Photo evidence shows some Sergeants with sabers in the Artillery in the Confederacy. Used as Jerry said as a signal tool or guidon. I've seen photos of Corporals in camp with sabers in the Union Army. Sabers weren't much good for fighting. The thing was as cumbersome as toting your mother-in-law around. ;-) Funny that Forrest who liked sabers for cookouts was credited with using them very often by historical artists such as John Paul Strain. His newest print shows Forrest with a bloody saber in his hand and the description of the action credits at least 5 kills with his sword. I call BS. Soldiers in that time learned real fast to ditch anything that wasn't of use. Guns and food were of use. Confederate Infantry carried a tin cup in place of a canteen. Easier and quicker to fill at a creek or well. And besides, the canteen was already in two pieces. One a plate and the other a shovel.