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March 4, 2008

Foley World War II Canteen Set

Filed under: What's New — Matt Anderson @ 4:45 pm

Canteen setThis humble canteen set, issued by the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II, actually is a remarkable item. The canteen itself was made by the Vollrath Company of Sheboygan, Wisconsin, but the cup was made by the Foley Manufacturing Company of Minneapolis. The pieces were built to standard military specifications so, even though they were made 340 miles apart, the canteen fits inside the cup just as it should.

Prior to the war, Foley established itself as a successful cookware manufacturer. Its signature product, the Foley Food Mill, was an early hand-cranked version of the modern electric food processor. After Pearl Harbor, Foley joined many other U.S. companies in turning over its production facilities to wartime use. Given Foley’s experience with kitchen components, it was only natural that it be selected to produce canteens and mess kits for American soldiers overseas.

The canteen set is a welcome addition to the collection, and it reminds us of the many crucial efforts made on the home front during the struggle of 1941-1945.

Cup handle, reads “U.S. / FOLEY MFG. CO. / 1944″Matt Anderson, Objects Curator

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