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I'm posting photos of three cavalry guidons in collection. The first, troop F 3rd cavalry is a standard M1885 pattern. Measuring 27" on the pole and 43" on the fly. It is made from the regulation light weight cotton. The second, troop A 14th cavalry conforms to the M1885 dimensions but is made from a heavier, tighter woven cotton. The letters and numbers are also made from a heavier cotton. The 14th cavalry was stationed in the Phillippines in the early 1900's. This guidon could possibly be theater made. The third, troop c 127th cavalry is a later, mid thirties, regulation guidon. It is smaller than the '85 pattern. Measuring 19" on the pole and 28" on the fly. The change in size took place in the mid 1930's.

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post-2782-0-70558000-1456783031.jpg

 

 

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Very nice guidons.

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Nice!

 

I have a collection of mostly WW2 unit guidons but the Cavalry ones have always eluded me!

Mr.JERRY

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Thanks for the kind words. I've specialized in cavalry saddles and horse equipment for quite a few years. These three represent about 45 years of searching. I never had any interest in non cavalry items. I've had a few infantry guidons in the past, but traded them off.

Best, George

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I found some info on the 127th Cavalry.

 

 

The last mounted cavalry units were the 127th and 129th Cavalry Squadrons, activated late in WW II and inactivated by 1947.

 

 

It was clear that horses were being banished from the last cavalry unit and, for all practical purposes, from the Army. The last mounted cavalry unit was the 129th Cavalry Squadron, activated 01 May 1944 for tactical instruction at the Cavalry School, which was deactivated 06 February 1945. However, the 127th Cav deactivated at Ft Riley in 1947. Also, consider the Horse Platoon, 16th Constabulary Squad, in Berlin (originally the Horse Platoon, 78th Cavalry Recon Troop, 78th Div. The last active cavalry post was Ft Riley, KS, where the Cavalry School deactivated on 31 October 1946 or November 1946, including horses & training detachment (129th Squadron?). The last U.S. cavalry horse in U.S. service died on 24 May 1959. The last mounted (horse or mule) US Army unit was the 4th FA Bn & 35th QM Pack Co, both deactivated at Ft Carson, CO, 15 February 1957.

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I found some info on the 127th Cavalry.

 

 

The last mounted cavalry units were the 127th and 129th Cavalry Squadrons, activated late in WW II and inactivated by 1947.

 

 

It was clear that horses were being banished from the last cavalry unit and, for all practical purposes, from the Army. The last mounted cavalry unit was the 129th Cavalry Squadron, activated 01 May 1944 for tactical instruction at the Cavalry School, which was deactivated 06 February 1945. However, the 127th Cav deactivated at Ft Riley in 1947. Also, consider the Horse Platoon, 16th Constabulary Squad, in Berlin (originally the Horse Platoon, 78th Cavalry Recon Troop, 78th Div. The last active cavalry post was Ft Riley, KS, where the Cavalry School deactivated on 31 October 1946 or November 1946, including horses & training detachment (129th Squadron?). The last U.S. cavalry horse in U.S. service died on 24 May 1959. The last mounted (horse or mule) US Army unit was the 4th FA Bn & 35th QM Pack Co, both deactivated at Ft Carson, CO, 15 February 1957.

Thanks for the information on the 127th.

George.

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  • 2 weeks later...
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I've always thought that the change in size to a smaller guidon around the same time as the transition from horse to mechanized, was in part due to the fact that it would be mounted to the antenna of a relatively fast moving scout car or jeep, Any thoughts?

Best, George

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I've always thought that the change in size to a smaller guidon around the same time as the transition from horse to mechanized, was in part due to the fact that it would be mounted to the antenna of a relatively fast moving scout car or jeep, Any thoughts?

Best, George

That might be a possibility, but I'm tending to think not. In the 20s-30s guidons in general were or seemed to be oversized, I think by the late 30s-early 40s they became smaller in size.

 

 

Here are but two examples of oversize guidons, they're Infantry, but we're pretty certain these oversize types were a fasion throughout the Army in most if not all Branches.

 

 

The 17th Infantry 6th Division Ft Crook Nebraska 1933.post-1963-1313076369.jpg

 

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B Co 16th Infantry 1st Division Governors Island NYC 1938

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Guidons had a consistent size from 1834-1931.

1834 - Army Regulations authorize a silk, 27-inch by 41-inch red-over-white guidon for the Regiment of Dragoons (now the 1st Cavalry). It had a 15 inch forked swallow tail, with the letters "U.S." in white on the upper half and the company letter in red on the lower. It was carried on a nine-foot lance with a finnial at the top in the shape of an arrowhead (or spearhead). Color Bearers would attach a small leather cup or boot to the stirrup leathers on the off side of their saddle (see post on saddles below) to facilitate carrying the flags while mounted.

 

In 1895 Wool bunting guidons were established for everyday use. 1895 - Army Regulations: "Each troop of Cavalry will have a silken guidon...to be used only in battle, campaign, or on occasions of ceremony." The regulation further states: "Each troop will also have a service guidon made of bunting or other suitable material" which was for daily use.

 

Silk guidons were abolished by 1922 - Change to Army Regulations 129 abolishes silk guidons from service.

 

Guidons were reduced in size during 1931 - Army Regulation 260-10 reduces the standard size of Army guidons to 20 inches by 27 3/4 inches with a 10 inch forked swallowtail.

 

Please note that I recently sold a S Troop, 3rd Cavalry Philadelphia Intermediate Quartermaster Depot guidon Dated May 14, 1926. This guidon measured 27 by 40. This guidon was used in Washington DC by the 3rd Cavalry for escorting the President etc. This silk guidon was manufactured 5 years after silk material was abolished for guidons.

 

By U.S. Army regulation these guidons look to be from 1895-1931.

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