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Eddie

Leather Cockades

Hello People  - can you give some thought to this .
It is my understanding that Other Ranks had a leather cockade on the Regimental cap ( alias "shako") - but has anyone seen or better still - got a detailed image of an original?

As far as I am aware black cockades were adopted 1715 ish to differentiate Government troops from white cockaded Jacobites and that  a black cockade was worn on the bicorn,then onward through the early leather stove pipe, 1806 felt stovepipe, the "Belgic", the 1816 shako and  the next pattern up to 1828.
Officers silk examples appear on extant Belgics - but what about the rankers? Some have got to have survived in a museum somewhere!

I ask this as this current standard reenactors leather cockade looks to me a sorry mean thing - a flat disc with serrated edge and pseudo pleats represented by groves cut in the surface radiating from the centre.

That is what is available for us today but is it based on anything original??

2nd question : There seems to be no room above the large stovepipe brass plate to fit a cockade    (as per 83rd Foot examples  Musee  de l'Armee Paris and the NAM)  -  many  period drawings show the cockade  perched high up - over the top edge of the cap seemingly at the base of the plume itself.  

Any ideas?
Ben Townsend

FWIW,
1. More likely the Jacobites adopted white (Bourbon?) to differentiate themselves from the Hannoverian troops. The black cockade being the Hannoverian 'national' colour.
I haven't seen an original I'm afraid, only drawings of them. The reproductions appear to conform to the drawings...

2. As long as there is space for a stitch, I don't think it mattered if the cockade overlapped the plate at the bottom edge, or the plume fixings at the top. I would venture that one of the objectives of the cockades' siting was to obscure the plume/tuft slot. *speculation*
Eddie

Thanks Ben
I am suspicious of the repro leather cockades I have seen - they hardly merit being called a "cockade" being just flat discs  of scored leather - they give me the impression of being something just produced to look visually more or less right.
I realise they are not going to be elaborate jobs like the officers but I would have thought they would have been simple pleated leather or a rosette of overlaid leather pieces.
I would be happy to accept the repros if I could see a few similar matching extant examples, photos or detailed line drawings.
I wonder if that marvellous German Celle collection has cockades still fitted to original caps?
I will email Nat Army Museum to see if they have any indexed in their collection.
I have been looking through my copies of "Regiment" magazine - a lot of caps/shakos in museums are shown but no cockades apparent.
For an item many of us wear on our hats it would be good to know how close they really are to what was worn.
John Waller

I think the ones that John Anastasio sells are pressed in a metal die which he had machined. Not sure of his provenance for the design but Craig Armstrong uses them on the caps he makes and he has done more research than most on the subject. Spud (Born2late) makes and sells carved leather cockades. Very skillfully done but again I'm not aware of the provenance for this type. It seems a bit labour intensive to me.

I use leather with tooled lines. Would love to see an original leather cockade though.

Franklin shows cockades with a very simple 'petal' design in his book which is what I've been using on my other ranks belgics.
Paul Durrant

Methinks I've found my next 'experimental archeology' project!
John Waller

Here's one. I tried to upload but failed miserably!

http://www.thrale.com/sites/defau...iours_volunteer_uniform_shako.jpg

Cockade looks like the pattern John A makes.
Radford

Greetings!

This is where I got my Shako:

http://www.jgkeller.ca/Reenactment.html#Prices

If you scroll down the page you will see his very nice pressed leather cockades. Of course, he didn't have them when I got mine, so I made my own cockade:



As to an original, I forget where I got this image from, but it looks like an Other Ranks cap, and the cockade is surprisingly crude:

Eddie

John Waller wrote:
Here's one. I tried to upload but failed miserably!

http://www.thrale.com/sites/defau...iours_volunteer_uniform_shako.jpg

Cockade looks like the pattern John A makes.


Interesting John - my initial  reaction was that with that massive anchor it  looked outlandish and theatrical but looking at the associated Thrale com page :http://www.thrale.com/st_saviours_volunteers
the write up about the Anchor volunteers seems to be credible.

The 43rd cap shown by Radford - it would be good if someone can date it and comment about its authenticity.

