Thursday, July 11, 2013


Here’s a thing you don’t see every day, in fact I’ve never seen anything remotely like it before, although as you can see it dates from a few years back, so it’s not exactly breaking news.  It’s from the website belonging to Heritage Auctions, reporting that they sold a “huge” piece of Civil War hardtack for a little over a thousand dollars; “huge” here being synonymous with four and a half inches square.

This is a perfectly genuine sale, as far as I can tell, and I note that there were five bidders.  And I guess there are plenty of collectors prepared to pay a thousand dollars for a desirable Civil War souvenir, but still …

What amazes me, is that the auctioneers say it’s “one of the largest” they’ve ever seen, but only ONE of the largest, so not the VERY largest, so does that mean there are some pieces around that are five inches squares, six inches square?

Then we’re told that these things are “now quite scarce” – so only QUITE scarce – whereas you and I might think it’s amazing there’s even one of them in existence.  Which only goes to show how ignorant I am (and I suspect you are too) about the history of collectible hardtack, but I suppose we knew that already.


  1. I thought the interesting part was the evidence of repair. How does one get into the business of cracker restoration?

    1. Online courses available now from ITT Tech.