Author Topic: Prairie Belts, Mills Belts, Fair Weather Christian Belts, Thimble Belts, etc.  (Read 20130 times)

Offline Hangtown Frye

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Chris;

According to Worman and Garavaglia in "Firearms of the American West, Vol. II", concerning the reports for the field tests on magazine arms:

 "Some units sent no reports in: Companies A and F of the 4th Cavalry, armed with the Hotchkiss and Lee respectively, were in the field against hostile Apaches at the time their reports were due."  The footnote states that this information is from the Report of the Chief of Ordnance for 1886, in the summary of field trials.

Pretty cool, that!

I think it would be a great thing for you to make up a "double belt" like the one pictured.  Like you said, all you need is a pair of Mills belts, two of those weird hooks and the suspension rig and you're ready to go!  That would be just too darned neat.

Cheers!

Gordon

Offline FTrooper

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Thanks Gordo,

Have the book, missed the quote.  As you and I BOTH know, seems information gets forgotten over time!  :(  Will look it up.

SO, what this means is that there was an "F Troop" carrying RL's into compact?  I may have to run with that!  LOL!  ;D

Chris Fischer
F-Troop

Chris Fischer
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Offline Hangtown Frye

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Page 58, BTW, of FotAW Vol. II.

Also, it is of interest that all of the magazine arms issued for field trials were full-length rifles, rather than making up carbines to issue to the Cavalry and the rifles for the Infantry, so those poor buggers chasing Apache's got to haul along rifles.  Although there was a definite advantage in range by using the rifles and .45-70-405's (or maybe even .45-70-500's!) I'm sure that there was commensurate sqwacking from the troopers for the extra weight and length!

Cheers!

Gordon

Offline FTrooper

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Ran with it Gordo...yup, found other sources confirming it.  One 4th Cavalry Troop with the Hotchkiss Rifle (the one that looks like a Lebel almost with a two piece stock), one with Rem.-Lees, and four with second model Hotchkiss Carbines.  Good call!  Also som officers of the 1st Inf. with the Hotchkiss Rifles and one with a Chaffee-Reese show up in images.

Chris Fischer
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Chris Fischer
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Offline Hangtown Frye

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Dang!  And to think that once upon a time I had a 2nd Model Hotchkiss Carbine (traded it for an M1822 Harper's Ferry musket, bayonet and nice repro cartridge box), a Chaffee-Reese rifle, and TWO Remington-Lee's!  Gack!  Oh well. But they were Safe Queens for the most part, but I did shoot all of them at least once!  And at least I've still got a Remington-Lee.

Just as an aside, I DID pack my Hotchkiss Carbine on the film "Geronimo".  There's a good shot of the carbine (though not me, only my knee's) behind Robert Duvall after we burned the Apache village.  So I can "prove" that at least one Cavalry Officer packed a Hotchkiss carbine!   ;D

Thanks for tracking that info down.  Cool stuff!

Cheers!

Gordon

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Offline FTrooper

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Always fun to bounce research back and forth with you Gordo!

Chris Fischer
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Chris Fischer
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Offline Hangtown Frye

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Likewise, my friend!  You always come up with the coolest, weirdest info on things!  I always love that!  ;D

Soo... now we have to come up with detailed descriptions of and documentation for the rarely seen and generally unknown Naval Balloon Signal Squadron used by Miles against Geronimo in the last campaign in Arizona in 1886... or something to that effect, especially if they were armed with Remington-Lee Navy's and DA Colts!  8) 

Cheers!

Gordon

Offline G.W. Strong

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Let's see if I can establish the issued “norm” in a timeline form.

1858-1865 ------------- M1858, M1861 and M1864 Cartridge Boxes for.58 Cal paper cartridges
1865-1875 ------------- M1858, M1861 and M1864 Cartridge Boxes modified to accept 50/70 brass cartridges
1870-1880-------------- M1870 Dyer pouch for 50/50 and 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1873-1902-------------- McKeever Cartridge Box for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1876-1890-------------- M1876 Prairie Belt for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1881-1902-------------- Mills Belt for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1892-1910-------------- McKeever Cartridge Box for 30/40 Brass Cartridges
1892-1910-------------- Mills Belt for 30/40 Brass Cartridges

I know my dates are wrong but I took a stab at it. I have also certainly left out some types like the Hagner boxes and others. Perhaps with all of our knowledge we can expand this to include model numbers and improved date ranges.

