Clothing and Equipment Guidelines

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The members of the Augusta County Militia pride themselves on adherence to strict levels of historical accuracy in terms of clothing and equipment. The reproductions we use are made of materials available in the late eighteenth century and constructed using methodology from the period.

Below is a list of general guidelines. Every event is different, and we modify our impressions based on what unit or group of people we are portraying as well as the geographic location of the event. This list is not all inclusive. It is meant to provide a general frame of reference. For example, when portraying a Continental Army unit, we will incorporate uniform items and equipment appropriate to the unit we’re portraying and what they had when the historical event occurred.

Specific guidelines for each event are made available well in advance.

See our resources page for places to research material culture

Guidelines

General

-Facial hair more than a two-three day untrimmed growth is prohibited

-All garments must be an appropriate style for a member of the middling or lower classes in the period portrayed. Proper fit and hand-finishing are encouraged. All fabric must be appropriate to the period.

-No modern jewelry (wedding bands excepted), footwear or eyeglasses.

-Military clothing is discouraged unless we are fielding as a Continental Army unit.

-All food products must be free of modern packaging. Likewise, use of modern tobacco products, beverage containers, or communication devices in camp is prohibited. In all cases, exercise discretion.

Shirts
Best: Hand-stitched checked, white, or natural colored linen shirt with narrow band cuffs (less than 1” wide) closed with thread buttons or made for sleeve buttons (cuff links).
Acceptable: Machine stitched checked, striped, or white linen or wool shirts.

Neckwear
Best: Silk, linen, or cotton neckerchiefs; linen neck stocks, or linen rollers, well-tied around the neck
Acceptable: Machine hemmed neckerchiefs or linen rollers.

Hats and Caps
Best: Hand-finished, round-blocked, black wool or beaver felt hats. Cut and cocked to a manner appropriate to the 1770s-1780s. Knit wool caps such as Monmouth or Dutch mutts
Acceptable: In camp, linen cap constructed as a tube and gathered on one end.
Discouraged: Grey or brown wool felt hats and oval blocked hats.

Coats
Best: Hand-finished, well-fit, wool broadcloth coats of drab, black, grey, brown, green, red, or blue straight bodied or cutaway. Broadcloth jackets or sailor’s jackets with short skirts and mariner’s cuffs in the same colors. Linen outer garments in white or natural shades are allowed.
Acceptable: Similar to the above with minimal visible machine stitching.

Jackets and Waistcoats
Best: Hand-finished, well-fit, single or double breasted, skirted or square cut, with or without sleeves of drab, black, grey, brown, green, red or blue broadcloth, kersey, or serge. Waistcoats or jackets of plain or stripe linen or linsey-woolsey.
Acceptable: Well-fit, single or double breasted, skirted or square cut waistcoats of linen, linsey-woolsey, cotton, cotton velvet, wool plush or silk, in solid colors or stripes with minor visible machine stitching. Sleeved waistcoats/jackets are acceptable as the primary outer garment.

Hunting Shirt
Best: Hunting shirt: Hand-finished, natural colored osnaburg linen or linsey woolsey, narrow wristbands, small cape, fringe edges, and split down the front. Hunting shirts of other colors such as blue, or red, or with contrasting fringe.
Acceptable: Similar to the above with minimal visible machine stitching.

Portraying a company of the 13th Virginia Regiment at the Fort Pitt Museum, August 2017(Photo courtesy of Brandyn Charlton)

Breeches
Best: Hand-finished, well-fit leather breeches, breeches with buckled knee bands or ties in black, brown, grey, drab, blue, green, kersey, linsey-woolsey, serge, broadcloth or linen.
Acceptable: Well-fit breeches with minor visible machine stitching.

Trousers
Best: Hand-finished trousers of striped, checked or plain linen, hemp, or ticking.
Acceptable: Well-fit trousers with minor visible machine stitching.

Socks and Stockings
Best: White, grey, black, brown, blue, or green wool yarn or worsted stockings or socks seamed with back seams.
Acceptable: White, grey, black, brown, blue, or green stockings or socks of wool yarn, worsted, linen, or cotton.

Shoes
Best: Hand-finished, short or long quartered, round toe shoes with black waxed calf uppers, fitted for buckles or ties. Shoe boots, half-boots (high-lows), of black waxed-calf. Properly constructed pucker toe moccasins made of brain tan leather for specific impressions.
Acceptable: Machine made, black leather, shoes with buckles or ties, high-lows.

Leg Wear
Best: No leg wear OR well-fit, hand-finished spatterdashers or half-gaiters of black, blue, brown, or drab wool. Undecorated Indian leggings of blue or red wool.

Greatcoat/Blanket Coats
Best: Well-fitted, hand finished dark blue, red, grey, brown, or drab colored heavy broadcloth, kersey, bearskin, or fear-naught wool. Single small cape not to extend past the shoulder seam. Hand-sewn blanket coats of an acceptable manufacture and style of wool blankets (see below), hand-stitched, trimmed in wool or silk tape.
Acceptable: Similar, with some exposed machine stitching. Green greatcoats in small numbers.

Accouterments

Cartridge Pouches
Best: Small, simple leather hunting pouch with narrow shoulder strap and simple, powder horn with leather or wool tape strap.
Acceptable: Early pattern, soft body American military cartridge box with leather or linen webbing strap

Guns
Best: English or Pennsylvania style fowler,  .50 to .80 cal. Rifle or fowler of a documented period pattern.
Acceptable: 1728 – 1756 Pattern Long Land Pattern British Ordnance Musket, 1728 Pattern French Musket, Dutch Muskets, Committee of Safety Muskets.

Side Arms
Best: No side arms.
Acceptable: Civilian pattern hunting swords or hangers with non-military pattern carriages. Hatchets carried in packs, English pattern trade/butcher knives worn on a belt. Civilian pattern bayonet fitted to fowler and carried in American style bayonet carriage with leather or linen web strap.

Belts
Best: No belt.
Acceptable: Narrow belt of brown or black tanned leather with brass or small, square iron buckle.

 

Drill, Fort Pitt Museum, 2017 (Photo courtesy Brandyn Charlton)

Knapsacks
Best: Hemp webbing blanket strap or tumpline blanket roll. Blanket worn “horse collar” style over shoulder. Linenmarket wallet. Unpainted “Uhl” pattern knapsack of osnaburg or Russia sheeting. Acceptable: Painted or unpainted“Uhl” pattern knapsack, Warner knapsack

Haversacks
Best: No haversacks
Acceptable: Market wallet or natural linen haversack

Canteen
Best: Wood staved canteen with hemp, linen, or leather strap.
Discouraged: Tin military pattern canteen, earthen ware canteen, wood cheese box pattern canteen or gourd.

Blankets
Best: White, hand woven: Dutch or “von Reck” pattern blanket with blue and or red stripes, check or stripe civilian blankets, points blankets, rose blankets.
Acceptable: Plain white blankets. British military pattern blankets

Camp Equipment
Preferred: Hand-sewn linen tents with wooden pegs. Preferred kettle is 2-3 gallon
made of tin. Handsewn linen tarpaulins. Felling axes and entrenching tools of documented patterns.
Acceptable: Cotton canvas tents with no door ties. Cast iron kettles of a style
appropriate to the period are acceptable.

ACM Camp at Fort Pitt Museum
             (Photo courtesy Fort Pitt Museum)

                                                                                                                 

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