Sergeant's Sash


This photo of Sergeant-Major William Napier VC shows him wearing the Sergeants' sash on the left shoulder as was the custom in the 13th Light Infantry. Other photos of him in the same uniform show the sash on the right shoulder but the angle of the whistle attached to the lower end of the chains indicates that this photo shows the correct wearing of the sash. From 1855 until 1898 officers throughout the army wore the sash on the left shoulder, but after 1898 the sash was worn around the waist by officers, but continued to be worn on the shoulder by sergeants. The 13th, being the only regiment to have it on the left were distinctive and unique. This photo dates before 1862 when Napier was discharged.


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by Stephen Luscombe