icon for Home page
icon for Kid's Home page
icon for Digital Collection
icon for Activities
icon for Turns Exhibit
icon for In the Classroom
icon for Chronologies
icon for My Collection

Online Collection

Detail 1
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
Contact us for information about using this image.


label levels:

Not all British soldiers went home after the American Revolution. Many chose to stay in the new United States. William Dorrell was one of the thousands of captured British soldiers of General John Burgoyne's army that had met with disaster at the battle of Saratoga in New York in 1777. Dorrell settled in Massachusetts and went on to found a religious sect known as the Dorrelites in 1786. Among other beliefs, the Dorrelites refused to kill animals for food or clothing. This early nineteenth century cavalry sabre was found in Dorrell's house in Leyden, Massachusetts, after he died in 1846. The knuckle guard is broken off and, curiously, the leather covering has been removed and the twine underlayer retained by copper wires. Perhaps William Dorrell found the leather offensive in light of his Dorrellite beliefs.


top of page


date   1775-1825
location   Leyden, Massachusetts
length   32.0"
process/materials   metal, twine
item type   Weapons/Armament - Edged
accession #   #1884.13

Look Closer icon My Collection icon Detailed info icon

ecard icon Send an e-Postcard of this object

See Also...

Shoes of William Dorrell (1752-1846)

button for Side by Side Viewingbutton for Glossarybutton for Printing Helpbutton for How to Read Old Documents


Home | Online Collection | Things To Do | Turns Exhibit | Classroom | Chronologies | My Collection
About This Site | Site Index | Site Search | Feedback