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Infantry Private's Coat and Cap

Infantry Private's Coat and Cap

Date: about 1840
Catalog #: 22729    Accession #: 64127
Credit: Division of Military History and Diplomacy, National Museum of American History

Dimensions / Weight

Dimensions: 23.5" H x 16" W

Physical Description

Dark blue cloth lined with white serge and edged with white kerseymere. Brown leather forage cap with slightly darker leather bill.

General History

The soft leather forage cap was introduced in 1833. There seems to be no historical reason for the distinct change in the style of the cap. Since soldiers wore their uniforms day and night, it has been reported that the forage cap came in handy at night. With the strap buckled under the chin tightly it was a big help, according to one hospital steward, "to keep out of our ears, ear-wigs, centipedes, cockroaches, etc."


Country: United States
Era: Expansion and Reform (1801-1861)
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