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"US" Marked American Bayonet

ca.1776-1780
Origin: America
OL: 20 1/8" Blade: 16 1/4" x 1 5/16" Socket: 3"
Iron and steel
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 2015-150
American copy of the British style, but proportioned and configured for a musket with the bayonet mounting system of the French Model 1774.
Label:This "Brown Bess" bayonet knock-off is of a type which was likely an official pattern produced for the Patriot forces, since it bears the large "US" property mark of the Continental Army stamped into the blade's wide face. As the Revolutionary War progressed and tens of thousands of French muskets came into Continental stores, the demand for accompanying bayonets rose.

Although made in the British style, this bayonet has proportions that suggest it was intended for one of these French imports, having a shorter and smaller-bored socket. The mounting configuration of this bayonet corresponds with the Model 1774 infantry musket, one of the patterns known to have been shipped from France for the use of the Continental Army. Later in the Revolution American smiths began producing bayonets of the French style, and abandoned the British pattern completely.
Provenance:ex. coll. Dan Morrison (NJ)
Mark(s):Base of blade struck with a large deep "US."