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Rock Island Arsenal Dates with Letter Codes


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I have a few items from the 1909 to 1912 era that were made at Rock Island Arsenal and below the date have a letter. I have a canteen markeked RIA/1909/M and a shovel cover marked RIA/1910/G. Does anyone have any documentation as to what the letter codes were for?

 

 

 

Thanks

Jon P

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Another qustion on the same line as this would be, what other letter codes have people seen.

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Another qustion on the same line as this would be, what other letter codes have people seen.

 

Jon,

 

I am not sure but I have seen different letters on the 1903 canteen recovers with the concave backs. I would be interested in knowing about them as well. I have always thought they may have been inspector marks.

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OK next question, same subject. What letters have people seen beneath the RIA and date.

Without data, your just another person with an opinion...................

 

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Some of the markings on my stuff:

 

1878 pattern Blanket Bag 1909 G

M1905 Shovel cover 1910 G

M1907 First Aid Pouch 1910 G

Round Canteen 1910 M

M1908 Haversack 1911 M

M1910 Shovel Cover 1911 M

M1910 Haversack 1911 M

M1911 First Aid Pouch 1911 M

M1910 Canteen Cover 1911 M

Cleaning Rod Case 1911 B or R?

M1910 Canteen Cover 1912 M

M1910 First Aid Pouch 1913 B or R?

M1910 Canteen Cover 1913 B

M1910 Shovel Cover 1914 B

 

I don't think these are inspector marks as they appear to be part of the date stamp and there are inspectors initials on some of these pieces. At first I thought they might refer to the shops at Rock Island Arsenal but after looking at them they appear to line up by year (sort of). I wonder if they might be related to the fiscal year of the contract? For instance I see 1910 has a "G" and an "M". The date would be the actual date it was manufactured but the letter would refer to the fiscal year budget? Just a theory. I've never been able to find a definitive answer.

 

Tim

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I have in my collection

 

M1910 Shovel Cover 1910 G

M1908 Haversack 1914 B NGP in place of US

M1908 Haversack 1911 M PA in place of US

M1907 Canteen 1911 M

M1907 Canteen 1914 B No US

M1900 Canteen 1913 M (this may be a recover)

 

Blanket Bag 1909 G with US Marked on the back UTAH 4. My inital thought is that this may have been made for the US Navy. The US Army stopped using the blacket bag a few years before this date. (as far as I know)

RIA production reports of Blanket Bags in the two fiscal years that covered the calander year 1909 (1909 and 1910) list manufactures of 3,000 Blanket Bags khaki for USMC in fiscal 1909 and 3,640 Blanket Bags khaki stamped USMC and 13,280 Blanket Bags, OD in Fiscal 1910.

 

From other posts on the Forum

M1900 Canteen 1909 G USMC

M1910 Canteen Cover 1911 M

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So here are some thoughts about what the letter code is

 

Inspector

Part of year code

Building (shop)within the arsenal code

Departmentb or govenment agency code M-militia, G-other government, B-usmc

 

 

Put your thinking caps on

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I think part of the answer may lie in the fact that there are many items produced in the same period that did not have the letter suffix stamped on them.

 

RC

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

*Sherlock Holmes in "A Scandal in Bohemia"*

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Wells, upon further investigation, its not a code for the shop at RIA. Rock Islands shops/buildings were lettered, but did not go up to M until 1917. If its a letter code for the month, there are 13 months in the year since M is the 13th letter in the alphabet. Does anyone out there have a USMC marked 1909 or 1910 blanket bag? If so, does it have a date code letter? Does anyone have an idea who would have used the blanket bag in 1909? Were medic types issued them before they began to use the M1912 ration Bag? The non USMC marked ones went to someone. Navy? Medics? Signal Corps? US Forest Service?

Without data, your just another person with an opinion...................

 

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Ok, how about we try to sort by item and see what we come up with?

 

Anyone with canteens from RIA dated between 1903-1909 what does it say and does it have the letter or not?

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

*Sherlock Holmes in "A Scandal in Bohemia"*

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Ok, how about we try to sort by item and see what we come up with?

 

Anyone with canteens from RIA dated between 1903-1909 what does it say and does it have the letter or not?

 

Meant to say include other items too, like the intrenching tool cover etc.

 

won't let me edit. :unsure:

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

*Sherlock Holmes in "A Scandal in Bohemia"*

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  • 6 years later...

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