COLLECTION: Mechanical Arts & Arms

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"US" surcharged French Model 1763 bayonet

ca.1763-1769
Origin: France
Overall: 16 7/8" Socket: 2 7/8" Blade: 12 9/16"
Iron and steel
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 2011-92
Label:When French muskets began pouring into the hands of the Patriot forces during the Revolution, many were equipped with bayonets of this pattern, the Model 1763. The arms being shipped to America were very good, but considered obsolete for service in the French Army. Such was the case with this weapon, one of the last French bayonet patterns to be made without a "locking" device meant to keep it mounted on the musket.

This bayonet's service in the Continental Army is attested to by the "US" engraved into the rear of the socket, denoting it as government property. Furthermore, it shows evidence of a hard life; its socket has been shortened and hammered from the rear, and the left side of the blade is now ragged.

The damage to the edge of the blade was likely caused by use as a screwdriver to tighten a flint in the jaws of the musket lock, a common occurrence during the period.
Mark(s):Shank and blade struck with illegible marks.
Inscription(s):Rear of socket engraved with "US".