Fakes, reproductions, replicas,
an investigative report, by Harry Ridgeway 

Fakes, reproductions, replicas,
Star two part buckles, Confederate plate 311 to 317

Disclaimer:  by clicking onto this page you are expressly accepting the terms of the disclaimer explained fully on the fakes main page.

Plate 313 cast star two part buckle, manufactured by Hanover Brass
Original was crude cast, wreath is ringed.

F1046   Star two piece Belt Buckle manufactured by Hanover Brass

"This reproduction Texas plate was cast from an original. The original was a Confederate copy of a pre-war Texas state militia 2- piece, this is why it is a crude casting since the Conferate makers, in their haste, lost much of the finer details of the original pre-war buckle. Still a desirable buckle with it's crude Confederate look. A beautiful belt plate. Cast in red brass"

Source: ebay auction by jaglady00 4/15/06 "1861 Texas2-Piece Belt Buckle Plate Crude Confederate casting Item number: 6621081972"

Editor note: "jaglady00" is Hanover Brass, items sold as reproductions.   

Gary Williams explanation (civilwarfakes.com Photo # CSTX5)

Plate 313 (1861-1865 Texas Two Piece Belt Plate.) 52 x 81/wreath ht.47mm. Size may vary on the reproduction because the plate is hand finished and filed. Very close copy of the original tongue but I made the wreath to fit. Tongue was in the John Turner collection but he did not have the wreath. I used my wreath and added the tongue belt loop to the master pattern so they would match. Made a very nice looking belt plate and with this information you should not have a problem.

F1162     Star two piece Belt Buckle
F1162.jpg (24830 bytes) F1162B.jpg (19890 bytes)
Source:  Picture supplied by dealer who obtained from John Turner.  This dealer did not sell the buckle and returned it to his source.

Editor note:  This would appear to match the Hanover Brass pattern.   At this point I do not have measurements of this buckle.   The buckle certainly has a killer patina.  So is this the original piece used by Hanover Bass to make their copies or is this one also a repro? 

As noted above, Gary Williams now admits to making these for John Turner.  The plate is not marked in any meaningful way, and nearly fooled a reputable and experienced collector.  Gary Williams says he makes repros. 

Fantasy star plate, manufactured by Hanover Brass
This is pure fantasy, nothing like this ever existed during the Civil War.

F1233   Star two piece buckle 
F1233.jpg (34749 bytes)
F1233B.jpg (19030 bytes) F1233C.jpg (14427 bytes) F1233D.jpg (27202 bytes) F1233E.jpg (19401 bytes) 
Tongue keeper 46.8mm
Wreath keeper 47.9mm
Wreath height 52.7mm

Editor note:  This piece was culled from a collection that I purchased.  Unfortunately the collector had been duped by this piece, but gave it to me to use for this project.  This buckle is covered with something black and sticky, but it is flaking off in several spots.  However there are no marks on this plate to distinguish it as a repro. 

Gary Williams explanation, (civilwarfakes.com Photo # CSTX4)

Fantasy (Texas Two Piece Belt Plate.) In 1969 Mac Mason made this Texas belt plate for me to cast for a friend of his in Texas. We used his Virginia two piece wreath and applied a star to the Virginia tongue. What we got was a beautiful buckle and a very good seller. I still sell this belt plate today. Civil War belt plate, NO. Never was and never will be period. Just a fantasy. I do see this buckle faked but now you know the rest of the story.

Fantasy star plate, another manufacturer
This is pure fantasy, nothing like this ever existed during the Civil War.

F1183  Star two piece buckle 

"This 2 piece ConfederateTexas belt buckle locks together to become one piece.When locked together it measures 2 3/4"" by 1 3/4"".The front disk has a 5 point star.The back has 1862 114 and HP stamped in small lettering.I have tried to show the small print in a picture.The buckle has some amount of rust and pitting in the tight areas.I have no history on this item .I will be happy to answer any specific questions but please make your own evaluation before bidding."

Source: ebay auction by wkt4851, 5/11/06 "CIVIL WAR CS TEXAS STAR 2 PIECE BELT BUCKLE 1862 Item number: 6626535799"

Editor note:  This manufacturer clearly marked his plate, plus left a major flaw on the wreath that simply would not appear on any originals.  It presumably fooled this ebayer, but should not have fooled a collector.  Judging from all the typos in the ebay listing, I am not surprised that guy forgot to check the authenticity of what he is selling.

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