Circa 1790 Field Snare Drum
Circa 1790 Eagle-Decorated American Military Snare Drum. Doubtless the earliest example we've ever cataloged. In nice untouched condition and exhibiting unusual fabrication technique. 15 1/4" high, 15" diameter, including hoops. Unquestionably original size with wood reinforcing hoops at top and bottom inside. Both original heads present, one with a hole with no loss. Also retains what appears to be the original rope and leather tighteners. Hoops and body with very prominent seams, indicative of this early period. The body of the drum is unique in our experience, fabricated of two halves with a third 5 1/2" section on the outside for reinforcement and to cover the seam of the underlying two halves. The top and bottom section are painted red, the center outer section painted yellow. The drum is further decorated with a wonderful, primitive, black spread wing eagle with 10" wingspan. The eagle clutches an American shield on one side, cluster of arrows on the other, with riband below. Additionally, although there is no maker's label, and clearly never was, there are 1/2" stenciled black letters, somewhat faded, on the body near the top hoop, which appear to be "Hale / 21". Significance unknown but very possibly the maker. Very nice untouched condition. Showing its great age but very sound and complete with a set of period sticks. A very scarce American military drum from this early period. Estimate: $2,200 - up.