View Full Version : Field Uniform for Sgt Major

03-24-2006, 11:00 AM
We have created a Sgt Major position in our association and want to do it right. So far we have done a fair amount of research on both early and late war. We know what they're supposed to do, where they're supposed to be in formations etc., and what the dress uniform is for the Sgt Maj. What we want to be sure of is exactly what the "duty or field" uniform is.
We have so far only been able to find one picture or painting indicating what is believed to be the uniform. That painting is of the Sgt Maj of the 54th Mass., which shows him in the same field uniform as the other NCOs. Would appreciate any information or direction to sources that would help in doing a bit more research on the subject.

Rich Holt
71st PVI

03-24-2006, 11:12 AM
Our Sgt Major wears a shell or frock with the correct stripes. As a weapon he wears a the red cotton or wool NCO Sash, and a NCO Sword. And that is it. Hope it helps.

03-24-2006, 02:09 PM
Kautz, Customs of Service for Non-commissioned Officers and Soldiers, 541-551. The Sergeant Major spends most of his time on staff duty around headquarters, including keeping the time, so he should have a good watch or two. It seems logical to me that his field uniform was a frock or shell without the shoulder scales, sash, baldric and sword, and with headgear of choice, perhaps a high-quality kepi or civilian hat. As the highest-ranking enlisted man, he would take his cue from the commanding officer and pretty much dress at the same level of formality as the staff officers. He can of course dress above this if he so chooses.

03-25-2006, 12:01 PM
A Jr. Officer frock would be most appropriate as it is a staff position. Also chevrons are of silk, not worsted wool tape.

03-25-2006, 08:47 PM
Joe, it might be good if I always mention that I portray a Regular and my answers are from that perspective; I'll try to remember to do that.

To my memory I've never seen a pic of a sergeant major in a junior officer's frock, which in itself means almost nothing, but I'm also dubious about the notion that a Regular Army sergeant major would wear one in the first place. Regulars are all about the Regulations, after all. That's why the men in group pics of Regulars look more alike than one finds in most pics of Volunteers.