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Mervyn,

these are early examples of the forage cap and are indeed similar to the peaked cap we know today. The forage cap went through several design changes, including the pillbox cap, and finally emerged as the peaked cap.

I agreed with you Mervyn as you can see from the quote above. However, I am convinced that the original version of the peaked cap that we know today was of Russian origin and maybe Prussian. The paintings that I posted prove this and are backed up by the Wikipedia quote - pity it does not quote any sources.

Everyone's a winner :D

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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I received today a book on the Kent Yeomanry and it has a photo of a group of officers of the East Kent Mounted Rifles at Shorncliffe, 1901 all wearing the peaked cap. Notable also is the inclusion in the photo of a Regular Army Officer wearing the khaki version with his service dress.

There is also a photo of ORs c1905 wearing the pillbox cap with "walking out" dress.

I guess that this ends the thread with the peaked forage cap replacing the round cap over a period c1900 - 1907.

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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I received today a book on the Kent Yeomanry and it has a photo of a group of officers of the East Kent Mounted Rifles at Shorncliffe, 1901 all wearing the peaked cap. Notable also is the inclusion in the photo of a Regular Army Officer wearing the khaki version with his service dress.

There is also a photo of ORs c1905 wearing the pillbox cap with "walking out" dress.

I guess that this ends the thread with the peaked forage cap replacing the round cap over a period c1900 - 1907.

Stuart

Hello Stuart!

In the book you refer to (The Kent Yeomanry, by Boris Mollo, right?), on the page opposite the ORs of 1905, there's the following caption to a 1913 photo: "The pillbox forage cap has finally been replaced by a dark blue peaked cap with the regimental badge." Doesn't that imply that the pillbox cap could have been replaced even later than 1907? And forgive a novice (and do please educate me!), but on page 48 a group of ORs in 1913, also of the West Kent Yeomanry, wears torrin caps. Another cap replacing the pillbox cap and in its turn being replaced by the peaked cap?

/Jonas

Edited by GRA

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Jonas,

yes it is indeed Boris Mollo's book and I can't comment on the Torin cap but perhaps it was a matter of what form of dress was being worn, e.g. service dress, undress, which determined the headwear.

I started out wondering when the round forage cap was replaced by the staff pattern for the Regular Army and perhaps should not have brought in the Yeomanry. However, I just did some checking that I should have done much earlier and that was to check the 1904 Dress Regulations. The round forage cap has disappeared, as has the pillbox, and only the Staff Pattern forage cap and Glengarry are mentioned. So this means that by 1904 the round forage cap, the pillbox cap and the field cap had officially disappeared, at least for officers.

According to Brian Davis in British Army Uniforms & Insignia of World War Two the field service cap was re-introduced with the advent of battle-dress in 1937. I am afraid that I am ignorant on the subject of the Torin cap but without going off on a tangent what was the difference between the Torin and the Field Service cap?

As to being a novice most of us, who haven't served, are as nothing is easy with the British Army :cheers:

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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Thank you Stuart!

It seems like in the British Army, regimental traditions and whims (and, dare I say, in a few cases also pigheadedness) by far outweighs Dress Regulations if need be, however that's how lasting traditions are made! Perhaps, as you imply, the Yeomanry (as all equivalent units) ought to have been kept out, as a combination of eccentric COs and "second rank position" in the Army could complicate the equation as to introduction / phasing out of certain parts of uniforms. A very interesting thread.

/Jonas

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The US Army used "wheel caps" as early as the 1820's, and they were standard issue in the Mexican War. Also, here's a uniform grouping for sale from the 1840's that includes a early peaked cap. Crimean period, I guess:

http://themilitarygentleman.com/ProdDetails.asp?Id=90&f=ProdList.asp|prev=true

~TS

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TS,

That gels with the 1811 Russian date but I note that the description of the 45th uniform states "For display purposes I have photographed the set with an officers undress forage cap " and it is a pity that it doesn't give details of the cap itself.

