Author Topic: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight  (Read 1469 times)

Offline Delmonico

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Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« on: February 27, 2019, 04:56:54 pm »
Posted this on the GAF page also.


Ok, going to do a lecture tonight on Civil War rations in the Union Army, will do on on the Confederate Army another time.

Got my props ready, of course they wouldn't be nicely bagged up, the soldier put them in his haversack how ever he could.

First picture is garrison ration for one day.

22 oz loaf of soft bread when available.

3/4 pound of pork, either salt pork or bacon

2/3 cup dry beans or peas.

2 tablespoons vinegar.

1/3 cup sugar.

1/6 cup salt.

1.6 oz green coffee.

1 oz cube of dried and pressed vegetables if available.  The commissary was out today.

These were called desicated or as the soldiers called them desicrated.

Second picture is the marching ration, no beans or vegtables were issued and 1 pound of hard bread was issued athough this was also sometimes issued in camp.

So here is your daily ration, go forth and prepare it and enjoy.
Mongrel Historian


Always get the water for the coffee upstream from the herd.

Ab Ovo Usque ad Mala

The time has passed so quick, the years all run together now.

Offline Niederlander

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2019, 05:47:48 pm »
Not quite as easy to use as an MRE.........
"There go those Nebraskans, and all hell couldn't stop them!"

Offline Delmonico

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2019, 09:51:43 pm »
Went good, they wanted a 20-30 minute program and 5-10 minutes for questions.  Well 45 minutes give or take and about a 1/2 hour of questions. ;D

Connecting all the dots time went from The Spanish Inqustion to WWII.   Kinda like that show TLC had about 30 years ago called connections that did the same thing.
Mongrel Historian


Always get the water for the coffee upstream from the herd.

Ab Ovo Usque ad Mala

The time has passed so quick, the years all run together now.

Offline Delmonico

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2019, 09:53:44 pm »
Oh they want me to do another one next fall/ winter on Confederate rations and substitutes.  Need to do a bit of digging and note taking.
Mongrel Historian


Always get the water for the coffee upstream from the herd.

Ab Ovo Usque ad Mala

The time has passed so quick, the years all run together now.

Offline Coal Creek Griff

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2019, 10:15:28 pm »
That's great! I love passing on knowledge like that. I appreciated your photos too--it help me visualize the rations. Thanks.

CC Griff
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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #5 on: Today at 07:01:06 pm »

Offline ol coot

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2019, 06:22:14 am »

  Good to see your still able, and enjoying yourself my friend.  ;)
My Lord is my shepard, my bible is my guide, my horse is my partner, my colt's on my side.  
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Offline Pitspitr

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2019, 09:36:00 am »
That's awesome Glen. Who did you give the talk to?
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Offline Delmonico

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2019, 12:03:45 pm »
Group called Civil War Round Table.
Mongrel Historian


Always get the water for the coffee upstream from the herd.

Ab Ovo Usque ad Mala

The time has passed so quick, the years all run together now.

Offline Buffalo Creek Law Dog

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2019, 08:48:11 pm »
What kind of containers did they use to carry the rations, obviously they didn't have plastic bags. Just wondering.
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Offline Delmonico

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2019, 09:42:34 pm »
Their haversack, it all kinda got dumped in unless you could improvise something.
Mongrel Historian


Always get the water for the coffee upstream from the herd.

Ab Ovo Usque ad Mala

The time has passed so quick, the years all run together now.

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #10 on: Today at 07:01:06 pm »

Offline Blair

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2019, 12:56:42 pm »
If there were no means available to "improvise", how did the troops keep things like Salt, Sugar, Vinegar, Green coffee beans, Beans or Peas separated? Were all of these items simply "dumped" into the haversack along with the greasy meat?
Just wondering?
My best,
 Blair
A Time for Prayer.
"In times of war and not before,
God and the soldier we adore.
But in times of peace and all things right,
God is forgotten and the soldier slighted"
by Rudyard Kipling.
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Offline Buffalo Creek Law Dog

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2019, 01:48:26 pm »
Their haversack, it all kinda got dumped in unless you could improvise something.

Interesting, thanks. 
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Offline Coal Creek Griff

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2019, 02:03:40 pm »
I'll preface this by saying that this is pure speculation, but I've always imagined that cloth bags and oilcloth was generally available for tasks such as that. Okay, enough speculation.

CC Griff
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Offline Pitspitr

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2019, 02:18:46 pm »
If there were no means available to "improvise", how did the troops keep things like Salt, Sugar, Vinegar, Green coffee beans, Beans or Peas separated? Were all of these items simply "dumped" into the haversack along with the greasy meat?
Just wondering?
My best,
 Blair

Things like sugar, salt, beans, and coffee beans were put in little canvas ration bags


After 1872 the army issued "meat cans" for carrying their unsliced bacon in

 It kept dirt of the meat, but the lid leaked and didn't keep the haversack clean. It was also pretty useless for eating from or cooking in. In 1874 a different design was adopted which was more useful, but still leaked grease in warm weather

M-1874 Type I

1874 Type III

I remain, Your Ob'd Servant,
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Grand Army of the Frontier
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Offline Delmonico

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2019, 02:35:56 pm »
Yes, a lot of accounts though of those not being available and having to dump it altogether.  We discussed that a bit.  A lot of these guys have read more diaries and letters than I have and it was a common complaint.

Read one account of a guy listed as dead who wasn't and was not allowed to draw rations till it was confirmed it was him. 
Mongrel Historian


Always get the water for the coffee upstream from the herd.

Ab Ovo Usque ad Mala

The time has passed so quick, the years all run together now.

Offline Delmonico

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #15 on: March 01, 2019, 02:47:18 pm »
Oh by the way, the peas mentioned were not garden aka English peas, but field peas aka cow peas.  Either black eyed, white eyed, Crowder, purple pod or one of the other variations. 

Kind of blows that old story of eating them down South on New Year's cause Uncle Billy's troops were too dumb to know they were edible.  Also they were common north and south as food for horses and mules and they had plenty of them to feed.

Spent part of my spare time a few years ago, think I have it figgered out, way to long to type and explain on my tablet and my desktop ain't working right now so I can't get to my notes on it or the two back up flash thingys.

Be a good day way to waste 10 minutes or so at the Muster some evening.

Where it comes from will surprise you as well as how it got to the area around Georgia.  Just remember "No one expects the Spanish Inqustion."
Mongrel Historian


Always get the water for the coffee upstream from the herd.

Ab Ovo Usque ad Mala

The time has passed so quick, the years all run together now.

Offline Blair

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #16 on: March 01, 2019, 03:43:10 pm »
Thank you all for your replies.
I knew of the ration bags when I posted.
They could either be issued by the Quarter Master (not commissary) or purchased from the Regimental Sutler (with rations) and marked with contents of the bags. Such dealings would be subtracted from the trooper pay on payday.
My best,
 Blair
A Time for Prayer.
"In times of war and not before,
God and the soldier we adore.
But in times of peace and all things right,
God is forgotten and the soldier slighted"
by Rudyard Kipling.
Blair Taylor
Life-C 21

Offline Grenadier

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #17 on: March 02, 2019, 02:24:14 pm »
I’ve read at least one account where soldiers would wrap rations in bits of paper and cloth.

Offline Delmonico

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Re: Doing a lecture on Civil War rations tonight
« Reply #18 on: March 02, 2019, 02:43:16 pm »
Yep, what ever you could come up with.
Mongrel Historian


Always get the water for the coffee upstream from the herd.

Ab Ovo Usque ad Mala

The time has passed so quick, the years all run together now.

 

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