Just the sort of stuff I was hoping to see -Anyone else got any images of believed  genuine "original" leather cockades ??
Ben Townsend

The 43rd OR cap as presented here doesn't accord with regulation. The numbers below the buglehorn were not specified until 1814, by which time the stovepipe cap was not regulation equipment, having been discarded in 1812. Regulation is not a uniquely perfect guide, but its not a bad place to start.
Others here are better qualified to comment on the construction, but I would expect to see the brass bugle horn that has been repeatedly dug in England, France, Spain and North America-the same one we sport, modelled on James Kochan's original example. The button in the cockade is not consistent with what we know of the 43rd's buttons from this period, according to Parkyn, an OR button should have a laurel wreath surround.

@John- Love the Thrale Volunteers link, very interesting.
Ben Townsend

http://www.nationaltrustcollections.org.uk/search/1

See also items National Trust Inventory Number 1350801, 1350803
From the 1820s.
Eddie

ben wrote:
http://www.nationaltrustcollections.org.uk/search/1

See also items National Trust Inventory Number 1350801, 1350803
From the 1820s.

Cheers Ben - pity we can't show the images ,
Had a look at them - both Regency-ish  - the first is difficult to make out what it is made of as it is drooping forward, but the backing is leather.

Second image is a definite clear leather cockade - stamped or tooled (?) and possibly more than one layer. (The unusual badge is of interest being a trophy of musical instruments- including a jingling johnny - I have seen similar design on another earlier  Gloucester related "shako" plate - but thats another story)

The National Army museum index reveals  no cockades as such  for the period and no obvious other ranks caps/shakos for the period 1806 - 1828. As expected most surviving stuff is Officers.

I have emailed a couple of Regimental museums - awating replies.

At least we can see that such flat leather cockades existed. Good.
I admit I had suspected it was a case of reenactors copying reenactors - derived from early repros in the 1970s!

Be nice to see a few more examples.
Ben Townsend

Perhaps 1350800.1 from the same collection? Problem is, I went to Snowshill fairly recently and didn't see this. Was informed their reserve collection had moved to Berrington NT.

For a crude leather Officer's cockade, try,
http://www.glosters.org.uk/collec...y=7&campaign=10&keywords=
Neibelungen

Most  of the  evidence  for leather  cocade styles  is conjectural,  being derived  indirectly from  surviving  officer's  patterns,  french examples or from  bicorns and later hats.

Unlike french  hats,  british O/R cocades seem to have been loosely attatched  or  involved  in some way with the retention of the plume.   Very few seem to have evidence  of  sewing holes  or  sliders that you find  on french styles.

Given  that the style evolved  out  of  cloth cocades on tricorns,  it's almost  probable that they take one  of two  forms.  Radial stars fans  or circular roses mimicing  pleated roses seen on gorget ribbons and  officer's  hats.   (Very few officer's surviving examples  not on cocades have the  radial  fan  shape  on them if not a bicorn.)


I'll  hunt through my image collection later and see  if I can  find some examples, but given the loss rate on them I doubt if I'll  find many that  are  properly genuine survivors to  the original  hat.
Neibelungen

I had a hunt through my  collection of  original images and can't honestly find any that would be genuine  ones  of the  period.  

Most examples seem to be based  or taken  from examples you'd see  from the 1820's  or 30's regency/ bell  tops.  Definate rays  in multiple rings.  The style mirrors the concentric catridge  pleating you see on early officer's shakos and gorget roses.

The 43'rd  cap is a pagent  piece with additions..  Buttons match nothing recorded and the bugle  is a victorian  glengarry.

There's an  early  militia leather stovepipe with a leather remnant which  is  pretty crude. It's not that thick  though, far less than  many  of the  reenactor ones, which suggests  it's stamped as the  detailing passes through to  the rear.

The  rayed style I  suspect  is conjectural  based  off american  examples and  bicorn,  particularly  RN hats with Nelson's  copenhagen  hat being  the classic example.

My  opinion would be they  were  of a variety  of patterns and  made  locally  off a brass  plate mould and  varied between every different hat maker depending  on what the examples to hand at the time.  

