Wearing Army Traditions - (cont.)

U.S. Collar Insignia

In 1892 officers changed to an undress blue coat trimmed in black mohair braid. By 1902 the collar featured a national cipher on each side. This was added to distinguish regular from volunteer or militia units, now wearing a similar uniform.

Branch of Service Insignia

The 1834 regulation uniform cap of black felt introduced branch insignia in either yellow (artillery) or white (infantry) metal on the front. By 1895 branch insignia had moved to the collar of the officer's blouse, with those on the enlisted uniform following in 1902.

Shoulder Sleeve Insignia

American vehicle and baggage markings in France, reflecting regional symbolism such as the South Carolina wildcat, became shoulder patches in 1918. After 1945 they could recognize former wartime service when worn on the right shoulder.

Officers Sleeve Ornamentation

To provide recognition after 1907, officers had mohair braid of like shade on the cuffs of their cotton khaki and olive drab wool service uniforms. With the Army green uniform in 1954, this distinction continued with black braid.

Overseas Service Bar

Created in 1918, the gold War Service Chevron indicated each six months overseas. In 1944 the Overseas Service Bar revived this practice for World War II. In 1951 the bars were moved to the right cuff.

Garrison Cap

In 1918 American “Doughboys” serving in France needed headgear that was comfortable to wear, yet could be stored in the pocket when the helmet was donned. To replace the service hat, the Army copied the French Bonnet de Police, an envelope-style fatigue headgear, and created the overseas cap, the predecessor to the garrison cap.

Officers Cap Braid

The 1858 uniform hat had branch-colored cords for enlisted personnel, black and metallic gold for commissioned officers, and gold for general officers. In 1940 the garrison cap converted the hat-cord scheme to cord-edge braid to trim the curtain of the caps.

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