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of the War of Independence

Military Modelling September 1975.

Some of our regular colour artists get together to provide an exciting selection of uniform ideas for modellers.

1. A Grenadier of the 37th Regiment of Foot, 1776. He wears a black bearskin cap with a black metal plate and white metal ornamentation. His armament is the short land pattern “Brown Bess” musket. Plate by D. A. Moss.
2. An Officer of the 2nd Rhode Island Regiment, 1779, dressed in distinctive three quarter length cotton hunting shirt with drawn cotton fringe edges. He carries the famous American “Kentucky” long rifle (see also our colour feature on page 550), and a haversack on the left hip. Plate by B. Fosten.
3. A Grenadier of the “Gatineau” Regiment, France, 1780. This regiment played a prominent part in the Siege of Yorktown. The Grenadier is armed with the French 1777 pattern musket. Plate by D. A. Moss.
4. Man of a Light Company of the “Von Riedesel” Regiment, Brunswick 1776. One of the many German units serving with the British in the American War, this typical infantryman wears a black leather cap with a plume in the Brunswick colours. The cap front plate is edged in brass and depicts the horse of Lower Saxony also in brass. The armament here is the Prussian 1740 pattern musket. Plate by D. A. Moss.
5. An Iroquois warrior in the pay of the British. Note the turbanlike cap sometimes made of cloth and at other times, feathers laid on soft leather. The hair was worn either long and loose or, more often, shaven leaving only a scalp lock dressed with shells and quills. Plate by D. S. V. Fosten.
6. An Officer of the Anspach-Bayreuth Jager Battalion 1781, another example of German troops in America in the War of Independence. First sent to America in 1777, the Jager Company was augmented by a further Company in 1778 and in 1781, a third Company was added and the Battalion commanded by Baron Von Reitzenstein. Plate by D. S. V. Fosten.
7. An Officer of the Hesse-Cassel Infantry Regiment “Erbprinz” 1780. Reckoned to be the best of the German troops to serve in America, the uniform of this office has been adapted for the hard campaigning conditions found in North America. Gone is the elaborate embroidery from the coat, and also the gorget and espontoon; his only badges of rank are the woven sash and sword. He has armed himself with a Jager “Buchsen” (rifle) or fusil. His breeches and gaiters are covered by the ubiquitous overalls made from either ticken, canvas, or skin. The regiment arrived in America on August 12th 1776, and was part of the forces which surrendered at Yorktown. In 1780 the regiment reverted to its former “musketeer” roll and the fusilier cap and title were dropped. The cocked hat was taken into wear and the regimental facings were changed from pink to crimson. Plate by R. J. Marrion.
8. Officer Quebec Militia, 1776. This unit served with great distinction during the American siege of Quebec, defending Cape Diamond on 31.12.1775. They took part in the street, and house-to-house, fighting which preceded General Benedict Arnold's retreat. The unit was stood down in May 1776. Plate by R. J. Marrion.
9. Rifleman of the 1st Georgia, U.S.A. 1777. Similar in many respects to 2, this uniform features the cheap hunting shirt which many insurgent states were compelled to use due to the shortage of orthodox uniforms. He is armed with the famous American Long Rifle. Plate by D. A. Moss.

Other 18th Century Illustrations of Costume and Soldiers