Priceless Civil War sword ends up in Hawaii jewelry shop

By Cam Tran
Published On: Aug 06 2014 01:40:14 AM HST
Updated On: Jun 13 2014 06:31:42 AM HST

A sword presented to a soldier of the Civil War ends up in a Hawaii jewelry shop.

HONOLULU -

When you walk into the Pacific Diamond and Swiss Watch Exchange, you can expect to find unique jewelry and sparkling diamonds, but one item in this shop is perhaps the most priceless of them all -- a 150-year-old Civil War sword.

Click here to watch Cam Tran's report.

"I bought it on pure enjoyment.  I thought it was cool, " said the shop's owner Ted Gonzales.

Gonzales bought the sword in 2012.  He doesn't know how the sword ended up in Hawaii.

Despite the fact that the owner's name, Lt. Ed Coe, was inscribed on the scabbard, the shop wasn't even sure if it was real or not.  So, the sword sat in Gonzales' office for years.

One of his customers did some digging and found some intriguing history behind the sword.

A National Park Service historian confirms Lt. Coe was shot and killed during the Battle of Petersburg where more than 70,000 soldiers died.  He was just 19 years old.

"On his first charge, he was actually shot and his peers seen him fall.  They thought he died in battle," said Gonzales.  "Miraculously, he got up and charged again and he was just stunned."

Gonzales continued, "[Coe] has a premonition he was going to die in battle the next day and coincidentally enough, he was shot in the exact same place he was shot the first time and he died at that point."

Although Gonzalez says he has gotten offers up to $20,000 for the sword, he decided to sell it to the Petersburg National Battlefield in Virginia where Lt. Coe's body lies.

"Now it can go to the place where it could be enjoyed forever," said Gonzalez.

The sword is expected to be shipped to the mainland sometime next week.  In the meantime, Gonzales says you can swing by his shop on Kapiolani Boulevard and check the sword for yourself in person.

Historians say it's very rare to have a sword that old be inscribed.  But, the inscription, along with the military documentation, made it easier to track down the story behind the sword.

PHOTOS: Historic Civil War sword ends up in Hawaii store

Click here to see more photos of the Civil War sword.

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