It is so obviously true that armies copied other (successful) armies in the matter of uniforms.

I just had a quick look through the NAM's book A Desperate Undertaking and there is a lovely photo of General Pennefather wearing a forage cap very much the forerunner of the Staff Pattern of later years.

Perhaps we had better move on to footwear as I never expected this thread to have legs :P

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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That lovely uniform - and - the medal ! Makes you want to start into the savings account...........

Stuart - this has been a really interesting thread and I think we have learnt a lot (well, I probably will have - if I can remember). You are quite right with your point about succesful armies and navies being copied. Is that why no-one else wears our Aussie Slouch Hat ?

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The Aussie slouch-hats are well-liked though. We've I've seen visiting Australians give them as gifts, US military personnel go wild for them.

I just don't get why the US doesn't bring them back! We wore them in the pre-WWI years and they were quite popular.

TTFN,

~TS

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The slouch hat apparently originated in the English Civil War and was defined as being a soft hat (felt?) with one side pinned up.

It was issued to trroops during the 2nd Boer War partly because of the shortage of cork for helmets and partly because the troops preferred it. Cork was expensive and supplemented by wicker helmets.

The "bush hat" as the British called it was worn during the India/Burma campagain and also in South East Asia. The Ghurkas were first issued with it in 1901 but no longer wear it on active service.

We must not forget the New Zealanders who called it the "Lemon Squeezer" because the crown was "pinched" in four places. I think this was called the "Montana Peak" in the US forces and is still worn by drill instructors.

And the hat was also used in this latter form by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

It got around.

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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The peaked or 'German' cap as it was known in the Royal Irish Constabulary was introduced in October 1900 as replacement for the round pill-box cap. Of course I'm only talking about the RIC here but they generally followed the British Army standards as 'fast followers'.

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Hello Peter,

if it hasn't been said before then welcome to GMIC.

The fact that the RIC adopted the peaked/German/Staff cap in 1900 indicates that it was assuredly in use, unofficially, some years before that date.

The beauty of this forum is that these snippets of information come together to help us all form a more rounded picture of a given subject. I have said it before but better to have a group of knowledgeable people than one expert.

Cheers,

Stuart

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Simon,

I had pondered the Navy side but did not pursue it. Therefore quite likely that the Army followed the Navy on this one, but that begs the question as to when the Navy adopted the style. They were still wearing the old style well into the First World War.

Stuart

Canadian Militia orders refer to the new cap as the "naval pattern".

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Michael,

any idea when the cap was introduced into the Militia? I have a military/naval outfitter's pattern book of 1886 and it illustrates a captain's and a lieutenant's cap of the Royal Navy which is a slightly "abbreviated" and softer version of the Staff pattern which began this thread.

Stuart

Edited by Stuart Bates

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No reply to my question about the Field service Cap vs. the Torin, so I ask was it, more or less, the fact the the FSC folded down to provide protection to the head?

Stuart

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Stuart

Just noticed your question re the torrin cap and the FS cap. The torrin cap has no buttons and has two side flaps which are stitched around the base of the cap and were just pulled down over the ears. The FS cap has the two button front which when unbuttoned would unfold and drop down around the wearers head. Both these caps in my opinion are impractical but that never stopped the Army from issuing such items!

The torrin caps were brightly coloured particularly amongst Calvary Regiments and Foot Guards Officers were dark blue or black as I recall.

I'll find some images to illustrate the difference as soon as I can.

Simon

Edited by coldstream

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An image of an Officer of a Yeomanry Regiment wearing a dark red coloured Torrin cap with contrasting piping. As can be seen there are no buttons and the cap sides could be pulled down although I doubt if they would offer much protection.

Somewhere I have a photograph of Coldstream Guards Officers in the Crimea wearing there Torrin caps across there heads with one of the side flaps pulled down to form a sort of peak but I can't find it at the moment. :banger:

Simon

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Hello Stuart,

I may be repeating what others have stated but what the Hell!

