"Pioneer" Troops were akin to Military Engineering soldiers in many respects. The most common difference was that Pioneers did not build Fortifications (although they were known to help, depending on the particular National Army they belonged to). The primary mission of Pioneer Forces were to clear organic obstruction that could hinder an Army on the march. This meant trees, brushes etc. The most noted were France's Sapper Corps. These Forces primarily were armed with standard Infantry weapons, but also carried Felling Axes. Ideal for clearing, still a Felling Axe was long and unwieldy. Many Armies were aware of this, and began to develop more practical tools. The Pioneer Sword was such an advancement. Designed as a typical Short Sword, these weapons featured a 2-foot, reinforced blade. These blades were 2 to 3-inches in width. Considered a single edged blade, the False Blade (top), featured serrated notches. These served as a type of sawing and chopping tool. Designed with a heavy brass open handle, Pioneer Swords also served a function as a "hand to hand" combat weapon. They could serve as both Sword and knife. Pioneer Corps. were at their zenith in use, during The Napoleonic Wars of the early 19th Century (and were still in existence in the early 20th Century).