8th CONNECTICUT, COMPANY C, 1861 PATTERN CARTRIDGE BOX BY BOYD & SONS

$895.00 SOLD

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Item Code: 2021-715

This is a company and regimentally marked 1861 pattern .58 Caliber infantry cartridge box. It bears a dead-real stencil on the inside of the flap identifying it as property of Co. C, 8th Connecticut Volunteers, a unit with service in a number of eastern battles. The box also has a beautiful maker’s stamp on the inner flap reading, “J. BOYD & SONS / BOSTON / MANUFACTURERS OF ARMY ACCOUTREMENTS.” The Boyd firm was in business from 1818 to at least 1885 as saddlers and army accoutrements were a natural extension. The firm gained its first army contract as early as 1845 and dealt with the U.S. government as well as various states.

The box is the regulation 1861 pattern infantry cartridge box for .58 caliber rifle muskets, utilizing loops for both shoulder sling and waist belt, with the latter secured by rivets, and with a latch tab on the outer flap held by a line of stitching only. The inner flap with side ears is in place, as is the implement pocket with flap and tab, and both magazine tins. The main latch tab is full length and secure. One of the bottom buckles to hold the sling billets is missing. The other is in place. The oval U.S. cartridge box plate is in place on the outer flap, secured by two short leather thongs on the inside. The outer flap shows some finish loss and wrinkling at the lower corners from flexing- an indicator of field use from a soldier pulling up the flap by the edges to get at his cartridges. The rest of the finish has good color, though around the cartridge box plate are a number of slender cuts or slashes that are very intentional and perhaps done by an idle soldier to imitate a starburst around the US cartridge box plate, though his work may have been cut short by the company first sergeant and subsequent assignment to numerous fatigue details.

Nicely stenciled on the inside of the outer flap is: “Co C / 8th CONN / VOLS.” The regiment was organized at Camp Buckingham, Hartford, in September, 1861 , and in November reached Annapolis, where it joined Burnside’s Coastal Expedition. It was present at the Battle of Roanoke Island in February and helped take Newbern in March, suffering their first battle losses, after which they took part in the siege of Fort Macon. They subsequently were posted to Virginia and were stationed at Fredericksburg, before it was abandoned by Federal troops, and Washington. In September 1862 they were heavily engaged at Antietam, losing one hundred and ninety-four in killed, wounded, and missing. Six weeks later they were again at Fredericksburg, but spared serious loss in the fighting.

From March through December 1863 they were posted at Suffolk and Portsmouth, taking part in expeditions and seeing some minor action. In April 1864, as part of the 18th Corps, they joined the Army of the James and participated in the battles of Walthall Junction, Drewry's Bluff, Cold Harbor, Petersburg, and Fort Harrison, after which the 18th Corps was divided and the regiment assigned to the 24th Army Corps. They were mustered out on the 12th of  December, 1865, after four years and two months' service, during which they lost 8 officers and 112 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded and accrued battle honors of, Newbern, N. C., March 14, 1862; Siege of Fort Macon, N. C., April, 1862; Antietam, Md., Sep. 17, 1862; Fredericksburg, Va., Dec. 13, 1863; Fort Huger, Va., April 19, 1863; Walthall Junction, Va., May 7, 1864; Fort Darling, Va., May 16, 1864; Petersburg, Va., August 25, 1864; and, Fort Harrison, Va., Sep. 29, 1864.

This is a nicely identified cartridge box carried in a unit that saw active service. It also displays very well, showing both the regimental marking and the impressive Boyd maker’s mark when the outer flap is open.   [sr] [ph:m]

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