Canadian dress regs (for officers) in 1898 first mention the use of the "naval or staff' pattern (note that both terms were used). Units could apply for permission to adopt these but the trabsition (amongst officers) had to be uniform throughout the regiment. As we all know 'military uniform' is an oxymoron. In 1904 Clothing Instructions the use of the new pattern forage cap was approved for issue to ORs. There are numerous entries in Cdn General Orders authorizing units to adopt the Naval or Staff pattern and the details of welt and headband colours are often given.

The Torin pre-dated the Field Service Cap and was not limited to officers. These date from approx 1880 (possibly a little later). The side flaps could be pulled down to keep the ears warm. The FSC was an improvement on this as it allowed the sides and front to form a Balaclave of sorts. Nonetheless, God help the soldier caught wearing the cap this way - in much the same way that the chin-strap on a forage cap is never worn under the chin.

I will try to post some photos over the next few days.

Clive

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Simon & Clive,

thanks for the info as I couldn't find any definition of the Torin cap. The 1900 DRs do however have a photo of the FSC with the flaps down so I was aware of that.

Now I wonder where the name Torin came from :beer:

Stuart

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The Torin was an unofficial name and I have not been able to determine its origin. The following may clarify the terminology;

The "pillbox" is correctly "round forage cap". The officers' cap that is essentially shaped like a pillbox but has a peak is a "forage cap", intended for wear with Undress Order. The "Forage Cap for Field Service" replaced the glengarry in 1874 for other ranks. This was the "Torin" shape. Years of looking have failed to disclose where the term "Torin" came from. The "Torin" cap first appears in the available regulations for officers in 1883, but may have been adopted earlier. The correct term is the "Forage Cap for Active Service and Peace Manoeuvres". In my opinion it is correct to term it a "Field Service cap" for all ranks.Our familiar FSC is correctly the "Universal Pattern Field Service Cap". One can speak of "Field Service Cap, Universal Pattern" and "Field Service Cap, Glengarry Pattern".The peaked caps are named for the order of dress. The first to appear was the "Staff Pattern Forage Cap", which is coloured and which was originally intended for Undress Order. The khaki version of this is the "Service Dress Cap", whether or not there are staff or corps distinctions by means of a coloured band. These were intended to be worn only with Service Order, except for Guards officers, who were permitted to wear the coloured forage cap with Service Order. If you look at the regulations / orders of dress after 1914, the distinctions are clear.

Here are some examples;

Forage Cap for Active Service and Peace Manoeuvres (Torin)

Front to back - Royal Engineers, Army Service Corps, General Staff

three%20torin%20caps.jpg

61st Battalion (badge taken from centre-piece of the helmet plate, 62nd Fusiliers, Artillery (alll Canadian)

tritorin.jpg

A transitional Torin which features details from both the Field Service Cap and the Glengarry.

cfscqorold.jpg

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Here are some early Field Service Caps - all Canadian

Patern worn during the Boer War

dsc06494%20denner.jpg

Medical Service

left%20oblique%20vi_.jpg

Duke of Connaughts Royal Canadian Hussars

view%20i.jpg

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This is why I like GMIC. We start out on a specific and end up going off on tangents. All of which add to individuals' general sum of knowledge.

Stuart

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The Field Service Cap, introduced with Battledress in 1937 - shown here in serge, twill and cotton

dsc02225a%20jc.jpg

The Coloured Field Service Cap; front to rear - 17th Duke of York's Royal Canadian Hussars, Canadian Army Dental Corps, Canadian Provost Corps, all for ORs

three%20cfsc.jpg

Edited by servicepub

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This is why I like GMIC. We start out on a specific and end up going off on tangents. All of which add to individuals' general sum of knowledge.

Stuart

Ooops! Sorry to hijack the thread - perhaps I should have started a new one?

Edited by servicepub

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