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32nd National Guard State of New York- headdress insignia-Helmet/shako plate?


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I'm having trouble determining on what headdress this large (5 1/2 inches wide X 4 inches high) insignia of the 32nd National Guard State of New York (32nd N.G.S.N.Y.) would have been worn. I'm wondering if it would it have been worn on the cloth/felt helmet or the leather topped-shako, or some other form of headdress?

 

Any guidance on this would be greatly appreciated. If possible, an image of the plate on the correct headdress or a photo of it being worn during the period of use would be amazing though, I acknowledge, may be the "bridge too far!" Thank you.

 

with kindest regards and best wishes,

 

Tim

 

 

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I would think it would be for the shako

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Thank you Wake1941. I'm inclined to agree with you, thinking that the shape and size lend itself more likely to fit better on the shako than the helmet. That said, and with respect, have you seen one so used?

 

with best wishes,

 

Tim

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I have not but the NY guard has a ton of different insignias they wore on the shako. Ive seen quite a few different styles. I guess it could be possible that it may have been worn with the cloth covered pith helmet.

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Thank you. I'm betting that you are far more likely right about it being used on a shako more so than a helmet. Noting your 1,738 posts (as opposed to my 9!) suggests that your instincts will take you, more often than not, to drawing the right conclusions. Very much appreciated!

 

with best regards,

 

Tim

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No problem post count on here means nothing someone with 10 post might have as much info as someone with 10000. Im assuming the back has the wire post ?

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Just as it should be, a nice badge I just sold one for another regiment not all that long ago

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That is good news, thank you, with so much stuff that "isn't-quite-right" out there. I find that period's uniforms and insignia quite interesting, so it is good to get a proper ID on this one.

 

all the best,

 

Tim

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  • 8 months later...

For my first post on this forum, I would like to show this helmet plate in its original configuration on a pickelhaube produced by Deecken of New York. In addition, a brief article on this unit from Brooklyn Magazine...

 

 

 

 

 

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Any reason they put the plate on an imperial German Officers spike helmet ???

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As the article mentions, members of this unit were of German ancestry. The were a number of Militia and National Guard units that wore German-style uniforms with pickelhauben that were either of German or American manufacture. Here is another:

 

 

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I wouldnt have imagine uniform regulations would allow them to wear foreign headgear. Very interesting, super neat it has the carrying case as well

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In the period from before the Civil War to the turn of the last century, State and local units were allowed a great deal of leeway in their uniforms, and so units inspired by those of France and North Africa (the Zouaves) also popped up. These American pickelhauben are very tough to find...

 

 

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The 32nd was disbanded in 1892. It fell under a cloud in its last few years and had trouble with recruiting, among other problems. The pickelhaube style became popular after the Prussians defeated the French in their 1870 war. At that point the Prussians were considered the world's best army by many and a lot of their doctrine (to include helmet style) was adopted by nations around the world.

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Arran - I know of no uniform regulations for the 32nd, or generally other units either. However the 1879 NY Adjutant General's Report contains a description of the uniforms that NYNG units wore to the annual inspector general's inspection. This is a snapshot of that year, but it should yield a list of units that wore this style of helmet at that time. You'd have to read the inspection reports for each unit to develop that list (each is a page or less in length). For the 32nd it notes black leather helmets with a spike, so that's the kind of phrase you'd have to look for. The details of the helmet for the 32nd were placed in the "notes" section of the IG's report for that unit, so be sure to read each report in its entirety. The AG Report for 1879 is available online from the site of the NY State Military Museum - one at the home page click on the Research menu item, then the Adjutant Generals Reports menu item and pick the 1879 file. Go to page 230 to start reading the reports by unit.

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I haven't. I can't find my copy of Gero's book on NYNG photographs so I don't know if he has the 32nd covered there or not. Maybe somebody on the forum can confirm? The other place you can look is in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle archives and search for thirty-second regiment. A photo might be pictured, although the newspapers then didn't do much with photos but typically used drawings. Another place to look is in one of the New York City German newspapers of the period. The 32nd was a very German regiment and would have been a source of pride to the local German community. Maybe they contain an image. I don't see any of those newspapers online, however.

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  • 1 month later...

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