Would someone please correct my starting point?
George Washington "Hopalong" Strong
Grand Army of the Frontier #774, (Bvt.) Colonel commanding the Department of the Missouri.
SASS #91251
Good Guy's Posse & Bristol Plains Pistoleros
NCOWS #3477
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Offline Hangtown Frye

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Hazen Loops...  ;)

Cheers!

Gordon

Offline G.W. Strong

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OK, Hazen loops added. All of my dates are just guesses so that will need help.

1858-1865 ------------- M1858, M1861 and M1864 Cartridge Boxes for.58 Cal paper cartridges
1865-1875 ------------- M1858, M1861 and M1864 Cartridge Boxes modified to accept 50/70 brass cartridges
1870-1880-------------- M1870 Dyer pouch for 50/50 and 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1873-1902-------------- McKeever Cartridge Box for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1874-1885---------------M1874 Hazen loops for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1876-1890-------------- M1876 Prairie Belt for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1881-1902-------------- Mills Belt for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1892-1910-------------- McKeever Cartridge Box for 30/40 Brass Cartridges
1892-1910-------------- Mills Belt for 30/40 Brass Cartridges
George Washington "Hopalong" Strong
Grand Army of the Frontier #774, (Bvt.) Colonel commanding the Department of the Missouri.
SASS #91251
Good Guy's Posse & Bristol Plains Pistoleros
NCOWS #3477
Sweetwater Regulators

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Offline FTrooper

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1858-1865 ------------- M1858, M1861 and M1864 Cartridge Boxes for.58 Cal paper cartridges...for infantry
1865-1875 ------------- M1858, M1861 and M1864 Cartridge Boxes modified to accept 50/70 brass cartridges...for infantry
1870-1880-------------- M1870 Dyer pouch for 50/50 and 45/70 Brass Cartridges...experimental/cavalry...then there was the M1874 Pouch
1873-1902-------------- McKeever Cartridge Box for 45/70 Brass Cartridges, not approved and made before 1875.  Also not originally a cavalry item
1876-1890-------------- M1876 Prairie Belt for 45/70 Brass Cartridges-really phased out by the mid 1880's
1881-1902-------------- Mills Belt for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1892-1910-------------- McKeever Cartridge Box for 30/40 Brass Cartridges...the .30cal McKeever is a post 1902 item.  From 1894-1902 the dark blue mills belt was worn, even for full dress!!!
1892-1910-------------- Mills Belt for 30/40 Brass Cartridges..actually 1894 and is gone by about 1907 at the latest.  Even though the army takes a good while to get rid of the Krag carbines, they start issuing the M1903 belts with them.  Troopers just carried the rounds loose in each pocket.

Don't forget the 2 year rule.  The McKeever is the best example.  Not approved by Ordnance Dept. till last week of 1874, not signed off by Secretary of War until first week of 1875, production did not begin in detail until fiscal year 1875-1876 starting in July. and then it was only an infantry item until later.

Other things are that the The pre-1874 Dyers were never fully issued.   Some companies of the 7th Cavalry at LBH still had surplus ACW carbine cartridge boxes.  No evidence that any of them had M1874 Dyers.

There are also the Hagner Type I and Type II of 1872. Originally in .50, later modified to .45  These can still be seen into the very late 1870's, maybe early 1880's.

Chris Fischer
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Chris Fischer
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Offline G.W. Strong

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Here is my latest draft based on Chris's comments. Please provide further adjustment.

1858-1865 ------------- M1858, M1861 and M1864 Cartridge Boxes for.58 Cal paper cartridges (infantry)
1865-1875 ------------- M1858, M1861 and M1864 Cartridge Boxes modified to accept 50/70 brass cartridges (infantry)
1870-1880-------------- M1870 Dyer pouch for 50/50 and 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1872-1880---------------Hagner box for 50/50 and 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1874-1885-------------- M1874 Dyer pouch for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1874-1885---------------M1874 Hazen loops for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1876-1902-------------- McKeever Cartridge Box for 45/70 Brass Cartridges (infantry)
1876-1885-------------- M1876 Prairie Belt for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1881-1902-------------- Mills Belt for 45/70 Brass Cartridges
1894-1907-------------- Mills Belt for 30/40 Brass Cartridges
1902-1910-------------- McKeever Cartridge Box for 30/40 Brass Cartridges (infantry)

George Washington "Hopalong" Strong
Grand Army of the Frontier #774, (Bvt.) Colonel commanding the Department of the Missouri.
SASS #91251
Good Guy's Posse & Bristol Plains Pistoleros
NCOWS #3477
Sweetwater Regulators

 

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