We are currently in the process of standardizing our accouterments per army regulation. This includes labeling our gear. Why label our gear? In addition to being army regulation it also has the practical application of making sure soldiers could locate their gear and that soldiers could be identified if killed or if they became a casualty of war.
1863 Articles of War says: "Haversacks will be marked upon the flap with the number and name of the regiments, the letter of the company, and number of the soldier.."
The Knapsack: Many of us have the calf skin Knapsack. For those with the double knapsack, regulations state: "For those of the infantry will be marked in the same way (in the center of the cover with the number of the regiment only in figures one and half inch in length of the character called full face), in white paint. Knapsacks will also be marked upon the inner side of with the letter of the company and the number of the soldier, on such part as may be readily observed at inspections."
The Canteen: In Company D, we encourage the use of a jean wool cover with a twine rather than a chain holding the cork. Only the New York Quartermaster Depot made canteens with chains attached to the stopper. The blue wool canteens for sale at sutlers did exist but few were made during the course of the war and only made from one manufacturer. The reason being it was considered wasteful to use material to cover a canteen that could be better used making uniforms. Canteen covers will be marked with the number of the regiment, letter of the company, and number of the soldier on one side and initials of the soldier on the reverse.