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115413Re: Maintenance and Cleanliness on Campaign

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  • daniel oconnell
    Mar 1, 2009
      On a related note I'd like to chime in on this as well.... one thing
      we've learned in the field (courtesy of experienced reenactors) is
      there is always fire ash to clean your steel and brass. I'm not joking
      when I say all you have to do is have some spit, some ash and some
      sort of rag and you'd be amazed how much of your metal will come out
      bright. (in a pinch I've also used my fingers to rub the ash/spit)

      At our last Cady meeting Tom Edwards brought his shoe buckles to
      polish and exclaimed that he forgot his brass cleaner at home. I
      reminded him that HE was the experienced reenactor that told us about
      the fire ash and spit. His brass shoe buckles came out as bright as if
      using Brasso, or brick dust and oil/spit.

      My point is many times at events or in-the-field when something needed
      to be brightened up there was always fire ash to work with. And you
      always have enough spit to go around.... unless you're the bugler at
      Rourke's Rift.... :l


      --- In Revlist@yahoogroups.com, "Radford Polinsky" <rpolinsky@...> wrote:
      > Dear John and List-
      > > I've never seen mention of oil or brick dust, etc. actually being
      > > carried by soldiers BUT the men were often ordered to clean and
      > > burnish their arms. <snip> Just
      > > because none of the order books or soldiers' lists of the gear they
      > > carried mention having oil, do I leave my musket to rust?
      > Smith's Universal Military Dictionary (London 1779)
      > NECESSARIES, in a military sense, implies [long list of clothing
      > snipped]
      > 1 oil bottle, 1 brush and picker, 1 worm, 1 turn-key,
      > 1 hammer cap, and 1 stopper.
      > Simes, A Military Course for the Government and Conduct
      > of a Battalion (London 1777)
      > The form for "Inspection Report of Cloaths and Necessaries, &c"
      > (pg. 114) lists (besides clothing):
      > Leather for Arms
      > Balls of P. Clay
      > Punchin
      > Turn Key
      > Worm
      > Brush and Picker
      > Oil Bottle
      > Stopper
      > Simes The Military Guide for Young Officers (London 1781)
      > "Complement of Necessaries to be furnished each soldier"
      > 1 oil bottle; 1 brush and picker; 1 worm; 1 turnkey;
      > 1 hammer-cap; and 1 stopper.
      > As can be seen above, the oil bottle was part of the a soldier's
      > "Necessaries". You don't see it mentioned separately because
      > it was among a soldier's default items, along with things like
      > clothes and shoes. Simes above lists Pipe Clay, and the 40th
      > OB lists black ball and brushes, so at time things like these
      > were also considered necessaries. These items were so much
      > part of a soldier's standard kit that they had to issue orders to
      > leave them behind, as shown by the number of OB entries
      > starting "Shall land with no more necessaries than (list of clothing)"
      > Cheers!
      > Radford Polinsky
      > (Sjt. John Savage, Col's. Coy. HM 33rd Foot)
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