Cartridge Sewing Kit?


#1

I’m trying to find out more information on the attached items. The have been variously referred to as either sewing kits , or Vesta match containers, which were issued to troops in either the Boer war or WW1. One is known which contains needle and thread, so the sewing kit is correct. On the other hand, the dimples around the rim of the head, are reported to be for striking the matches.
There are supposedly two versions, one brass, for general issue, and the plated one for officer use. There is a possibility the case shown is a composite of both types.

Any information would be appreciated.

Cheers

John


#2

Gee what a great item. It looks MH parentage?

New to me that’s for sure.


#3

Some years ago, I ran into a sewing kit in a container which resembled a .577 Snyder bulleted cartridge. It wasn’t mine but I did examine it. It contained several small spools of thread of different colors and a few needles of different sizes. That’s all I remember. I doubt it was military issue, but something which might have been sold to military personnel to carry in their kit.


#4

CARTRIDGES OF THE WORLD, 1ST AND 2ND EDITIONS, SHOW ONE OF THESE SEWING KITS AT THE END OF CHAPTER 13. I DON’T PUT A LOT OF STOCK IN BRASS FINISH FOR ENLISTED AND NICKELED FINISH FOR OFFICERS. THESE WERE NOT ISSUED ITEMS THEREFORE YOU COULD BUY WHICHEVER YOUR BUDGET ALLOWED OR YOUR TASTE DICTATED, AT LEAST THAT’S WHAT I BELIEVE. THEY ARE NOT A COMMON ITEM AND NOT SEEN IN A LOT OF COLLECTIONS.


#5

John, the few references that I have about this item describe it as a match container that was prepared by Colonial Ammunition Co. to be given as a souvenir to the members of the South Australian Mounted Rifles. This happened late on October 1899, so it was given to them before their first departure on November 2, 1899.

Also, another match container made from a Snider case (sic) is described as one of the items displayed by CAC at the Auckland Industrial and Mining Exhibition of 1898.

A wonderful item, thanks a lot for posting its pictures.

Regards,

Fede


#6

GWB:
Correct, they were not issued items. I believe they were gifts and as such there could be two finishes. Footscray did many years later, manufacture 9mm keyrings with two finishes. Plated for VIPs and brass for ordinary mortals. There may be no connection but there was a precedent.

DennisK:
I have heard of a CAC Snider article which is a sewing kit, however have not been able to track one down.

Pete,
Quite correct, it is built like a .45 Martini Henry.

Fede,

I have tracked down only three of these. Only one has any contents, which is a sewing kit. I was also told they were given to the troops going over to the Boer war which would be in line with CAC’s policy, remembering that CAC donated 1,000,000 rounds of .303 ammunition to the troops at the beginning of WW1.
I was also told they were filled with Vestas.
Whatever the truth, it may be difficult to learn, but one good thing is to put it on forums and hope for some creditable references.

Thanks you all for your replies. I’ll add to this if I am able.

Cheers

John


#7

John, I’ll send you copy of the newspaper articles mentioning such an item to your mail. Regards, Fede.


#8

Thank you, Fede


#9

I found this at an antique fair a few years ago. No headstamp, but looks like part of a .50 BMG case or something similar. No idea of it’s origin! Any opinions?

Also saw a sterling silver .577 Snider case, sewing kit, but unfortunately couldn’t afford the ZAR 2000, 30 years ago, during my student years!


#10

That cartridge could well be a .50 BMG case. South African .50 BMG cartridges that I have seen have a three-stake crimp holding the primer cap in. It appears that the headstamp has been polished off.


#11

Pablo,

That is a nice sewing kit, and I guess it’s of relatively recent origin, going by the “Quick unpick” in the contents.

.577 Snider silver kit: I’d heard of them, never seen one, don’t know of anyone with one, but information from Fede confirmed that CAC New Zealand manufactured a .577 Snider kit in solid silver. They were often given out as prizes in shooting competitions. Perhaps the one you saw was one of those.

Cheers

John


#12

Been lurking here for some time, first post.
About a year ago at a flea market , I found a cartridge/container like the one I remember from “Cartridges of the world”. The bullet screws off , and it looks like a 577 cart. Trouble is some dummy cut it down the side to keep stamps in! I bought it anyhow, and as soon as I find out how to post pics, will do so.
Thanks for the great site .
John


#13

Hi John,

Glad to see you starting to post.
Will look forward to seeing your Snider kit when you get to post the photos.

Cheers

John