RARE MANN’S PATENT 60-ROUND INFANTRY CARTRIDGE BOX

$595.00 SOLD

Quantity Available: None

Item Code: 1043-65

The army had long recognized the medical drawbacks of soldiers carrying full cartridge boxes and other accoutrements on waist belts. William Mann, an officer in the 7th Michigan Cavalry, patented a system in late 1863 for both cavalry and infantry that distributed the weight more evenly and place the burden mainly on the shoulders rather than the waist and groin. This is a very scarce example of the Mann’s patent 60-round box for infantry that was produced in both 40 and 60-round versions in 1864. C.S. Storms had supplied the initial contracts, but Emerson Gaylord, the maker of this box, started his contracts on July 25, 1864, with a contract for 10,000 infantry boxes in this 60-round configuration.

This box is complete with its shoulder slings, which are usually missing, and the Bush patent magazine tin. The latter utilized sliding tins that enabled the soldier by means of a small finger ring to raise up the two reserve packs of cartridges from the bottom of the box once he had expended the upper rounds. The box is taller than the 40-round versions and has an implement pouch mounted high up on the front. The Bush tin is complete and functional.

The box still has its two shoulder slings, which have usually broken off in line with the top edge of the box and have been discarded. In this case they did break but someone thought to retain them and the collector mended them with a matching leather patch on the rear of each that is hardly noticeable. Mann intended the straps to better support the weight of the box. Both straps are full length and still have the flat adjusting hooks that would pass through the upper D-rings mounted on the Mann’s patent waist belt and hook back on themselves to adjust the fit. Both straps also have the riveted leather chapes that originally held small hooks at breast height to secure the straps of the Mann’s patent knapsack. These packs, however, seem to have never made it into the field with the other Mann’s gear and it is not surprising to see the hooks removed.

The riveted latch tab is in place on the cover of the box and the embossed US in an oval is clear, though the small impressed Mann’s patent information between the two border lines of the oval is visible, but tougher to make out. The finish shows alligatoring and crazing overall but not much loss. There are some scattered white dots from wax arising naturally from the leather.

Units such as the 4th Maine, 15th New Jersey and 2nd New Jersey are known to have been issued Mann’s infantry accoutrements. The 95th Pennsylvania, Baxter’s Zouaves, seems to have received them in late 1864, and there is a great photo of a soldier in the 49th Pennsylvania sporting a 60-round Mann’s rig as well. Mann’s patent gear is scarce and this configuration of infantry box is rare, doubly so with all the elements present.

This is a scarce cartridge box rig produced in time to see action in the war and was part of the effort to more efficiently and comfortably equip soldiers in the field. It would be a key piece in a collection of infantry gear.  [sr]

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

THIS ITEM, AS WITH ALL OTHER ITEMS AVAILABLE ON OUR WEB SITE,

MAY BE PURCHASED THROUGH OUR LAYAWAY PROGRAM.

FOR OUR POLICIES AND TERMS,

CLICK ON ‘CONTACT US’ AT THE TOP OF ANY PAGE ON THE SITE,

THEN ON ‘LAYAWAY POLICY’.

THANK YOU!

Inquire About RARE MANN’S PATENT 60-ROUND INFANTRY CARTRIDGE BOX

should be empty

featured item

NORTH CAROLINA IN THE WAR BETWEEN THE STATES, PARTS 1 & 2

By John A. Sloan, late Captain of Company B, 27th North Carolina Regiment, Army of North Virginia. Published by Rufus H. Darby, Washington. 1883. 2 parts, in wraps, 10 x 6.75”. 170 pp. combined, with rosters. Beige covers, part I, red cover covers… (959-38). Learn More »

Upcoming Events

19
Jul

Coming up: Richmond, VA Civil War Show, 7/20 - 7/21 Learn More »