Civil War Sword Back In New Bern

Mar 21, 2011

A relic from the Civil War Battle of New Bern is back in North Carolina. The combat sword from one of the few female union soldiers to play a prominent role on the battlefield is in the hands of a local Civil War memorabilia dealer.

Will Gorges says Kady Brownell was credited with helping her Rhode Island regiment avoid friendly fire by climbing to high ground and using her unit's flag to wave off an attack from fellow union soldiers:

"The woman was a heroine. I mean she was lauded as a woman who had saved many lives of her fellow men by guarding the colors and protecting a line of troops and she also did the services as a nurse during the Civil War on the battlefield where she tended to not only wounded northern soldiers, but wounded confederate soldiers as well."

Gorges says Brownell was the only female soldier to receive a Civil War pension. He now owns the sword the "Heroine of New Bern" carried with her in the battle. Gorges says it's easy to identify because her name is carved into the scabbard and photos exist of Brownell with the sword.