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Thread: Making Civil War items

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Williamstown, W.Va.
    Posts
    43

    Default

    I just checked out EoG and that looks like a basic camp-chest style box, although smaller.

    Judging from the white china/porcelain plate tucked into the back compartment, I'd guess that the chest measures no more than 20"-24" long and maybe 12" wide, and maybe 12"-13" high with the lid closed. Can't quite tell from the photo (wish it was clearer), but the box looks like it's been covered with leather, a guess backed up by the tight rows of tacking around the bottom. Also, the interior has been wallpapered (which was common for chests and trunks). In fact, it's probably the wallpapering that's holding those dividers in place.

    If my guess is accurate, then I'd say the box is constructed with 1/2" or 5/8" stock, and that the dividers in the main box are about 1/4", although the dividers on the left look a bit thinner, maybe 3/16". Some of the dividers in the lift-out tray look a bit thicker, maybe 3/8". However, the lining in the tray doesn't seem to match the wallpaper and it could be felt or some other heavier material that's making those dividers look thicker.

    Speaking of that lift-out lid, I'd guess that it's smaller than the inside of the box. That is, you'd typically expect an insert tray to fit snug and be about the same size as the interior dimensions. But look at those two bottles on the left/front, and the two bottles on the right side -- the necks of the bottles appear to be higher than the dividers. If the tray were the same size as the box interior, those bottles would interfere with putting the tray inside, especially since the tray shape appears to match the level of the dividers. I'm thinking that tray is maybe a couple inches narrow on the front and a couple inches shorter on the right to accommodate those four bottles. (If, indeed, the bottles are part of the kit and not just placed there for photo purposes.)

    Note that the box corners are pretty rigidly reinforced with those tacked-on corner pieces. I'm guessing the box itself is simple butt-joint construction -- if it was dovetailed, there'd be no need for the reinforcing. (Of course, those corner pieces may be there to hold the leather on, and it could be dovetailed or box joints underneath.) Can't tell what material those corner reinforcements are, by the way; they could be thin tin or more leather.

    Without a physical examination of the box, that's about the best I can do. Only so much you can tell from at 4" wide photo. <g>

    A.J.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Pawleys Island, S.C.
    Posts
    215

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    A.J.,

    Thank you for passing along your observations of the chest. Something that I noticed in the photograph is on the removable tray there are two holes cut to allow for the bottle necks to fit through. I am also curious if the section of the tray that sets over the plate is cut out also. It looks like the plate sets up higher than the tray also.
    Tyler Underwood
    Pawleys Island, #409 AFM
    Governor Guards
    SCAR, WIG
    www.scareenactors.com

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Abingdon, Virginia
    Posts
    406

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rufus View Post
    Aj, I am also awaiting the release of your new book. I am also in search of plans/information to make a mess chest. Do you have an idea of where I could start looking.
    Rufus, Robert E. Lee's Chest is on prominent display at the Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond....it contains the actual French mess gear used by by the General during the War. You will find a photo in "The Commanders of the Civil War" (Smithmark) on pages 162-3....also photos of our reproduction on www.logancreekdesigns.com in the Product Gallery. And yes, GREAT photo of the Mess Chest of Major Arthur Johnson (QM on Mahone's staff ANV) on pg. 214 Arms and Equipment of the Confederacy... I would consider making one of these for myself.

    Good hunting.
    As always, OBSVT, Joe Cress..... "General, if they put every man they have......on the field to approach me......just give me plenty ammunition.....I'll kill 'em all.....before they reach my lines."

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    11

    Default Question

    AJ

    Being new to all this can you tell me what EoG is and where I might find it?

    Rickm

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Jonestown, PA
    Posts
    78

    Default Just what Im looking for

    I am currently making a union mechanical bread box, and was looking for a stencil

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Jonestown, PA
    Posts
    78

    Default

    I am just starting to build a bread box. In which I am looking for a stencil. I guess which one to use depends on what period of the war we are doing. Which one was more popular during the war? I have seen a lot of pics with the Mechanical Bread Co on them.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Williamstown, W.Va.
    Posts
    43

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    Josie --- Whatcha think on my guesses as to that mess chest's dimensions and construction?

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Williamstown, W.Va.
    Posts
    43

    Default

    Good eye! I never noticed those two cutouts on the right side. That would tell me that the tray is indeed the full length of the interior of the chest, and those two holes let the bottle necks stick through. Still no telling about the tray width, though, without being able to see down inside it on the left side.

    As to the plate, which also sticks up above the dividers, that narrow compartment at the back of the tray may in fact be a slot that holds the plate in place. If that's the case, you'd be able to extract the plate and put it back without removing the whole tray.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Pawleys Island, S.C.
    Posts
    215

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rickm View Post
    AJ

    Being new to all this can you tell me what EoG is and where I might find it?

    Rickm
    Echos of Glory and you can find it at the link below
    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss...lo%2Caps%2C366
    Tyler Underwood
    Pawleys Island, #409 AFM
    Governor Guards
    SCAR, WIG
    www.scareenactors.com

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Shenandoah Valley
    Posts
    410

    Default

    For stencils, you could probably take the files to a local sign shop and have them cut pretty cheaply. You can also have them cut into vinyl. apply vinyl to box, paint then remove the vinyl... Not too expensive especially if you do multiples

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