canteen
VIEW ALL PHOTOS (5)

From the collection of the National Park Service, National Mall and Memorial Parks.

canteen

CATALOG NUMBER

VIVE 11256

ACCESSION DATE

11/07/1995

ITEM SUMMARY

Canteen. A handwritten inscription upon the exterior surface of the canteen is addressed to, "Rick", is signed, "Fredrick W. Pepper / USN / 1969 - 1973", and indicates that it was left at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (VVM) during the occasion of a, "MARCHE [sic] ON DC. 95 / FOR OUR HERO'S [sic]." An excerpt of the inscription reads, "When you should have been worried about your next date you died [...] I was spared. / You were not. / Today I marche [sic] to fight a different war. / One to save those who our country has abandoned [...] I will never forget you or them." The artifact was left at The Wall by U.S. Navy and Vietnam veteran Fredrick W. Pepper during a March on Washington, D.C. between September - November 1995.

ITEM DESCRIPTION

CANTEEN. THE OBJECT CONSISTS OF A CANTEEN COMPRISED OF A CIRCULARLY SHAPED, SHEET METAL HOOP CIRCUMSCRIBING THE CIRCUMFERENTIAL EDGE OF A CIRCULARLY SHAPED, FLAT SIDED DRINKING VESSEL COMPRISED OF WHITE POLY-PLASTIC WITH A CYLINDRICALLY SHAPED OPENING TRAVERSING THE CENTER. THE POLY-PLASTIC DRINKING VESSEL BEARS A CIRCULARLY SHAPED, SCREW TOP OPENING FITTED WITH A BLACK POLY-PLASTIC SCREW CAP AT THE UPPER OBJECT SURFACE, WHICH ITSELF IS CONNECTED TO THE SHEET METAL HOOP VIA A SHORT LENGTH OF METAL LINK CHAIN AND TWO (2) METAL (POSSIBLY STEEL [?]) BRADS. NUMEROUS OVOID-SHAPED METAL LOOPS ARE EMBEDDED AT REGULAR INTERVALS INTO THE EXTERIOR SURFACE OF THE CIRCUMFERENTIAL METAL HOOP,THROUGH WHICH IS PRESENTLY STRUNG A CARRYING STRAP COMPRISED OF YELLOW, BLACK, & GRAY STRIPED NYLON FABRIC AFFIXED AT THE ENDS INTO A COMPLETE LOOP VIA FOUR (4) METAL BRADS. A CONTINUOUS FABRIC REMNANT (INCLUDING VISIBLE STITCHING) OF THE CLOTH COVERING WHICH PREVIOUSLY ADORNED THE EXTERIOR SURFACES OF THE POLY-PLASTIC DRINKING VESSEL IS VISIBLE IN THE SPACE BETWEEN THE WHITE POLY-PLASTIC AND THE CIRCUMFERENTIAL METAL HOOP AT BOTH THE OBVERSE AND REVERSE OBJECT SURFACES. AN INSCRIPTION IS HANDWRITTEN UPON THE WHITE POLY-PLASTIC IN BLACK MARKER AND BLOCK SCRIPT/ARABIC NUMERALS AT BOTH THE OBVERSE AND REVERSE OBJECT SURFACES OF THE CANTEEN. THE INSCRIPTION IS ADDRESSED TO, "RICK", IS SIGNED, "FREDRICK W. PEPPER / USN / 1969 - 1973", AND INDICATES THAT THE ITEM WAS LEFT AT THE VIETNAM VETERANS MEMORIAL (VVM) ON THE OCCASION OF THE, "MARCHE [sic] ON DC. 95 / FOR OUR HERO'S [sic]". IN CONTENT, THE AUTHOR OF THE INSCRIPTION DESCRIBES THE ORIGIN OF THE CANTEEN; I.E. "IT WAS GIVEN TO ME BY A GUY WHO WAS IN THE AIR CAV" AND NOTES THAT, "I KNOW NOW I WOULDN'T HAVE MADE IT WITHOUT IT." THE AUTHOR PROCEEDS TO RECALL DRINKING WINE WITH RICK AT A HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR BREAKFAST AND CHOOSING TO JOIN THE NAVY INSTEAD OF THE MARINES WHEN THE TWO (2) MEN ENLISTED, AS A CONSEQUENCE OF A PEACE PROTEST OUTSIDE THE MILITARY RECRUITMENT CENTER. THE AUTHOR OF THE INSCRIPTION GOES ON TO STATE THAT, "I WAS SPARED. / YOU WERE NOT" AND NOTES THAT THE HE HAS LEFT THE ITEM AT THE WALL AS PART OF A MARCH ON WASHINGTON, D.C., "[...] TO SAVE THOSE WHO OUR COUNTRY HAS ABANDONED." THE INSCRIPTION CLOSES WITH THE LINES, "MY PROMICE [sic] IS TO DO MY BEST JUST LIKE YOU. / I WILL NEVER FORGET YOU OR THEM." ACCORDING TO VIVE CATALOG NOTES PREPARED BY MRCE COLLECTIONS STAFF, THE OBJECT WAS PREVIOUSLY DISPLAYED IN THE COLORADO HISTORIC SOCIETY LOAN EXHIBITION (1997 - 1998), AS WELL AS THE DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS (VA), HOUSTON, TEXAS LOAN EXHIBITION (VVM98).

ACCESSION GROUP

VIVE-00146

RECORD COPONENT QTY

1

ASSOCIATED ITEM TEXT

Text of the handwritten inscription upon the exterior, obverse and reverse object surfaces is transcribed in full, as follows: [Exterior, obverse object surface, handwritten inscriptions] "Rick / I've [illegible] this from just outside Kelso, Washington / It was given to me by a guy who was in the Air Cav. / He made me take it. / I know now I wouldn't have made it without it. / I remember the senior breakfast. / You & I drank whine [sic]. / When you should have been worried about your next date you died. / Remember when we went to the recruiter & there was a peace protest so I joined the Navy instead of the Marines?" / [Exterior, reverse object surface, handwritten inscriptions] "I was spared. / You were not. / Today I marche [sic] to fight a different war. / One to save those who our country has abandoned. / My promice [sic] is to do my best just like you. / I will never forget you or them. / Fredrick W. Pepper / USN / 1969 - 1973 / MARCHE [sic] ON DC. 95 / FOR OUR HERO'S [sic]."

ITEM DIMENSIONS AND WEIGHT

Item Weight: 650.0g
Item Depth: 10.0cm (Thickness) / 24.0cm (Diameter) / 75.4cm (Circumference)