A  lot  of what we would consider crude  were  probably equally  likely to have been made up on the spot to  replace lost  or damaged  cocades.  Doesn't take much at all  to  tool  one into some scrap  leather, but I do  doubt that  the pointed rays were commonly used  on O/R's hats..  It's a lot  of cutting and trimming  required for each  one without a made tool for it.   Even the 20's and 30's O/R cocades are not  pointed.   They match the die tooling you'd find  on a  german  picklehaup  stamping though. !!
 
Can't find a clear picture but  perhaps somebody might look at the  regency  shako  held by the 19th  museum.  Definately has a cocade  of the 1820's  on a fairly complete O/R's shako.
Ben Townsend

I think Kieran has been to the Green Howards museum recently. Kiki?
Eddie

I emailed the Green Howards museum yesterday enquiring after "shakos" 1806 - 1828 - in particular a Regency and the reply was that they haven't got one.

That Neilbelungen should be of the opinion that the OR s  leather cockades we sport are largely conjectural  echoes my own thoughts that the rayed design merely mimics - but in leather - the pleated Officers cockades.
Ben attached a Gloster link showing an actual Officers' pleated leather example on a bicorn.
Niebelungen also mentioned the lack of sewing holes on cockades and the manner in which plumes were attached. On some contemporary prints the cockade is worn so impossibly high they seem over the top edge of the hat - attached to the base of the plume itself??

I will email a few more museums.
Ben Townsend

Question: If the cockades aren't sewn on, how are they attached? Wired through holes? Back loop to go round plume holder?
Eddie

ben wrote:
Question: If the cockades aren't sewn on, how are they attached? Wired through holes? Back loop to go round plume holder?


Just speculating on that -

I have seen photos of examples of Officers caps - without plume - and they still had silk cockades attached  -so  presumably sewn on.

Other Ranks - leather  ? I wonder if they were merely attached by the button pushed through the centre hole of the cockade and just the button sewn to the hat so that the threads went either side of the plume shaft.
(This would make it easy for Belgic cap cords to be looped over the cockade - though on many extant Officers caps the cord seems attached to a hook near or behind the cockade.)
Neibelungen

Usually the button  on them is the means  of holding them in place.  ie.. the button  is stitched  or  loop & laced to  the hat and the cocade sits  around the shank.   Not a problem with circular cocades.

Mainly why once the button goes the cocade vanishes too.  (O/R)
That said...  once the cocade goes the button goes if  it's stitched to  the cocade.

Larger  rayed with top  spray (eg bicorns) need stitching so  they don't rotate.

I find the idea  of the  cocade button shank  holding the  plume  in place a bit conjectural, as I've never seen any examples  to confirm it.

It's complex trying to  work out how to  fit the button cocade and  plume leather into  the same space and have access to  stitch the parts down.  However the cocade does serve a usefull purpose  of hiding the coarse stitching  of the  plume socket leather from showing  on the outside.  

My main argument against a longer shank on the cocade button  holding the plume is that cocades  survive  on some hats even  without a plume, plus putting a foul  weather cover  over and reassembling everything  is not easy.  

It's not to  say that they may not be stitched down via the cocade.  Just the example hats I've seen show no  traces  of substantial  stitches or holes to  the side  of the plume holder  or any sign  of a hole through the hat for the  button.  


I don't think  there  is a right  or wrong way,  just  oppinions.  Given  the lack of surviving leather cocades  it's conjecture, habbit and  practicality.
Neibelungen

I'm never quire sure  of  the hook position as  it varies so much.   Quite a few officer's surviving examples have either a ring or a hook, often positioned behing the  front plate back too (left side -cocade-  looking at it ).  

Rings are interesting as the are pretty permanent and have to be made up with the  cords themselves,  and  once stitched down make the cords  permanent.  Something  possible  if you have a poarade cap  and a field cap

Definately hooks at the lower centre front though,  and  evidence  of rings or hooks  (and even a chain) if there's a rear fall.

Not enough  O/R's surviving to  say,  but if your sewing a hook  left and front,  then a hook  right  isn't much  different,  though I'm  inclined to  feel looping  over the cocade is more sensible since  it's the ideal point and already there  on assembly.    

