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MODEL 1904 CANTEEN WITH THE ORIGINAL ARSENAL SEWN MODEL 1907 STRAP – THE US ARMY’S LAST OVOID CANTEEN – AN EXCELLENT “LIKE NEW” SPECIMEN:  Introduced in the 1905 dated Ordnance Department Manual Horse Equipments and Equipments for Officers and Enlisted Men, and manufactured at the Rock Island Arsenal, this canteen was issued to the early 20TH Century US Army soldiers as the Model 1904 Canteen, and was issued to mounted and foot soldiers alike.    

Initially, the Model 1904 Canteen retained the same triangular hangers which had been in use during the Indian and Spanish American Wars.  In 1907, the arsenals adopted the “Y” shaped web hanger seen here which was sewn directly to the rear cover, eliminating the need for the triangular hangers.  When introduced, this arrangement was intended for issue to foot troops who attached the canteen via the snap to one of the grommets arrayed along the bottom of their Model 1903 Pocketed Cartridge Belts.  In practice, this canteen was also issued to mounted troops who could attach the canteen to the equipment rings on their saddles and then move the canteen to their cartridge belts when dismounted.   

The body of the canteen holds it ovoid shape on the front and the rear surface has the distinctive round dimple correct for the Model 1904 Canteen, with no dents from abuse or other damage.  The original cork stopper and brass chain are present, with the cork body retaining its full form.       

The front cover bears a bright and legible stencil “US”, indicating this canteen was intended to be issued to a regular army soldier.   The bottom center of the front cover is stenciled with a fully legible “R.I.A.  1910”, indicating the cover was produced at the Rock Island Arsenal in 1910.  Given the introduction of the Model 1910 Canteen soon after the adoption of this sewn carrier strap arrangement, this canteen may well represent one of the last production run of these ovoid canteens and covers.  The seams are all intact and the cover is very solid with no wear or damage, and only the very slightest soiling from storage.  Likewise, the canteen strap is in the same “like new” unissued condition, showing no evidence of having been issued or used.  The web material is clean and bright, and the brass snap hook still retains its arsenal applied darkened finish.   

Issued to all soldiers, mounted and dismounted, this combination of the Model 1904 Canteen made without the triangular strap hangers and the sewn-on Pattern 1907 “Y” shaped folded webbing strap represents the last of the ovoid canteens which were issued to U.S. Army soldiers.  This is an excellent specimen of a fairly scarce US Army canteen – one which would be almost impossible to upgrade, and it will make a nice addition to display on your Model 1904 McClellan Saddle or on one of the early 20TH Century Mills Cartridge Belts.  SOLD



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