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Re: 1888 Trapdoor

Posted by John on Thursday, 12 November 2015, at 11:38 p.m., in response to 1888 Trapdoor, posted by Jordan Bishop on Thursday, 12 November 2015, at 9:46 p.m.

The markings are almost certainly from the 12th New York Volunteer Infantry, circa 1898.

The 12th NY was mustered in to federal service May 13, 1898. They bounced around training camps, missing the war in Cuba, but arrived there January 1, 1899 to serve as occupation forces. They started back home on March 22, 1899 and were discharged on April 20, 1899, with total time in service a little over 11 months. Some Spanish American War era units severed for as few as 6 months, and some as long as 18 months, depending on where they went.

New York units were almost unique in aggressively applying neat unit markings to their arms, with very neat stamps, often with very large numbers for the regiment, and a smaller serial type number on the right side of the butt. Above the buttplate there would often be a company letter and another "soldier number".

A few other states also marked their arms, but most federal troops observed the Ordnance Department's rule that no unit marks were to be applied to arms.

Hope that helps.


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