Horses to cources and  choice I guess.
Radford

Neibelungen wrote:

The 43'rd  cap is a pagent  piece with additions..  Buttons match nothing recorded and the bugle  is a victorian  glengarry.



FWIW, I am posting the rest of the photos of the 43rd cap. Pageant piece or not, it has some interesting workmanship details, and it looks quite authentically old, if not 1809 old.






Also, here are a couple of officer's cockades:



Notice how one has the cord mounted to a ring, and the other has it tucked behind the front shield. Neither is looped around the cockade.
Neibelungen

Interesting set  of photos.  

I'll add some notes and observations.    The brass  plume holder  is a simplified version of the style you see  in  bell tops and later shakos.  Usually you'll find a winged thread clamping the plume stem down.
Lining  isn't anything I've seen  done  of a period hat and never with a rough  or suede side  out inless  it's a chamoise  brow piece similar to  that seen in many chapskas.  Peaks sewn  in correctly but would be interesting to see  if the  liner has been caught under the peak  stitching.. a very contemporary method.
Plumes properly made though,  no pom poms  on a wire there !!

Middle  one's a missmatch...  white  cords added.  Brass fancy button  on some leather thing...  added  for sure.
Agree with the  hook  behind the  plate though..  probably still  retained the hook.

The felt  on both first two looks far too  rough for an officer's though.. no  rubbing  of any  beaver body  or  real age from  handleing  that you see  in the latter.  

The rings  on the last  shako  are added to  the cords afterwards as the  original  shako  at auction had no  cords.   Hence the need to  be split rings to  fit them on.  Notice the thread stitches.  ...  very black and glossy unlike a period piece where the thread ages and dries out.

The rosette definately has a contemporary feel and certainly had the bugle integral  to it originally. However  you see a number  of similar styles  on  highland,  LI and militia  undress  caps  roight through to  the edwardian period.
John Waller

Neibelungen wrote:
Plumes properly made though,  no pom poms  on a wire there !!


Bit off topic but how are plumes properly made? O/R plumes seem to  always be referred to as 'tufts' or feathers as in " Once in every two years, a lackered felt cap, with a cockade, and feather or tuft". My theory is that the woolen tufts may have been more loosely made than many modern reconstructions to try and simulate a feather effect. Any ideas?
Neibelungen

I'll tell you  one thing...  real ones are not  pompoms stuck onto  a wire.  

It's a spiral  wrapping  of weaved wool  strands over the stem.  

Feather plumes are made similarly  or  more correctly bunches  of feathers are wrapped down  with thread in sequence round the  plume stem.

The term  tuft  refers to the  individual strads  of threads made up into  the  spiral  weaving.

It  probably is used to  differentiate  it from  'rovings' used in weaving,  which has a similar start material  and  finished appearance,  but a different construction method, and makes church bell  rope sallies  and  boat fenders.
Eddie

Some worthy contributions there Gents.
Of interest to me - but off the topic as such - is the brass internal plume holder and the spiral construction of the plume on the "43rd" cap.
(Odd coincidence but I was about to contact a Church bell rope manufacturer to ask how they make the wool hand grip -"sallies" as they look like our worsted plumes . Reckon theres a trade secret here but I will try a few experiments!)

The second "Belgic" pictured looks like one currently on a well known internet auction site.

Had a few replies from museums  - 14th Foot - Prince of Wales Yorkshire and 11th/39th Devon and Dorset  - they have no leather cockades.

Perhaps if you have a Regimental museum nearby you could ask if they have any- even if not on display?
John Waller

Neibelungen wrote:
I'll tell you  one thing...  real ones are not  pompoms stuck onto  a wire.  

It's a spiral  wrapping  of weaved wool  strands over the stem.  

Feather plumes are made similarly  or  more correctly bunches  of feathers are wrapped down  with thread in sequence round the  plume stem.

The term  tuft  refers to the  individual strads  of threads made up into  the  spiral  weaving.

It  probably is used to  differentiate  it from  'rovings' used in weaving,  which has a similar start material  and  finished appearance,  but a different construction method, and makes church bell  rope sallies  and  boat fenders.


