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  1. These surplus 1896 pattern hat/cap devices were a common militaria dealer catalog item - and may still be as far as I know. I've seen these with a variety of regimental number / company letter combos, as well as different colored keystone inlays. The are attractive but fall into a period with less interest than the civil war and the world wars. Price wise they tended to be pretty nominal - a couple deades ago you could buy them for around $10 to 20 or so, but today, perhaps a gander on ebay or similar will give you a more up to date value.
  2. The most straight to the point answer to your question is: if you are looking to represent a regular US army infantryman prior to the issue of the Krag rifle & belt in 1895, no, a blue 45/70 mills web belt with an arsenal plate is not correct. Regulars did not wear that combination. Up until companies were issued the Krag and 30/40 blue Mills belts with the 'C' catch fastener, the tan 45/70 belt (sewn ends) with the 1886 plate and wire keepers (not sheet brass) was the regulation US 45/70 belt. What has caused so much confusion here is the plethora of different Mills belt styles made in
  3. Nice! I saw those but my 1st Wash collecting has been on idle a while. In 30 years I have seen a few, from memory with medal groups. The funny thing is those 'period' insignia are the toughest part to find. I have an 1895 tunic to a Captain of one the companies. Still has his signal corps devices and the 'V' letters but he removed the U & S for use on his khakis once he got to the Philippines.
  4. I have probably a 1000 or more photos from the period and a number of them are the ubiquitous camp mess or kitchens. I will keep an eye out. As far as surviving examples hopefully at least one or more did, but those later world war scrap drives were pretty efficient....
  5. From the pics it looks right. 1886 Whittemore plate made at Watervliet arsenal. Someone polished the front up.
  6. A.R. Smith was fairly early inspector, his cartouche is on a lot of Watervliet 1870's-80's ordnance gear. I believe your McKeever is .45/70.
  7. The regular US Army 1886 belt plate is 'way out' for this belt as well. These commercial civilian belts used a brass wire c-catch closure. Although I've seen the commercial / civilian stamped Mills plates (dogs head etc.) on them.
  8. Interesting question as there were so many big events going on those years. I was in high school and felt a sense of 'defeat' & that so much was for naught. Then there was the TV news showing the chaotic air / sea evacuations, which added to the gloom. Flash forward several years and I was working at a furniture place with a humble Vietnamese guy in our crew - older than us - and our boss said Henry here was on one of the last helicopters off the embassy, and, hes on the cover of a news magazine (Newsweek or Time I think). So I find a copy and by God there he is...unmistakeable Flash for
  9. Well that first upload - my first - didn't go so OK as I couldn't remove the oversize file before edit time expired. But there you go. Its from Campaigning In The Phillipines. The photo is from their souvenir roster and reception upon return to Seattle. The 8th corps badge he is wearing in the photo may well be the one that was engraved and in the group.
  10. Looks right down to the lead back crossed rifles. The 1st Ill. had interesting service, arriving in Cuba before hostilities ended. They marched from disembarkation at Siboney up to San Juan Hill outside Santiago, entering the trenches adjacent to the 1st Vol. Cav. Rough Riders. They were in the final skirmishes of July 10-17 before the cease fire. Like most regiments, malaria over the next months turned out to be their worst enemy. I have a grouping from a Co. G soldier. His granddaughter told me he was very ill after returning, the effects lingering for a year or so, but afterwards he was b
  11. Wonderful Phillipine nationalist flag. I have pretty much all the Annual Reports to the Sec. of War for the Phillippine war period 1898-1902. Each one contains an extensive index so when I get time I'll see if anything might be mentioned that would shed some light. Thing is, capturing these flags was pretty common during the war there. Hundreds of small company sized engagements where momentos were gleaned from an abandoned Filipino army nipa hut HQ.
  12. Without a picture I'll hazard a few observations....No length of the belt given but iirc Mills did make belts in sizes including lengths for smaller waists -- with a correspondining reduction of the number of loops. As far as this being only a single row, if the loops are woven and not sewn, its a Mills woven product and likely a state or national guard request or contract. Not likely regular US army unless it was a trial piece. From 1900 until the phase out / replacement by the new Mills pocket patterns, the regular army infantry and artillery wore the tan color, double looped Mills belt wit
  13. If that was the one from the Cowan auction its very likely Capt. Marshall Scudders as the group did contain several engraved veterans badges of his along with the Spanish War Service. The fact that it is an 'No.' and happened to be in the missing swath of numbers shouldn't disuade you as long as the group stays together. He was the Captain of Co. E, 1st Washington (State) Volunteer Infantry and served in the early Philippine war with the regiment. He along with the company are in photographs from the state version of Campaigning In The Phillipines.
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