Backpack (Tornister)

The basic design of the tornister had hardly changed since 1885. The outer flap is covered with horse-hair. The infantryman is wearing the M34 model which has integral straps as opposed to the M39 model which hooked onto the soldier’s support ‘Y’ straps. 

The tornister was used to carry all types of equipment including shoes, washing kit and food etc. On the outside is strapped the soldier’s blanket, greatcoat and zeltbahn. Tornisters varied but attached to the rear of this one is the aluminium mess tin that was usually worn on the breadbag (or later the A-Frame). The tornister was rarely seen after the early war years as rucksacks were introduced.


      M34 Tornister with built in support straps                             M34 Tornister with flap opened