Thanks for that Andrew. I never supposed that pom poms were the correct way but confess to making a few like that. If I understand you correctly the worsted strands are woven to be at right angles to a sort of base strip? In the way that many other trimmings are such as bullion etc.?

Feather I could work out but wool puzzled me.
Neibelungen

Quote:
If I understand you correctly the worsted strands are woven to be at right angles to a sort of base strip? In the way that many other trimmings are such as bullion etc.?


Pretty much,  though  historically large bullion drops are spun individually and  occasionally mounted  onto  a  base strip.    Indian made  bullion drops are made the same as fringing,  but are lacquered brass  or white metal rather than  drawn gold filled wire.

In a fringe a highly twisted yarn  is  looped back  and forth  and caught  down in a woven  header strip.  Tufts weave  an untwisted yarn onto  a header.  The  opposite way round.  So it actually has more to  do  with wig-making than  weaving.. notably   a lot  of  wigmaker business worked with plumes and  similar hair decoration items.  


Instructions for sallies can be found  in Ashley's Book of Knots..
jgkeller

Leather Rosettes or cockades

I have made 3 dies to press leather cockades.  They are available at www.jgkeller.ca  2, 3 & 4 inch diameter.  Jim
[url=http://postimage.org/image/pxclqdazv/][img]http://s9.postimage.org/pxclqdazv/Rosettes.jpg[/img][/url]
Eddie

Re: Leather Rosettes or cockades

jgkeller wrote:
I have made 3 dies to press leather cockades.  They are available at www.jgkeller.ca  2, 3 & 4 inch diameter.  Jim


Thanks Jim
The idea of this post is really to take a close look at original cockades - in order to compare them to modern repros. It seems that very few period leather cockades have survived.

Are your cockades based on any extant examples?
Paul Durrant

Eddie wrote:
I emailed the Green Howards museum yesterday enquiring after "shakos" 1806 - 1828 - in particular a Regency and the reply was that they haven't got one.


Just remembered I took this at the Green Howards' Museum a few years ago...
Eddie

Thanks Paul
Amazing! If they haven't got one what is that??
It seems to me that many Regimental museums really don't know much about what they have got - let alone mislabelled or unidentified stuff out in the back store rooms!
jgkeller

Leather Cockades

Original Cockades were hand carved in leather.  I used to make them that way with a V-gouge but nobody was willing to pay for the time and effort except maybe a very few museums.  The die was the closest to an original as I could come with the approximate spacing of the ridges and number of points, keeping in mind the number of points had to be something I could easily index on the milling machine.  When hand carving you end up with whatever number you end up with as you work your way around in quarters. From the posting pictures, some liked to throw curves into the design which was impossible on a manual milling machine. Since they were hand carved, you will run into a rather large range as each one is an individual in itself. Sorry if I have misunderstood the purpose of the discussion. I was curious from links landing at my site from this discussion group.... Jim
Paul Durrant

No probs Jim, more curious the better, as far as we're concerned (and they are very nice cockades you do, btw!)

I think what we're trying to work out is whether or not ordinary rank caps actually did sport leather cockades. Seems there is so much doubt of the authenticity of a lot of existing caps, it's hard to know what OR had. Is the leather cockade a post period invention?  

Out of curiosity, what appears on later period caps?
Ben Townsend

I don't think the question is whether the OR cockade was of  leather, that is specified, in for instance, the clothing regulations of 24th Feb 1802, relating to the Infantry Cap,


"The leather part, brass plate and leather cockade (to be provided) once in every two years.."

(through quoted from p.7 Fosten and Gibbs, The British Infantry Shako, for convenience, but see Parkyn's transcription). See also,


"...each Sergeant, Corporal, Drummer (bugler), and Private Man shall have..
A Cap, cockade and tuft as above specified (viz., A Cap made of Felt and Leather with Brass plates Cockade and Tuft conformable to a pattern approved by Us, the felt crown of the cap and Tuft to be supplied annualy, the leather part and Brass plate and the leather cockade every two years.)"


Clothing Warrant 1801 from Book of Entries, Military and Martial Affairs, 1801 i.e.3.59. Record Office. Dublin. Reproduced in History of The Rifle Brigade, Verner, vol1 p.42


And from the Rifle Corps regulations of 1801 (The Green Book) where distinctions for the best shots in the companies are remarked upon,


“Soldiers of the third class, shall wear a small green cockade in front of the cap, immediately above the black leather one.”


