This Thames River Police hanger dates to the first half of the 19th Century and is rare.
The Thames River police are the World’s oldest police force, founded in 1798, thirty-one years before the establishment of the Metropolitan Police. The River Police were initially established to police the Pool of London, the area of the river Thames where newly arrived ships waited to have their cargoes inspected by customs officers. The primary focus of the Thames River Police was to ensure that taxable goods were not removed from these vessels prior to their inspection by government tax collectors.
The Thames River Police hanger differs from those issued to land forces in that it has a cast brass grip and two-bar guard.
The 688mm blade has a broad, single fuller on both sides, running almost the full length of the blade. The flat spine terminates in an upper false edge and spear point. The edge is unsharpened.
The blade is in great condition and retains its original polished finish with only a few small patches of very pale tarnish with a tiny darker area at the point. The ricasso bears a crowned inspection stamp and retains its original washer.
The cast brass hilt is in excellent condition. The button operated locking catch is in excellent working order and the blade is firm in the hilt.
The sword is complete with its leather scabbard with brass locket and chape. The scabbard is in very good condition and the stitching is intact and tight. The brass locket and chape are in good condition and the sword sheathes smoothly and locks tightly into the scabbard.
This is an excellent example of a rare River Police constables’ hanger.