PROTOTYPE FOR INDIAN WARS CARTRIDGE BOX BLOCK

$695.00 SOLD

Quantity Available: None

Item Code: 490-5257

Following the Civil War, the U.S. Army pursued a course to test, select, and adopt the best and most practical breechloading arms and associated self-primed metallic ammunition. Along with that, came the need for development or alteration of accompanying accoutrements, especially cartridge boxes.

This is a prototype for a method to repurpose Civil War-era leather cartridge boxes to properly carry Indian War-era metallic cartridges.

The design is simple: a wood block with holes drilled to hold cartridges on opposing sides and a sliding leather strap attached around the perimeter. A brass clasp is used to hold the strap tight.

There is a paper label pasted on the front and back of the block. Written in ink, the label on one side describes how the cartridge block should be used in operation, “When the cartridges are all taken from the top, use the strap to draw out the block and reverse same, drawing the strap through the slide for a handle. / Pat. Applied for. / C. Howlett / No. Manchester Ct.”  The label on the other side has some loss where it was torn to expose Howlett’s name underneath, but explains the reason for the invention: “[…..] is designed for either […..] box or to utilize the large [numb]er of “Regulation Boxes” [now on] hand. The block is designed to fit them and may be forwarded to any point where the boxes may chance to be. No change in the box being required.”

We are currently unable to identify “C. Howlett” of North Manchester, CT, or uncover a U.S. Patent for this invention. “Patent Applied For” does not always mean “Patent Received”. Such was likely the result for this item. Still, it is an interesting attempt to “recycle” something from the large stock pile of material left over from the Civil War for reuse at a later date.  [jet] [ph:L]

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