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Soldier Cavalry Unit? Aldershot Please Help ID 1870s?


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Good evening Gentlemen,

I got this photo today. It was taken by J. Jacklett of Aldershot in the second half of the 1870s (I presume, as the studio opened 1875 and the design on the reverse looks 1870s-ish).

I have absolutely no knowledge of British uniforms (at all) but it does bear resemblances to German cavalry uniforms, so maybe this soldier belonged to a British one. But which? And is this a lanyard for marksmanship?

Could you please help identify the unit?

Thank you!

GreyC

KavalleristAldershot_kl.jpg

Kav.jpg

Edited by GreyC
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I'll answer the easy question first, GreyC. The 'lanyard' is actually what are known as 'lines'. The end which was not pinned to the breast was attached to the headgear and their purpose was to ensure that the busby or czapka wasn't lost if it fell off in a charge or other engagement.

In answering that, I may have answered your question as to whether it is cavalry or not (the Royal Horse Artillery, because they also wore busbies, also had lines but I don't see their flaming bomb badge on the collar). At least, I think that it was only certain cavalry regiments who wore lines but others will qualify this, I'm sure.

My problem is that I don't recognise the tunic as being in any way related to Hussar or Lancer regiments the undress tunic for each at this time being a stable jacket, as far as I am aware. It almost looks like a Dragoon tunic but I would have expected an extra small loop at the cuff end of the Austrian knot.

Hopefully, others will cast more light on this.

 

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Hello Trooper,

thank you for coming forward and supplying your knowlwdge to me as an uninitiated. I heard someone call it (offline) a strange mix of dragoon and husar.

GreyC

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1 hour ago, GreyC said:

I heard someone call it (offline) a strange mix of dragoon and husar.

I would rather agree with this notion! There is a possibility that it is a yeomanry regiment uniform but, against that idea, this uniform looks well used whereas the yeomanry soldiers, being part-time, would only have worn their uniforms once or twice a month (if that) as opposed to on a daily basis.

For your interest, here are some nice illustrations of Dragoon Guard and Dragoon Other Rank uniforms of the Victorian era,

http://www.uniformology.com/UIDSPEC-07.html

and the corresponding uniforms for Hussar regiments 

http://www.uniformology.com/HUSSARS-07.html

Both links are to uniforms of regular army cavalry regiments, not part-timers, of course.

Edited by Trooper_D
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Hi Trooper_D,

thank you for providing these excellent links. However they seem to show uniforms post 1881. I do have a feeling based on the design of the CDV, that this is a pre-1881 uniform. Nonetheless very informative and illustrative and many features seem to have been the same after 1881.

GreyC

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1 hour ago, GreyC said:

However they seem to show uniforms post 1881.

I am sure that you are right about the date of the CDV. There was a big redesign of full dress uniforms in the 1850s (for example, hussar regiments changed from a dolman with multiple rows of lace to the more-familiar longer German style tunic with six rows of lace - as shown in my avatar); thereafter there were no major changes other than things like the height of collars etc. So these illustrations give a good indication of cavalry uniforms for the second half of the century.

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Hi Trooper_D,

good to know. Thank you for the additional info.  I am glad you responded to my question, though I had honestly hoped for a bit larger echo. The other friends of historic cavalry uniforms  in this forum seem to be busy with stable duties :rolleyes:.

GreyC

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  • 1 year later...

Hello GreyC,

I just joined the forum and my collecting interest is Yeomanry so thought I would add to your thread.

I agree "Pill box" hat. The shoes have heals which would not be good for riding as you would not be able to release from stirrups?

So maybe his shoes are "walking out" wear and not for riding? The belt would also be uncomfortable if worn while riding in a saddle with knees up… however early Yeomanry did have belts - but removed them pretty soon! The know as Trooper_D already noted is similar to several used in late Victorian times... so could be Yeomanry.

Around 1860 to 1885 it was fairly difficult to tell the difference between some Dragoon uniforms as they were fashioned on Regular Army Dragoons uniforms with subtle differences of regimental buttons and the silver braid around the Pill Box hat was a different thread. This was because they were locally produced. If you could see the "knot" on top of the pill box hat then it would help reduce to units. Again the "knot" on hat was unique to unit … or at least reduced to a very small number. 

 

The biggest clue would be Photographer Studio Address as if Yeomanry then nearly always they used a local photographer as they were TERRITORIAL. So Aldershot would suggest Regular cavalry or Hampshire Carabiniers yeomanry. So if Yeomanry they would be surrounding counties.

Good Hunting

Wayne

 

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...
3 hours ago, coldstream said:

GreyC,

Would a Member of a Cavalry or Yeomanry Unit be issued with a cane, surely it would have been the whip or crop as seen in many images of the period.

Simon.

It was the fashion for young men to carry small [completely impractical] canes during the 1880s-1890s and soldiers were quick to follow this fashion, not least because they echoed the 'stick' carried by RSMs and such like.  A cane would be perfectly appropriate for a CDV taken of a trooper in walking out dress.

Peter

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Gentlemen,

thank you for your (continued) interest in this topic. As I have no knowledge about the topic, I can only say thank you for putting your ideas forward without contributing anything relating to the subject itself.

GreyC

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