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Re: Information about my TD

Posted by John Gross on Thursday, 28 April 2011, at 12:35 p.m., in response to Information about my TD, posted by Jeff on Thursday, 28 April 2011, at 11:26 a.m.

I donít know the definitive answer (and I donít think anybody does), but here are my educated guesses.

Number 1: There was no requirement by the military for troops to record/keep track of serial numbers. Such a decision was made at the company or regimental level.

Number 2: Even those units which did keep such records, they were likely disposed of when their useful purpose had ended. For example, if Trapdoors were exchanged for Krags, there was no longer a need to keep the list of TD serial numbers. The records which have survived are from pure luck/coincidence. George Moller, in his forward to MASSACHUSETTS MILITARY SHOULDER ARMS, tells how such records were literally loaded up on two 6x6 National Guard trucks ready to be removed from the the State Capitol Building to make more office space available. Presumably, these trucks were about to go to the "dump" or some other such place and dispose of "an incredible portion of the state's history" when they were stopped at the last minute and the documents preserved.

Number 3: I believe there are more records to be found, but only small batches hidden away here and there in various repositories. I doubt very much if a couple of hundred thousand TD serial numbers are waiting to be found.

John Gross


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