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MODEL 1910 MOUNTED CARTRIDGE BELT-RIMLESS EAGLE SNAPS –FIELD MODIFICATION – VERY NICE CONDITION:  Fresh from an old carefully assembled collection, this is a very nice specimen of the rare Model 1910 Mounted Cartridge Belt, as issued to the US Army Cavalry troopers during the Mexican Punitive Expedition into Mexico in 1916.  This particular belt features one of the more desirable field modifications and is unit marked.  

As originally designed with two revolver ammunition pockets on each side of the front closure, this belt was intended to be issued with the Model 1909 Colt Revolver.  However, as noted in so many other instances through the history of the Ordnance Department’s efforts to coordinate the development and issue of new weapons and the related accoutrements, technological developments outstripped the design and intended use of this belt, and by the time the belt was issued for use in the field most of the mounted soldiers had been issued the Model 1911 Automatic Colt Pistol.  The M1911 which required the two pocket magazine pouch to carry additional ammunition rendered the four revolver ammunition pockets on this belt obsolete.   

This belt features one of the better known modifications in which one or both sets of the revolver ammunition pockets were removed and replaced with the M1911 Mills Magazine Pouch.  This modification was done very neatly, likely by the arsenal or a competent company saddler, and in the case of this particular belt, enhancing the collector value only one set of the revolver ammunition pockets was removed to accommodate the magazine pouch, leaving the other set of revolver ammunition pockets intact.  This very same modification was executed on the Model 1910 Belt worn by the US Army cavalry trooper shown in the photograph below, taken in 1915 in Galveston, Texas, on the eve of the Punitive Expedition into Mexico. 

This belt has survived in very nice condition given the obvious signs of issue and use evidenced by the field modification and the unit inventory stencils on the interior surface of the belt.  There is no sign of wear, fraying, fading, tearing or other damage on this belt with all of the flaps and pockets in excellent condition and the metal fittings and eagle snap buttons retaining the majority of their original darkened finish.   All of the rimless eagle snaps are intact with no tearing or wear around the snaps and all of the clip retaining straps are present and intact in each of the rifle cartridge pockets.  The two revolver ammunition pockets on the right side of the belt are completely intact.  As is correct, the left hand section of the belt features the unique oval eyelets along the bottom edge of the belt, each eyelet large enough to accommodate the hanger wires of two items such as the tool carriers or first aid pouch.  Both of the belt’s metal end pieces bear the Mills Company logo and patent information and all three sections of the belt still retain the visible Mills Company ink stamped bullet logo on the interior surface of the web – two of these stamps also have legible date stamps of 1913.  The interior surfaces of both sides of the belt and the center adjusting strap are stenciled with unit identification and inventory numbers. The stencils consist of the Cavalry crossed sabres with the numeral “21” above the sabres and the letter “C” below.  The center adjusting strap is stenciled “21 C 1”.     

Introduced in the early years of the 20th Century, these belts were exposed to extensive service to include the Punitive Expedition into Mexico and World War One, and few of these belts survive in such nice condition, particularly those that exhibit this interesting and historically significant field modification.  (0435) $1250




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