This is an exquisite authentic Comanche Native American Indian silver concho belt with sheathed knife dating to the 19th Century. The concho belt is constructed of heavy thick harness leather and shows sixteen rounded silver concho coins including the “franc à l’hercule” or French Hercules coin (which is marked on the obverse “republique française” or Republic of France) dating to circa 1848-1849 and the “franc Napoleon” or Louis Napoléon Bonaparte coin (which shows a portrait of Napoleon III on one side and is marked Napoleon emereur on the other) which was made in 1852. The belt also shows an Indian tanned steer hide and leather sheath with long hand cut fringe and pierced round holes making a unique design. The sheath holds an early circa 1850’s trade knife with two-piece solid wood grips that are held to the metal blade with three copper rivets. The ensemble is believed to date to circa 1850-1870’s and shows the correct patina and signs of use. Exactly how these early French silver coins arrived in Texas where the Comanche warrior would proudly display them on his excellent belt is unknown. It is thought that the coins would have been traded to the Comanche during the time of the military expedition sent by emperor Napoleon III when French Soldiers occupied Mexico, including Sonora, until circa 1867. Each silver coin is carefully hand worked to make a rounded concho, enough to create a beautiful belt adornment and to also leave behind various original markings the coin previously bared. Provenance: From the Historical Native American Artifacts and Weapons private museum collection in Paris, France. The belt measures 52” L, the knife is 11.5”L with a 6.75”L blade, the sheath is 9”L without the knife and each conch is approximately 1 5/8” to 2” in diameter.
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