder. Similar "eagle & star with rays" designs were used on various U.S. military headgear from the 1830's through the late 1800's. The helmet in the photo below is the Model 1881.
    PBK.........You my friend are good.

    I looked for a long time on that thing and you whip out an answer like that *snaps finger*


    One Problem solved, but everyone has been of great help on these two items. I thank you all.

  13. #13

    Mar 2006
    Idaho
    1,338
    4 times

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    PBK!

    6 more weeks and I would of figured out!

    Tony

  14. #14

    Jun 2006
    3 in Central PA
    Whites XLT, Whites V3i, Whites TDI beachhunter
    204
    1 times

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    Just a quick question.

    With the fact that the plume holder is smashed flat. Would you try and open it back up or leave it as we found it.

    There are no really hard creases in the metal, but I don't know if I want to chance ruining it to try and open it up. It's very sweet as it is right now, but It would be better and make a nice display piece if it were open like it should be..........

    Just wanted some other opinions..........

    3s

  15. #15
    us
    Sep 2006
    Montana
    11,697
    105 times
    Banner Finds (1)

    Re: Button and Whatzit ID needed

    I find tons of twisted and smashed brass bits and pieces, uniform stuff, and other stuff.

    My advise is: Leave it alone!

    You dug it up, it's been lost since it's been lost, it should mean a little something to you as found, and it's a wonderful relic... and I mean that's an awesome piece to find! If you screw it up it's lost it's originality, it's charactor, and it's petina.

    Display it proudly "as dug".

    IMHO

 

 
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