 The essential query is what exactly they looked like, which we are hoping to establish from examining provenanced examples for OR British Infantry 1800-16.(with little success) Examples from other nations/ periods/ auxiliary units might shine light if equally well provenanced.

Bennett Cuthbertson's A system for the Compleat Interior Oeconomy of a battalion (1768 ed) suggests that prior to the adoption of the cap, hair cockades were popular,


"Hair cockades are strongest, and of course fittest for soldiers; they should be of a fixed pattern, with the edges as plain as possible, that they may be less likely to retain dust, and thereby be the easier cleaned with oil.."


I wonder if this tendency to simplicity found much favour? And whether it was around 1802 that leather came in, or in 1800 with the introduction of the cap over the cocked hat?

James' Military dictionary (Mine is the 1810 ed. but the earliest, I believe is 1802) has this to say,


"In the army and navy of Great Britain, black silk ribbon for the officers, and hair cockades for the non-commissioned officers, private soldiers, and marines.."

It is surprising that so few survive, as servants often wore them too.  James notes that,


"In England the cockade is worn, in and out of regimentals, by every species of military character. Indeed it is so generally abused, that almost every prostitute, who can afford to keep a man or boy, trims his hat with it."
Pvt._McNamara

Here is a another leather cockade in strange position on an "belgian" cap of KGL origin. Location is Bormann Museum, Celle, Germany.



See this threat http://2nd95thrifles.myfastforum.org/ftopic999-30.php  as well.


Robert
Paul Durrant

ben wrote:
I don't think the question is whether the OR cockade was of  leather, that is specified, in for instance, the clothing regulations of 24th Feb 1802, relating to the Infantry Cap,


"The leather part, brass plate and leather cockade (to be provided) once in every two years.."



Doh!

It would probably help if I read the bloody thread properly!
(is there not an emoticon of someone shooting themselves?)
Neibelungen

Not quite the  period  in question,  but  found  a specific reference  to  1816  O/R shako  and  it specifies  tooled leather cocade.  (HG go 316),

Not clear but  implies  officer's still used  silk cocades as  suppliers book references ditto in braid  purchase for cocade and  lace ring around front  plate.
Eddie

Neibelungen wrote:
Not quite the  period  in question,  but  found  a specific reference  to  1816  O/R shako  and  it specifies  tooled leather cocade.  (HG go 316),

Not clear but  implies  officer's still used  silk cocades as  suppliers book references ditto in braid  purchase for cocade and  lace ring around front  plate.


1816 is pretty close! Where is the reference from please?

What is meant by "lace ring around front plate"?
Neibelungen

It's from a description  of uniform standing  orders  worn  by the 19th  foot.  I believe  it's a transcription from the regimental orderly book, privately published  in the 30's,  but I only have a few pages from the whole book.  It references  the various  orders and the dates  implemented,  with  notations from  official  documents,  museum colection examples, museum documents  and  notes from early JAHS volumes up  to  1934.      

HG go  I assume to be Horse Guards General Order,  when  describing the  1816 shako changes.

Officer's  shako plates  on the 1816 regency shako  had a ring  of lace,  either metal or fabric around the front with a device badge  in the centre,  usually on a star  or a slightly domed crowned disk of some sort.  The lace disapears by about 1822  when  stars become  the norm
Patterns aren't generally standardised and  often reappear as the central  devices on the officer's large bell top plates  post 1824/9
Gregger

Here is a picture of an original other ranks pressed leather cockade on an 1806-12 stove pipe. The top half is gone - I think due to the top being bent on the crown of the cap. It is sewn to the cap with a thick thread starting inside at the centre of the plume holder, over a bit and through the cap and out through the cockade at lower left, then back in and across to come out again through the cockade on the lower right. Then it goes back in again and out at the cockades upper right, then back in and across again over to the upper left, back in and tied off.
So it would seem the cockade and plume holder brace each other.
I would presume that the now missing button was secured on the back of the cockade with a thong or wedge of leather. This looks like the same system as the KGL Belgic cap at Celle.

