The U.S. Sanitary Commission Bulletin in 1864 had a pattern for a soldier's ration bag. Those bags were to be made from painted cloth with a cotton top and drawstring closure. The pattern also called for the bags to be 8 inches tall. We have reproduced these bags and have found they are great for holding rations or any other small items that you might need to put in your knapsack/haversack. The bags are made from painted cloth on the outside only, the inside is the unpainted side of the cloth.