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Early US Navy Frocks (Jumpers)


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#1 Mustang.CDR

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 09:48 AM

These were listed in an auction today and I had been watching them for some time. I set a bidding limit and as it turned out I was high bidder. They were listed as Spanish American War however, I think this is not correct. The white frock may be earlier and the blue later. I would appreciated any comments on age. I will attach another picture of a makers label that makes me believe that the white frock was issued as early as 1871, re-issued in 85 and again in 95. the maker is a Cincinnati OH tailor that may be William Beck & Sons but hard to tell until its in hand.   

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  • 2.jpg

Edited by Mustang.CDR, 11 July 2018 - 09:50 AM.


#2 Mustang.CDR

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 09:49 AM

Here is the maker's label.

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#3 sigsaye

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 02:55 PM

The blue jumper is USN, undress blue jumper. This style was issued between 1917 and into the 1950s when the draw string was removed.

The white jumper is NOT USN. The piping on collar and cuffs is incorrect in both number and style. And there are no stars on the collar. The cuff piping in in the wrong location. The style of the neck opening also is not consistent with USN.

Its possible that it was made for the civilian market, Steam Ship company, Yatch crew or foreign market.

#4 MastersMate

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Posted 12 July 2018 - 03:05 PM

Possibly flip the white one inside out.. Does the collar and V neck and cuffs lay out any different ??



#5 carnut63

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Posted 12 July 2018 - 08:39 PM

I saw those also but am pretty sure the white jumper is not USN. It maybe some civilian nautical uniform...just can't be sure.

#6 sigsaye

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Posted 13 July 2018 - 04:42 AM

Possibly flip the white one inside out.. Does the collar and V neck and cuffs lay out any different ??

. If you look closely at the neck opening of the white one, you can see button holes. The neck is designed to button up. Its not USN, not sure what it is, but not USN.

#7 MastersMate

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Posted 13 July 2018 - 07:04 AM

The white one is a little bit close to, but not quite there, to the description of an 1870s white frock of the Revenue Cutter Service. Not RCS..



#8 Justin B.

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Posted 13 July 2018 - 07:06 AM

The material in the close-up looks like a relatively light cotton weave, examples I have seen are a more heavy-duty twill.



#9 suwanneetrader

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Posted 13 July 2018 - 09:37 AM

William Beck and later Beck Costumes Cincinnati was as late as the1980's a large warehouse type building 3 to 5 stories (I do not remember for sure)  They rented costumes and props all over the US for the theater and movies.  Half of one floor was a sewing room to repair and make costumes (as in the case of CW uniforms they had a few originals and used them for patterns to make others).  They had at least a half dozen commercial machines.  I remember a large wooden barrel full of brass buttons.  If a 1920's Police Uniform came back missing a button the seamstress would grab one brass and the same size and sew it on even if it was a Virginia Confederate one.

I helped a friend, Tom Kerr haul out 3 or 4 truckloads when he bought all the remaining stock after Mr Beck had sold all the guns, swords, uniforms, and other more collectable items.  Even when all good stuff was thought to be gone I got a Cook & Brothers New Orleans  Naval Cutlass and an engraved Brass US scabbard from 1840-60's , both had fallen behind a large drawer in the bottom of one of the floor to ceiling cedar lined cabinets on the Shakespearean Floor.

I do not want to bore you but this is some history that should be saved.  We got in there because one day another friend of Toms, His name was Oscar  Brewer, he was a picker but the only thing he collected was Foreign coins.  He saw a wooden washing machine in Beck's front window so went in to try to buy it.  Mr Beck who was at least 70 said he wanted to retire and was going sell out.  He told him his Dad and Grandfather or Uncle (I do not remember which)  used to go to Government Surplus Sales/Auctions with Bannerman, etc. and buy huge amounts.  They even sold weapons to foreign countries.  He took Oscar up to the 3rd floor and showed him a pickup size pile of long guns.

He said to pick one and he would sell it to him.  Oscar picked up one and a piece fell out (Later we learned it was a Colt Revolving musket and the cylinder was loose)  Oscar said he did not want that one as it was broke.(he did not know what it was) He then picked out a Colt Special Model 1861 or 1862 musket and took it back to Tom.  That started the gold rush.  There were drawers full of percussion pistols.  Mr Beck was so trusting he just let people wander thru-out the building and bring him items they wanted to the first floor.  As is usually the case some could not be satisfied with getting bargain prices they started stealing things.  So finally only Tom, his brotherinlaw, myself and a handful of others could go above the 1st floor by themselves.    Well just an old-timers tale of the good-ol-days.  Richard



#10 sigsaye

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Posted 13 July 2018 - 02:03 PM

The white one is a little bit close to, but not quite there, to the description of an 1870s white frock of the Revenue Cutter Service. Not RCS..

. I have enough to keep up with USN. Glad for your input!

#11 Mustang.CDR

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Posted 14 July 2018 - 04:17 AM

The blue jumper is USN, undress blue jumper. This style was issued between 1917 and into the 1950s when the draw string was removed.

The white jumper is NOT USN. The piping on collar and cuffs is incorrect in both number and style. And there are no stars on the collar. The cuff piping in in the wrong location. The style of the neck opening also is not consistent with USN.

Its possible that it was made for the civilian market, Steam Ship company, Yatch crew or foreign market.

 

This style of neck opening with the button down front DOES NOT preclude USN! If you look at the book "Bluejackets"  by Ron Field as well as Military Images magazine November/December 2008 issue, you can see numerous sailors wearing frocks with button down fronts very similar to this one.



#12 sigsaye

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Posted 14 July 2018 - 08:34 AM

 
This style of neck opening with the button down front DOES NOT preclude USN! If you look at the book "Bluejackets"  by Ron Field as well as Military Images magazine November/December 2008 issue, you can see numerous sailors wearing frocks with button down fronts very similar to this one.

. Yes, I own that book and several others. Those frocks with the button collars tended to have been made by the sailors themselves. However, in 1871, the Navy began to standardize enlisted uniforms ( huge stocks of standard issue ( non button) frocks. In 1866, the Navy also standardized the stripes and stars on cuffs and collars, which we still use today. In 1886, the Navy changed the style of the frock again by going with the inset sleeve rather than the drop sleeve of the 1860s, and curved the collar opening rather than the straight cut of earlier styles. The dates on this item put it way out of something from the Civil War. Also, the style and cut make it something other than USN.

#13 suwanneetrader

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Posted 14 July 2018 - 07:51 PM

 

 


Edited by suwanneetrader, 14 July 2018 - 07:54 PM.



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