Eddie

Thanks Gregger

interesting to see the cockade attachment so clearly.

The button would be so high as to be over the top of the cap.

What is the leather tab in the bottom photo? The cap makers label usually goes in the crown and its along side that.

Do you have more of the photos? What is the maker name?
John Waller

I'm confused about the colour of the cockade. Why is it not black? Even the thread shows no sign of blacking.
Gregger

I have no idea why the cockades are not black. The tab of leather inside the cap is the tuft/plume holder, right behind the cockade on the inside. Here is a shot of the label, and the second cap with just a fragment of its cockade - which may have been black.
Gregger

Here is a shot of the Belgic from the KGL as seen elsewhere on the forum. It has the same high mounted, half a cockade, this time black, which looks to be the same pressed leather pattern. We would assume it also has the same method of attachment to the tuft/plume holder inside. We can see how the thread might pull through some parts of the cockade, allowing it to tilt inward. This Belgic is by the same maker as the above stove.
John Waller

Just a thought. Could the surving fragment be faded red? Wellington ordered the addition of  red cockades when the army marched into Spain. Usually re-enactors back the black leather cockade with a disc of red material. Could they have had red leather cockades?

What is the provenance of the cap?
Neibelungen

While  it's  possible that it was  red coloured, a  lot  of the time  cheaper  leathers would  have had a tannin and ferric  oxide wash  (rusty nails  in a vinegar solution) to  create a blacked finish.
Over time this tends to promote degradation of the leather,  making  it both brittle and  a reddish oxidised  appearence,  a bit like red rot.
Gregger

It is interesting to note that the cockade and the plume holder inside the cap are sewn together and applied at the same time.
Also of note is that they were put on the cap before the plate was put on, and it would appear they were meant to stay on.
So it would seem the plume can be inserted and taken off without affecting the cockade. The same system seems to have been employed whether is was a stove pipe or Belgic.
Gregger

Here is my attempt to illustrate the numbered holes through which the thread attached the plume socket and cockade.
John Waller

Gregger wrote:
Here is my attempt to illustrate the numbered holes through which the thread attached the plume socket and cockade.


Thanks Gregger. I'm making one at the moment and will give that technique a try. I usually sew in the holder and then attach the cockade with wire after fitting the plate. I can see that the technique illustrated would save on thread and time. Every day is a school day q2
Neibelungen

It woulds make sense, since the felt part (cap and wool tuft) was replaced yearly, while the leather parts (peak, cocade and plate) every two.
Hence once a year the cocade and plume tab would be removed and put onto a new body.

It's  interesting that the linings rarely show much evidence  of resewing, so may have been included as part of the cap rather than a two year leather part.
Also, why so few O/R's survive.  They were disposable and designed to  be worn to destruction so would be far more likely to be of little resale/use at the end of the year.

Unlike most repro caps these things were not designed to last a long time so (unlike officer's caps) they do tend to be roughly put together
Gregger

I can't decided whether the thread starts as previously stated, or on the front of hole 9 on the socket, and ends behind hole 1 in a knot. Either way there isn't much room to work in, but it might be a bit easier to start up at the crown edge and finish a little lower. If this is the case, then the thread may loop around a thread under the socket tab, and tie off there out of sight.
Gregger

I realize the cockade on the KGL Belgic shako may be the same pressed design as the 1806, but it is only 1 9/16th inches in diameter, much smaller than the (what looks like) 2 inches on the 1806.
Eddie

John Waller wrote:
Just a thought. Could the surving fragment be faded red? Wellington ordered the addition of  red cockades when the army marched into Spain. Usually re-enactors back the black leather cockade with a disc of red material. Could they have had red leather cockades?

What is the provenance of the cap?



A ha! I was thinking along exactly the same lines, John and you beat me to it !  A bit unlikely though.
Gregger

John Waller wrote:
Just a thought. Could the surving fragment be faded red? Wellington ordered the addition of  red cockades when the army marched into Spain. Usually re-enactors back the black leather cockade with a disc of red material. Could they have had red leather cockades?

What is the provenance of the cap?


The two stove pipe shako are in the museum system in Hereford.

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