The Civil War Mess Kit
Dig In: This nonregulation Civil War mess kit features a fork, knife, spoon, corkscrew, salt and pepper shaker, and cup enclosed in a mahogany carrying case. The typical kit was much less fancy and looked more like photo #2
A typical mess kit, like this one from Don Tolbert’s personal collection, for soldiers on both sides included coffee, hardtack bread and beans. These staples were cheap and easy to preserve and carry.