M1941 Mermite Can
The M1941 Mermite cans are insulated canisters with a rubber gasket at the top which contain 3 inserts with lids, as seen in the pictures. They were used for storing and transporting food or blood. The container is insulated, and was used to keep food hot or cold while it was being delivered to other soldiers. The 3 inserts would fit in a mermite can and the lid could be latched closed to keep the contents hot or cold. The cans had carrying handles on both ends and could be transported by truck, jeep, or troops. Some M1941 Mermite Cans were used for transporting blood to Army medical personnel. Such cans were designated for blood transport only. The bottles of blood would be packed in ice inside the cans so they could be used later for blood transfusions. It is not certain where the term "Mermite" came from. Some people think that it comes from the French word "marmite" which means "cooking pot".
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