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      SC's Sword of State missing for more than 70 years

      The official sword of South Carolina, (undated photo)

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- South Carolina's original Sword of State was the symbol of power in the Palmetto state for several hundred years -- until it disappeared in 1941. Its whereabouts have been a mystery ever since.

      The sergeant-at-arms discovered the sword was missing when he went to lead the state Senate to a joint assembly with the House. Authorities initially thought it was a prank, but the silver sword with its unusually wavy blade was never seen again.

      South Carolina House Clerk Charles Reid hopes the sword might still turn up, perhaps stored away in an attic by someone unaware of its history. The state's mace had a similar fate, disappearing twice during the Revolutionary War and in 1971. But it was returned home safely both times.