As you all know, in Company D, we love to share "hardcore" reenacting secrets to make a progressive impression more accessible to more reenactors. In living history, the devil is in the details. It's those details that often leave us paying top dollar to makers who have spent a life time of research perfecting their historical reproductions. Most of the time it's absolutely worth it when exceptional skill and flawless research yield unmatched results. But there are times when I think "campaigners" are less than helpful in order to horde their research for their chosen few and not the vast "unwashed" of aspiring living historians. How many times have we seen legitimate questions posted on forums only to be responded to with citations without explanation or lessons from experience?
Well, in Company D, when we stumble on something, we want to get it out there and tell you how you can do things yourself. Much like sharing where to find and how to have made quality, affordable Civil War stencils, we also know that one of the most important details in reenacting are labels. Previously, since I found a wonderful store on Etsy to make stencils, I thought I'd see who could make stamps. After a lot of research and following my gut, I came across the store, "The Stamp Press."
The customer service is incredible and quick. If you can find a historical mark, label, or image you need created, they can make it into a stamp. My first stamp I had them make was the Sharps ammunition label which cost about $75. Now, in Company D, we can recreate every known variety of Sharps Arsenal Pack from the white paper wrapped, brown paper wrapped with pasted label, and now brown paper with stamped label. We can now use that stamp to make paper labels in more period correct way.
My most recent stamps included a shelter half contractor label that I found in Frederick Gaede's book which now allows me to recreate even higher quality shelter halves. The other stamp is for .44 Remington rounds. Captain Whitehall did the heavy lifting on the research to help me bring this product back to life.
The Stamp Press also did a wonderful job educating me about what they need and how to choose the best size stamp for the best price. Another important feature that sets them apart is the wide variety of images they can accept. During my research, some stamp makers had very strict parameters on the quality of images they would accept to make into a stamp. As you know, images from history books as well as scans of originals can be of relatively low quality or at least grainy. The Stamp Press was able to work with my images without a problem each time. If you are looking to bring a label or maker's mark back to life, I highly recommend looking in to see what the Stamp Press can do for you.