Pictured above is an original Prussian infantry tents mess canteen. This canteen is located in the collection of captured Prussian equipment at Esterhazy Privatstiftung, Forchtenstein castle. The photo was obtained from the following work: Hohrath, Daniel. The Uniforms of the Prussian Army under Frederick the Great from 1740 to 1786. Vienna: Verlag Militaria, 2011. Print.
Each six man tent squad (Kameradschaft) was given one Zeltflasche (tent flask) or it was sometimes referred to as a feldflasche (field flask). Each of these "canteens" as they might be called were quite large and heavy when full. They could hold almost two quarts of water when full. They were usually carried by one or two members of the tents mess when marching, and would have been available to the whole squad for use. The flask itself is made of a thin sheet metal, which was most likely tin. The flask has a basic "kidney" shape to it. On each side of the flask are two small "arms" or metal loops that are used to hold the shoulder strap in place. The lid was actually a small inverted cup, which could be used to hand out small amounts of water or any other contents of the flask. The flask was usually affixed with a rudimentary strap, which would have been leather, webbing, or string if necessary.
Pictured above is a reproduction field flask or canteen. The canteen is made of tin, and the lid is affixed to the body of the flask with a piece of string. The strap is a simple piece of webbing just small enough to go through the side arms of the flask. The ends of the webbing are overlapped at the bottom and sewn together to make a continuous loop.
Unfortunately, no original surviving drums belonging to the Regiment von Itzenplitz have been discovered. However, the basic design of the “Prussian” drum used by each regiment was approximately the same. Each drum was made of brass, and featured a shield displayed in the center of the drum. The shield featured the royal cypher “FR” for Fredericks Rex. The FR was centered under a crown surrounded by banners, cannons, and other “honors”. The shield was made from a separate piece of sheet brass, and attached to the barrel of the drum. The drum heads were calf skin. The drum would have featured ¼” linen ropes, and the tugs would have been made from cows leather. The drum featured a screw like snare adjustment on one side. The main difference between regimental drums came with the design painted on the rim of the drum. The rim of the drum was made from wood, and painted in varying designs for each regiment. Each company of the regiment would have had 3 drummers (Tambour) assigned to it.
Feldkessel (Field Kettle)
Each soldier would have carried a knapsack or Tornister as it was called in the Prussian service. The tornister was worn on the left side along with the breadbag. The knapsack was used to hold all of the soldiers extra clothing, personal items, and assorted equipment. The tornister would have contained the soldiers extra shirt, fatigue cap, sleeve cuffs, dickey, stockings, eating utensils, wig powder, comb, brushes, etc. etc. The pack is made from "hair on" calf's leather. As seen in the hairless tornister in the Zeughaus Collection the bottom corners are folded together into a box pleat. The front piece is attached to the bottom and sides with a seam and hem into which a piece of simple cut leather piping was inserted as decoration. The shoulder strap and small straps on the front used to secure the pack would have been chamois-tanned leather, which would have been whitened on the outer, hair, side. There are three buckles on the pack: 1 on the shoulder strap to adjust the length, and 2 on the front to secure the lid closed. The buckles are made of blackened iron or could have been made of brass.
Brotbeutel (Bread Bag)
Patronentaschen (Cartridge Box)
The Prussian officers and non-commissioned officers cane was primarily worn as a badge of rank, but could also be utilized to inject enthusiasm into delinquent soldiers as necessary. The cane would have been made of various types of wood and would have varied in length and design. The cane stood approximately as tall as a soldier’s waist if placed on the ground. This height ranged from person to person and would have been shortened or lengthened as necessary. A hole was drilled through the cane just below the top and a simple cord was run through it. The cord was used to hang the cane from the officers or NCOs uniform on his right side from a button. The button would have been on the chest near the shoulder. The cane was hung from this button down the chest. The tops of the canes varied, and could have been made from metal, ivory, wood and other materials. The designs would also have varied based on an NCO or officer’s rank, wealth, and privilege. Several original canes have survived and offer wonderful insights into their design. The original cane above is made from walnut and features a silver top with a simple design. In addition the cane features a monogram on one side just below the top. The cord is leather and tied in a large knot. The cane ends in a silver tip.