✅ SOLVED Civil War finials?

callmez

Jr. Member
May 25, 2014
91
141
East Tennessee
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800
Tesoro Vaquero
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
I have been resisting the temptation to ask for help with every odd item I find, but I think it's time to seek out help with these two things that look like finials to me. Both of them were found on a known Civil War site that at various times could have been transversed by both sides, but at the end was occupied by Confederate troops. The identified artifacts I've found here include several dropped Gardner bullets and one three ring, as well as various stuff up to the present day. I think that both of these were found fairly deep for this site.

After a lot of poking around on treasurenet and elsewhere, the item on the right seems like it might be a cartridge box finial, possibly Confederate. It rings up 15-16 on the Equinox and seems very dense -- my first guess was lead but it could be an alloy of some kind (pewter?) and the small plate on the bottom may be a different metal. Measurements: height 0.785", diameter at ball 0.486", diameter at waist 0.273", diameter at bottom flare 0.430", diameter of base plate 0.490".

Cartridge box finial? US or CS, or can we tell?

The item on the left looks basically like an oversized push pin and seems to be made of cast iron, a seam line is visible under the base. Maybe malleable cast iron as the nail-like portion is bent rather than broken. I ground the nail-like portion a bit to get down to shiny metal for a decent connection during electrolysis, which cleaned it up nicely. I almost think I see traces of a black enamel in the crevices -- of course the electrolysis would have removed most of any enamel present, but it was pretty rusty before electrolysis and I saw no trace of enamel at that time. Length of non-nail portion 0.670", diameter of top part 0.425", diameter of waist 0.220", diameter of base is quite out of round, ranging from 0.540" to 0.570", length of nail approx. 0.770".

I haven't seen any references to a cast iron finial. Is that what it is, or is it something else?

Thanks to any and all for their input.
 

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devldog

Silver Member
Mar 9, 2012
3,143
5,349
Georgia
Detector(s) used
Whites MXT ALL PRO, Minelab Safari
Primary Interest:
Relic Hunting
These both look like finals to me. The smaller, darker one could be off of a cap box which held percussion caps. The larger round one with the patina could be from a cartridge box. Nice Saves. Congrat's
 
Upvote 3

VaGent

Jr. Member
Apr 20, 2021
89
226
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I have been resisting the temptation to ask for help with every odd item I find, but I think it's time to seek out help with these two things that look like finials to me. Both of them were found on a known Civil War site that at various times could have been transversed by both sides, but at the end was occupied by Confederate troops. The identified artifacts I've found here include several dropped Gardner bullets and one three ring, as well as various stuff up to the present day. I think that both of these were found fairly deep for this site.

After a lot of poking around on treasurenet and elsewhere, the item on the right seems like it might be a cartridge box finial, possibly Confederate. It rings up 15-16 on the Equinox and seems very dense -- my first guess was lead but it could be an alloy of some kind (pewter?) and the small plate on the bottom may be a different metal. Measurements: height 0.785", diameter at ball 0.486", diameter at waist 0.273", diameter at bottom flare 0.430", diameter of base plate 0.490".

Cartridge box finial? US or CS, or can we tell?

The item on the left looks basically like an oversized push pin and seems to be made of cast iron, a seam line is visible under the base. Maybe malleable cast iron as the nail-like portion is bent rather than broken. I ground the nail-like portion a bit to get down to shiny metal for a decent connection during electrolysis, which cleaned it up nicely. I almost think I see traces of a black enamel in the crevices -- of course the electrolysis would have removed most of any enamel present, but it was pretty rusty before electrolysis and I saw no trace of enamel at that time. Length of non-nail portion 0.670", diameter of top part 0.425", diameter of waist 0.220", diameter of base is quite out of round, ranging from 0.540" to 0.570", length of nail approx. 0.770".

I haven't seen any references to a cast iron finial. Is that what it is, or is it something else?

Thanks to any and all for their input.
Yep, cartridge box and cap box finials.
 
Upvote 2
OP
C

callmez

Jr. Member
May 25, 2014
91
141
East Tennessee
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800
Tesoro Vaquero
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #4
Thanks very much for the info devldog and VaGent, much appreciated! I consider this mystery SOLVED.
 
Upvote 0
OP
C

callmez

Jr. Member
May 25, 2014
91
141
East Tennessee
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800
Tesoro Vaquero
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #7
Thanks very much for the ID creskol, I believe that you've nailed it. I hadn't seen anyone point out a cast iron Civil War finial (although that seemed reasonable enough given the CW artifacts found). Supporting your suggestion is that this item was found right next to where the driveway originally curved around at a large home built in 1900.

Still marked SOLVED, but I agree that the left item is probably a carriage knob, while the right one appears to be a cartridge box finial. Further input welcomed!
 
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