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Help with Old Soldier Unit Photograph


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Need some help identifying this old photo of a group of soliders. It appears to be Span-Am war or sometime between then and the Civil War. The flag being held by a soldier looks like it may have a year of 1889 (also has council number but can't see it). All of there hats have "Welcome" and "45" badges. They all appear to be holding Springfield Model 1873 .45-70 rifles (any connection between rifles and hat badges? never seen a "Welcome" badge) and are all wearing what looks like Civil War period US belt buckles. That's about all I can tell from it. Any ideas?

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Kepies of this style were worn until 1892. The rifles could be '69's, '73's or '84's, so I would date the photo in that era. Officers (see the man at the left) typically wore the 5-button coat in the field until the undress coat was adopted in '92, so I am leaning toward the middle of that era.

 

I wonder if the flag is Civil War era though -- they did add lettering like this then, but how long those flags were used is unknown to me.

 

G.


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