Monday, May 12, 2008

Metal and Wood Civil War Drum

[This article copied from the article archive of the website of Historical Auctions without permission, pursuant to the fair use doctrine. No claim of original generation or added content is made. The material is exactly as it appears on that organization's website. It is reprinted here for the interesting and important facts stated.]

Most Civil War drums were made almost entirely of wood. This rare example has a brass shell with wood rims and rope tension devices. The brass has so darkened over time that unless one examines the drum carefully, it has the appearance of being made from wood.

Condition: At 12¼" in height and nearly 16" in diameter, this drum has its original rawhide snares and leather tighteners intact. Both original drumheads are cracked and torn and the wood rims show aging of their red paint. This drum has seen much field use and is an attractive display piece.

Sold for:
$1,075.50 (includes BP) Bid Source: Live: Phone
Ended: Nov 30, 2007
Lot: 72129 Auction: 663
Heritage Auction Galleries,


At May 31, 2008 at 2:42 PM , Blogger Ellis said...

Same drum auctioned previously by Cowan's Auctions (see Sold at Cowan's Historic Americana auction Nov. 16-18, 2005, for $373.75 (incl. buyer's premium). Described as:

232. CIVIL WAR BRASS SNARE INFANTRY DRUM, a scare Civil War drum with a body of metal, not wood, measuring 12.25" high and 15.9" diameter. The brass shell is extremely dark with age and does not appear to be metal at first glance (no dents or dings). The rims, however, are wooden and painted a deep aged red. The original rope and all leather tighteners are in good condition, but both original heads are split. Original rawhide snares and the brass tightener are intact. Garofalo & Elrod's Pictorial History of Civil War Era Musical Instruments states, Although the overwhelming majority of Civil War drummers played on rope tension drums made of wood, metal shelled drums with rope tension were not uncommon during the war...several drums of this type have survived and are in private and public collections. This is one of those survivors of the Civil War. Overall, VG condition with details noted above.
(EST $600-$800)
Price Realized: $373.75


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