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American sailors aboard Continental Navy vessels and privateer ships often used French weapons, like this cutlass, as they battled the British Navy. Many ships of the Continental Navy outfitted themselves at the ports along the Atlantic coast of France and sailed north to harass British shipping. A cutlass such as this one could be used for hand-to-hand combat when a ship’s crew boarded an enemy vessel. Cutlers, or blade makers, at France’s royal sword manufactory at Klingenthal made this cutlass. Among the workers at Klingenthal were skilled cutlers recruited from Germany to make swords for the French military. Located in a culturally German region of France, Klingenthal roughly translates from German to the “valley of blades.”

Object Details

  • Cutlass
    Made at Klingenthal Factory
    Klingenthal, France
    Iron, Steel, Brass
    Museum of the American Revolution


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