No honest person ever wants to discover, hear, or share news like this in the history community. Still, bad things happen, and by sharing the details, perhaps the thieves will be apprehended or unable to sell their stolen artifacts to unsuspecting buyers.
At the end of September 2018, the small museum operated by Kernstown Battlefield Association just south of Winchester, Virginia, was robbed. Only Civil War-related artifacts were taken in the burglary, which occurred between the 21st and 29th. Investigators believe the criminals entered the building through a second story window, avoided the motion sensors, and took the artifacts from the locked display cabinets.
Many of the stolen items are from private collections and were on loan to the battlefield association. The items’ values total between $5,000 and $10,000, and reportedly include:
1861 North Savage .36 CAL. Revolver
1858 Remington .44 CAL. Revolver
1860 Colt 4 Screw Army standard issued sidearm
1873 Saber model Sword
Authentic civil war cartridge box
US Navy Leather Primer Pouch “Navy Yard NY 1863” with two anchors stamped on the front
1857 Smith Patent Carbine
Confederate double barrel shotgun
Unknown quantity spent civil war bullets
Police believe the thieves will try to sell the artifacts online, in pawn shops, or perhaps to unsuspecting collectors or museums. The Winchester Police Department has asked for any tips or information to be reported on their anonymous tip line: (540) 665-TIPS (8477).
For more details, please view these news articles: