Swords -- Sources of information?

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Dec 13, 2013
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Neighbor, who (through a mutual acquaintance) heard of my interest in knives asked if I knew of anyone who might be interested in some old swords he owns. He clearly has no idea of their value -- nor do I. I suspect, because they might well be of extremely modest value, that paying for an appraisal would not make much sense. Does anyone know of a helpful resource he might use? (I suppose what might make the most sense, at least at this initial phase, would be for him to find someone friendly and knowledgeable on KKF who would be willing to at least look at some photographs.)

Suggestions? He is in the Philadelphia area.

Are these Japanese swords or Western swords? If Japanese I might be able to up with some JSSUS names who might take a look. A quick appraisal would probably be free but might undervalue the swords wither slightly or significantly depending on what your friend has and who is looking at them. If they are entirely WWII swords you may not get much interest from the Japanese Sword Society. Military memorabilia collectors are sort of a different audience from Japanese sword collectors and dealers.
Thanks much for responding. I did not see any of the swords in person (I have been out of town), but received a photo via email, and it certainly looks to my untrained eyes that at least one sword is likely to be Japanese (or a counterfeit). What do you think?


  • sword image.jpg
    sword image.jpg
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Thanks, all!

Shows how little I know -- I saw what looked like some sort of Japanese image(s) on the bottom sword, and therefore evidently wrongfully concluded that it might be a Japanese sword.

In any event, I really appreciate all the advice, which I will pass along to my neighbor.
Might the second from the bottom be a cavalry saber? The second from the top, the short one, and the one below it I am almost certain are bayonets from the Franco Prussian War.
Of course you may be correct. Appreciate the speculation. I passed along your posting to my neighbor, who also expressed his appreciation. He stated that, based on a bit of his own investigation, he now doesn't "think any of the swords are Japanese, and instead are probably French, and from the late 19th to early 20th century. A couple of them are actually bayonets and not swords, per se." He is now contemplating consigning them to Briggs Auctions for sale.
The center three are bayonets for sure, French sounds about right. That bottom sword looks too short to be a cavalry weapon. Its possibly a police sword but I'm not sure about that. No guess about the top sword other than its of the "smallsword" pattern.