Union Army Uniforms and Insignia of the Civil War

Infantry Officers' Hat and Cap Insignia

Cap Ornaments
Forage Cap Insignia for Infantry Officers
Hat Ornaments
Jeff Davis Hat Insignia for Infantry Officers of First Regiment
Source: Schuyler, Hartley and Graham Catalog

The larger size insignia were intended for the front of the Jeff Davis hat and the smaller size ones are for the front of the forage cap (kepi). The numeral "one" within the above infantry horn indicates a regiment, having the number one. It is not possible to know from an actual insignia or photograph whether or not the regimental number is that of a regiment from particular state or from the Regular Army of the United States. Some insignia have numbers in bullion embroidery or as small silver metallic numbers added to the insignia. In other cases (as shown) the insignia were worn without any regimental number. The insignia themselves were generally made from bullion embroidery, but also were sometimes stamped brass with a false embroidery surface.

The infantry horn had its origin in Europe where it was worn by light infantry skirmishers recruited among huntsman. The English had a Rifles, the French Chasseurs and Germans Jäger troops. Americans followed European uniform styles and the hunting horn device was used on various shako plates in the early 19th Century. In 1839 an insignia very similar to the Civil War one was adopted for wear on the front of the officer's forage cap. With the evolution of headgear it was transferred to each new style until in 1875 when it was replaced with the crossed musket insignia that remains in use by infantry as a branch insignia today.

Infantry Officer
Infantry Officer
Wearing Chasseur Pattern Kepi
with Small Horn

MORE: Original Period Infantry Officer's Insignia

Original Infantry Officer's Horn
Original Infantry Officer's Horn in Oval
Original Infantry Officer's Horn in Oval

MORE: Photographs of Officers Wearing the Insignia

Photograph of Officer with Infantry Insignia on Kepi
Captain Gibson with Jeff Davis Hat
Infantry Officer with Hat Insignia

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