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U.S. Cheesebox canteen

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  • ebclemson
    List, Many years ago, the 1st infy. started with using Cheesebox canteens. I had examined an original plus I have a Militia Cheesebox canteen. One of our
    Message 1 of 6 , Jan 4, 2004
      List,


      Many years ago, the 1st infy. started with using Cheesebox canteens. I had examined an original plus I have a Militia Cheesebox canteen. One of our members, who makes violins for his living, did an outstanding job, no wax or pitch was needed.

      However, over the years, the documentation for their usage by US regulars has just not been found. Our unit switched to a tin canteen, similar to what were found at Ft. Miegs.

      In our continued search for the correct canteen, we are now about ready to switch again, to a wooden stave canteen.

      While searching the us archives last August, the only descriptions of issued canteens that I could find, are the wooden stave canteens.

      In short, I would be hesitant to use Cheesebox canteens, unless more evidence or documentation comes to light, even though I still have mine, now 15 years old and still holds water!

      Dave Bennett, 1st US.
    • crttop7311@aol.com
      Dave, admittedly I am not an expert, but were the US Regulars issued canteens at all? Was it done on a unit by unit basis, by regimental standing order? They
      Message 2 of 6 , Jan 4, 2004
        Dave, admittedly I am not an expert, but were the US Regulars issued canteens at all? Was it done on a unit by unit basis, by regimental standing order? They were not issued to the 1st less than ten years earlier when the L/C expedition was sent out.

        Eric Matthews, Sgt.
        XIV lD/95th Rifles
      • Brian Howard
        A very interesting discussion. As for the tin canteens, I have a copy of an original equipment return for Virginia Militia, dated 1814, which lists the
        Message 3 of 6 , Jan 5, 2004
          A very interesting discussion. As for the tin
          canteens, I have a copy of an original equipment
          return for Virginia Militia, dated 1814, which lists
          the regiment as having water bottles. My
          understanding of this term is a tin canteen covered
          with wool. Can anyone shed any additional light on
          this term?

          Brian Howard
          2nd Virginia Regt, 1813=1815

          --- ebclemson <ebclemson@...> wrote:
          > List,
          >
          >
          > Many years ago, the 1st infy. started with using
          > Cheesebox canteens. I had examined an original plus
          > I have a Militia Cheesebox canteen. One of our
          > members, who makes violins for his living, did an
          > outstanding job, no wax or pitch was needed.
          >
          > However, over the years, the documentation for their
          > usage by US regulars has just not been found. Our
          > unit switched to a tin canteen, similar to what were
          > found at Ft. Miegs.
          >
          > In our continued search for the correct canteen, we
          > are now about ready to switch again, to a wooden
          > stave canteen.
          >
          > While searching the us archives last August, the
          > only descriptions of issued canteens that I could
          > find, are the wooden stave canteens.
          >
          > In short, I would be hesitant to use Cheesebox
          > canteens, unless more evidence or documentation
          > comes to light, even though I still have mine, now
          > 15 years old and still holds water!
          >
          > Dave Bennett, 1st US.
          >
          >


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        • ebclemson
          Hey Eric, I also admit that I am not an expert on this subject. From what I have examined over the past years..... 1) US issues during the Peace Time Army
          Message 4 of 6 , Jan 5, 2004
            Hey Eric,

            I also admit that I am not an expert on this subject.

            From what I have examined over the past years.....

            1) US issues during the "Peace Time Army" were generally done by Company. Each Company returns, would be used to make the needed amount of clothing for the next year. Thus, When the company of the 1st Infantry was at Fort Osage, the company was comprised of 55 men in May of 1813. When they received their "yearly" clothing in November of 1813, they now had over 80 men due to new recruits. Thus, the men were wearing the new all blue late war (1813) coat and some 30 men were wearing the (1812) coat with red cuffs, etc. Two different coats were being worn at the same time, within one company.

            2) Canteens appear to me, to had been issued on a company level. In other words, clothing was issued to each man, he numbered each item, and was responsible for each item. But Canteens like haversacks, appear to had been issued to the company.

            3) like you, I could not find where canteens were issued. It is hard to imagine though that the 3 companies of the 1st Infantry traveled from the Missouri River to Canada, fought at Lundy's lane, Fort Erie, etc. and never had canteens?

            4) After going over Purveyors records, I did find where the new recruits of the 1st at New Brunswick NJ in 1813/1914 WERE issued canteens, but this info. does not appear in the Company Descriptive books. Either the books are incomplete, or canteens were not considered property issued to individuals, but issued to the company instead?

            I have not researched the period before 1808 very much, so could not comment on the L & C period. Yet again, do we think that the corp of discovery could had traveled from St. Louis to the Pacific without canteens?

