Specializing in Authentic Civil War Artifacts
  • Civil War Eagle Drum

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    Civil War Eagle Drum - Inventory Number: MUS 060 

    Recently de assencioned from a Connecticut Museum.

    Made in 1864, this eagle snare drum was constructed by Ernest Vogt of Philadelphia. Ernest Vogt. was a manufacturer of drums, banjos, tambourines. His shop was located at 225 Beaver Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

    Vogt received a government contract on December 29, 1864 for 2,000 regimental drums. A stenciled winged eagle is painted on infantry blue background on the drum's face. The eagle bears a red riband marked “Reg. U.S. Infantry” the regimental designation on the left banner appears to read “50” quite possibly 50th Mass. due to the proximity to Conn.. On the eagle’s breast is a traditional American shield. Surrounding his head are thirty-two six-pointed stars, and above him the fiery arched clouds are capped with a sunburst pattern of rays. The ash shell is decorated with Vogt’s personal tack pattern, an arrow-circle-arrow design with vertical borders on each side.

    The original paint has bold colors and is strong, some minor surface abrasions from use and handling.  The body is full size and has not been cut down measuring 16" wide x 13" tall.  The base of the drum has a wooden bottom inserted, held in place by a series of small tacks (easily removable).  Overall one of the better condition examples we've encountered in several years.  Easy to restore to a complete drum or display in its current form.  

    General History

    1863 regulations allowed recruiters to enlist those, “such as the recruits as are found to possess a natural talent for music, to be instructed on the fife, bugle, and drum, and other military instruments...care should be taken to enlist those only who have a natural talent for music." Young musicians were trained at Governor’s Island in New York. George Bruce served as Principal Instructor at Governor’s Island. Bruce along with Daniel Decatur Emmett, the composer of Dixie, authored The Drummers and Fifer’s Guide. Their guide became the standard for military musicians. Many of the field drummers were young boys, age twelve to sixteen. A drummer sounded the morning and evening camp duties and also sounded the field maneuvers. Most field drummers would have been accompanied by fifers.

    Inventory Number: MUS 060