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CIVIL WAR PATTERN 1862 CANTEEN – CINCINNATI  DEPOT – COMPLETE BROWN JEAN CLOTH COVERING AND FULL LENGTH ORIGINAL SLING WITH LEGIBLE MAKER AND US INSPECTOR INK STAMPS – VERY NICE SPECIMEN:  This Civil War issue Pattern 1862 Canteen features the smooth sided design.  The very nice condition suggests it may not have been issued, but if it was, it was exposed to very gentle, limited use.    

This canteen presents with the characteristics which identifies it as having been inspected and accepted at the Quartermaster Depot at Cincinnati, Ohio.  The canteens were delivered to the depot without the covers and slings so that the quality and integrity of the canteen could be inspected.  Once the inspection process was completed, the canteen was covered and the sling was attached.  The brown jean cloth covering this canteen is the covering known to have been used at the Cincinnati Depot, and the depot inspectors applied the maker’s name and their inspectors’ acceptance stamp in ink to the sewn cotton sling such as appears on this sling.  And finally, the upper tin sling loops lack the hole for the cork stopper retention chain as seen on the New York Depot canteens.  This omission was intentional and the stopper was held in place with a looped piece of twine.  

The original cotton linen sling is full length, shows no notable soiling, and no wear or fraying along the edges as is so often seen.  Most importantly, the sling still retains both the ink stamped maker’s “WINCHELL, MARSH” and the US inspector’s names.  Both stamps are brightly struck and very legible.  The presence of these stamps is a significant added value as they are more often than not found to be very lightly struck on coarsely woven fabric of the sling to begin with, and then were subjected to the constant friction of being carried which soon wore the stamps away.  The wear left the stamps faint – if they survived at all - and almost impossible to read.  Finding the maker and inspector stamps that have survived enough to be legible such as are present on this sling is quite notable.   

George D. Winchell, Marsh, & Company – one of two Cincinnati manufacturers who held contracts to produce canteens for the army - produced 570,000 canteens between April of 1863 and late summer of 1864.  

The brown “jean” cloth cover is fully intact with all of the seams intact and only a few minor points of wear through the material, likely due to storage through the years.  The body is full form with no significant deformities, holes, or weak points.  There are three shallow rounded dents that can be felt through the material, but they do not affect the appearance of the canteen. The spout is very solid and fully intact where it is mounted on the body of the canteen, and it still retains the original cork stopper in the throat.  All three sling keepers are intact.   

This is a very nice example of a Civil War Canteen, which has survived in very respectable condition and would be almost impossible to upgrade.  Of greatest value is that it has survived in its original configuration and it retains the legible maker’s and inspector’s ink stamps on the sling.  (0366) $675



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