            Dave Bennett
            1st U.States Infy. & Missouri Rangers.






            --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, crttop7311@a... wrote:
            > Dave, admittedly I am not an expert, but were the US Regulars issued canteens at all? Was it done on a unit by unit basis, by regimental standing order? They were not issued to the 1st less than ten years earlier when the L/C expedition was sent out.
            >
            > Eric Matthews, Sgt.
            > XIV lD/95th Rifles
          • dancingbobd@webtv.net
            Hi Dave, The L & C Expedition traveled almost entirely by water in boats, floating in water. Canteens do not appear on the list of items purchased or drawn
            Message 5 of 6 , Jan 5, 2004
              Hi Dave,

              The L & C Expedition traveled almost entirely by water in boats,
              floating in water. Canteens do not appear on the list of items
              purchased or drawn from public stores.

              One journal entry by Lewis [I think] covered his experiment of taking 1
              gallon of water from the river and letting it settle over night and
              finding that there was a wine glass of sediment. Jefferson had read
              McKenzies journal when he crossed the continent in the late 1790's where
              there was a portage of some 200 yards. The expectation of drinking from
              the streams on which they were traveling may not have prompted the
              planning to include canteens.

              No fertilizer or pesticide washing off of farms & ranches to pollute the
              rivers and streams. Dipping water from the river would have been the
              norm. [In 1989 I went canoeing in the boundary waters of NE Minnesota
              for 5½ days and it is so clean the we drank by dipping from the lakes.
              No sediment, thankfully!] All that said, it still does not shed any
              light on what canteens if any were available.

              Regards,

              Bob Dorian
              [aka Pvt. John Thompson, Cpt. Lewis' Company of North Western Discovery]
            • ebclemson
              ... there was plenty of Missouri river water to be had?Why would they dig a well at Fort Osage on the Missouri river, if they coul= d just drink from the
              Message 6 of 6 , Jan 6, 2004
                --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com,

                Hey Bob,
                Understand that the corp primarily traveled along rivers.

                Then......

                Why would they build Fort Bellefontaine at the site of a FOUNTAIN SPRING if=
                there was plenty of Missouri river water to be had?

                Why would they dig a well at Fort Osage on the Missouri river, if they coul=
                d just drink from the river?

                Why would they dig a well at Fort Dearborn with Lake Michigan only a stones=
                throw away and the Chicago river right next to the Sally port?

                Why did W. Scotts brigade in 1814 all have canteens, if they were primarily=
                in the area of Buffalo, Ft.Erie Chippewa and Lundy's Lane? You would think=
                that two of the Great Lakes and the Niagara river would be enough water? <g=
                >

                Yes, it is possible the Corp planned to drink enitrely from rivers, streams=
                ,etc. but highly unprobable. Did they actually think they would always be n=
                ext to a river?

                I agree that the so far we have found no documentation on canteens. However=
                , I would not want to suggest that means they did not have canteens or somew=
                ay to store and transport water.

                Why take food stuffs if the West was full of food for the taking?

                Ok, no fertilizer......well, actually there was....it was called manure. W=
                hen Buffalo crossed the streams etc they would had "naturally" left a deposi=
                t of manure. I can't remember if it was Bradbury or Sibley, but one of the=
                m mentioned about large amounts of dead buffalo floating down the Missouri. =
                Now that would be a tasty beverage, Missouri River water with just a dash of=
                rotting buffalo for flavor. mmmmmm, good.

                <g>

                Adieu,

                Cap'n Dave,

                1st Infy. & Missouri Rangers.

                dancingbobd@w... wrote:
                > Hi Dave,
                >
                > The L & C Expedition traveled almost entirely by water in boats,
                > floating in water. Canteens do not appear on the list of items
                > purchased or drawn from public stores.
                >
                > One journal entry by Lewis [I think] covered his experiment of taking 1
                > gallon of water from the river and letting it settle over night and
                > finding that there was a wine glass of sediment. Jefferson had read
                > McKenzies journal when he crossed the continent in the late 1790's where
                > there was a portage of some 200 yards. The expectation of drinking from
                > the streams on which they were traveling may not have prompted the
                > planning to include canteens.
                >
                > No fertilizer or pesticide washing off of farms & ranches to pollute the
                > rivers and streams. Dipping water from the river would have been the
                > norm. [In 1989 I went canoeing in the boundary waters of NE Minnesota
                > for 5½ days and it is so clean the we drank by dipping from the lakes.
                > No sediment, thankfully!] All that said, it still does not shed any
                > light on what canteens if any were available.
                >
                > Regards,
                >
                > Bob Dorian
                > [aka Pvt. John Thompson, Cpt. Lewis' Company of North Western Discovery]
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