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Thread: Yankee army rations

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2012

    Default Yankee army rations

    Hello all. I have done some searches, but can not find what I am looking for. I am looking for a compleat list of the goods and the amount each soldier was issued. I have found the food items, but not the items such as candles, soap, clothing, and equipment. Can anybody please help?
    Caleb Courtney
    30th Indiana Vol.

    "dont judge people by what they say...judge them by what they mean by it"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Near Hanover, PA


    I spread the information over several websites where you posted...
    Eli Heagy
    187th PV

    The 137th NY performed way, way better than the 20th Maine at Gettysburg. They just didn't have a self promoting blow hard of a Col. leading them. Maybe you should look up the history of the 83rd Pennsylvania too, they make the 20th Maine look like the rookies they were.
    There are some very good books out there about the fighting on Culps and Lower Culps Hill. Vincent's Brigade had nothing on those boys at the other end of the line.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Columbus, OH


    Keep in mind that what and when items were supposed to be issued and what and when it actually got issued were two different things. A lot depended upon where you were stationed, when during the war you're talking about, and several other variables. Federal supply improved greatly over the course of the war, but even then there were places that didn't get regular issues of everything.
    Bernard Biederman
    30th OVI
    Co. B

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Burke, VA


    I was reading the second link and did find one interesting element. They were discussing the item "essence of coffee". They described it as concentrated coffee that looked like axle grease (which I believe was what the soldiers sometimes called it) with their added note that it must have tasted like what it resembled. We tried making some many years ago and found the product made pretty decent coffee. I've forgotten where we found the recipe but it makes one wonder whether it was just something strange to the author and was dismissed out of hand.

    A point should be made about the pork ration. There were several different grades of salt pork and military grade was one of them. But salt port was not fatback as is sometimes assumed.

    Just a couple of things I picked up in a quick skim.
    Michael Mescher
    visit us at:
    Ragged Soldier Sutlery

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    off the bottom of the scale


    Pretty much everything you wanted to know about rations can be found in this 101 page thread : You just have to find it. Of course, in looking for one thing, you find other things about which wondered.
    - Silas Tackitt

    "I consider him a humbug, a man of small capacity, very obstinate, not at all chivalrous, exceedingly conceited, and totally selfish." - - Lafayette McLaws about James Longstreet.

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