Cornet in Undress, 1857


In 1857 the Queen's Bays went from Ireland to India, arriving at Calcutta in late November after a four month voyage. The uniform worn by this officer is stable dress. The 1855 Dress Regulations describe the stable jacket, 'scarlet round jacket, single breasted, with plain collar and pointed cuffs of the regimental facing.' The 1861 DR has the same description except that the words 'edged with gold lace of regimental pattern' have been added. It would seem that dress regulations followed regimental custom. The facings are certainly pale buff here. All accounts of the history of the Bays uniform state that the facings were changed from black to buff in 1855 at the same time as the coatee was changed to the tunic. In my caption to the 1852 painting of Captain Pedder I said that the facings had changed in 1848. That was the year that the coatee was changed to the short-tailed type. That painting certainly looks as if it has a buff collar and cuff and I leave it to others to decide.

The 1855 DR also talks about 10 small buttons down the front to fasten the jacket but the 1861 omits this and makes no mention of the 50 or so gilt ball buttons decorating the edge of this jacket. No subsequent Dress Regulations describe this feature even though it remained as standard on all cavalry mess/stable jackets. The shoulders had twisted gold cords with a small gilt button. Two small buttons were also on the back of the wrists. No badges of rank were worn on the collar.

The undress white buffalo leather pouch belt supported the silver fronted dress pouch-belt which can just be seen behind his arm. The sword is suspended from an undress white buffalo leather belt, two and a half inches wide, like the pouch-belt, and fastened with the gilt rectangular plate. The sword knot is of white leather with a gold tassel, the same as in dress uniform. His trousers are the same as worn in dress, having a herring-bone pattern gold lace stripe, one and three quarter inches wide. He is holding the peaked forage cap with a gold laced edge. Unfortunately the lace pattern is indistinct.


Regimental details | Uniforms




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by Stephen Luscombe