6 1/2" x 4" x 1 1/4" Union Army all leather, cartridge belt with "U S" stamped on the front panel. Opens to 20 heavy canvas cartridge loops (10 per side), in very good condition, with closure strap and belt loops in leather and in very good serviceable condition. Because the 500-grain Model 1881 rifle cartridge already being used by the infantry was approximately 1/4" longer than its predecessor employing a 405-grain bullet, Major Alfred Mordecai, Commander Watervliet Arsenal, recommended that the height of the box be increased immediately to accommodate the longer cartridge. On February, 1883, the chief of ordnance approved the dimensions of the box would be changed forthwith. Therefore the modified box was identical to the second type except that it measured approximately 3 1/2" tall. The Type 3 box can be confirmed by measuring the distance between the two lines of stitching on the front: 2 3/4," as opposed to 2 1/2" for earlier McKeevers. The length of the belt loops was also increased in accordance with the height of the box. All boxes of the third type had belt loops 3 3/8" long, with 2 3/4" in the clear to accept the leather waist belt.
Inventory Number: 45028