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26th Cavalry, Philippine Scouts, Uniform on eBay


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... Allegedly.

 

This uniform is being sold by the same seller who’s auctioning off Sam Nesmith’s collection. cbuehler, kiaiokalewa, and I did a deep dive into his 91st Coast Artillery (PS) uniform, and figured why not do one on this for educational and reference purposes.

 

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Figure 1. The listing of the alleged 26th Cavalry (PS) uniform

 

I’ll break down my analysis by the following:

1. The Uniform Style and Color

2. The Collar Brass

3. The Patch

 

Hypothesis: A collector put this uniform together and sold it to Sam Nesmith as an authentic 26th Cavalry (PS) corporal’s jacket

 

I can’t really speak to the Machine Gun Marksmanship Badge, but this thread helps

~Sean

WANTED: Philippine Department & Division patch variations, uniforms, & other items.
~In honor of Private Placido Conejos, 14th Engineer Regt. (Philippine Scouts). KIA on Bataan, 02/13/1942

My links: Lolo's (Grandfather's) WWII Service | My Mini-Museum of Sea Lions and Carabaos ASMIC Newsletter Editor (4653) | PSHS Nat. Secretary & Webmaster

 

 

 

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1. Uniform Style and Color

 

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Figure 2. Front view of the alleged 26th Cavalry (PS) uniform

 

In the thread about the 91st CA (PS) uniform, I brought up the fact that the color was similar to my 26th Cavalry (PS) 1st lieutenant’s standing collar jacket. I mentioned that the officer brought it from Hawaii to the Philippines. We know he did because of the Hawaiian Department orders found in his pocket.

 

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Figure 3. Left: The 26th Cavalry (PS) 1st lieutenant’s uniform placed on top of a Philippine-made khaki uniform. Right: Close up of the insignia and the papers found in this uniform’s pocket.

 

The alleged 26th Cavalry (PS) corporal’s jacket matches in both color and style. Most likely, this, too, was made in or at least brought to the Philippines from Hawaii. 

 

Why would a Philippine Scout Corporal import a uniform from Hawaii? It just isn’t cost effective.

 

Verdict based on uniform color and style: Most likely made in Hawaii and not worn by a Philippine Scout 

~Sean

WANTED: Philippine Department & Division patch variations, uniforms, & other items.
~In honor of Private Placido Conejos, 14th Engineer Regt. (Philippine Scouts). KIA on Bataan, 02/13/1942

My links: Lolo's (Grandfather's) WWII Service | My Mini-Museum of Sea Lions and Carabaos ASMIC Newsletter Editor (4653) | PSHS Nat. Secretary & Webmaster

 

 

 

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2. Collar Brass

 

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Figure 4. The “US 26” collar disc on the uniform in question

 

The patina of both discs are similar, and that’s a good start. With this style uniform and Type I collar discs them to about 1924-1927.

 

Much like the “US 91” on the seller’s other uniform, the “26” is also soldered onto the collar disc. At a closer glance, it looks like someone filed down whatever number was stamped there and soldered on the “2” and “6.” 

 

Referencing Bob Capistrano’s article on Philippine Scout insignia, “US 26” collar discs were available and in use in the Philippines. Philippine insignia makers like Zamora could make them, too. 

 

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Figure 5. The bronzed 26th Cavalry (PS) collar discs from Bob Capistrano’s article on philippinescouts.org

 

Soldering on the “26” onto this collar disc means two things: a) there weren’t enough collar discs to supply the men at the time or 2) a collector fabricated this piece. 

 

Verdict based on the “26” collar brass: With the other uniform sporting a soldered “91” as well, I lean toward this being a collector-made piece.

~Sean

WANTED: Philippine Department & Division patch variations, uniforms, & other items.
~In honor of Private Placido Conejos, 14th Engineer Regt. (Philippine Scouts). KIA on Bataan, 02/13/1942

My links: Lolo's (Grandfather's) WWII Service | My Mini-Museum of Sea Lions and Carabaos ASMIC Newsletter Editor (4653) | PSHS Nat. Secretary & Webmaster

 

 

 

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3. The Patch

 

So I’ll break this analysis down of the Philippine Division patch by its authorization, and patch material and construction.

 

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Figure 6. The view of patches on the alleged 26th Cavalry (PS) uniform

 

****

 

Authorization: Can a 26th Cavalryman (PS) wear a Philippine Division SSI?

 

“Shoulder Patch - Philippine Division… was worn when the [26th Cavalry] regiment was first formed in 1922.”
- George Rummell, Jr. in “26th U.S. Cavalry Regiment ‘Philippine Scouts”

 

Although the 26th Cavalry (PS) was under the Philippine Department and authorized to wear only the Philippine Department Sea Lion patch, we have to look at the regimental history to explain why they would wear the Philippine Division patch in 1922.

 

On October 1, 1922, the Philippine Department transferred the personnel of the 25th Field Artillery Regiment (PS) to the newly formed 26th Cavalry Regiment (PS). Battery A, 25th FA (PS) became Troop A, 26th Cav. (PS), Battery B became Troop B, and so forth. Exceptions: Battery D became Troop G; the personnel from the battalion headquarters detachments and combat trains formed Machine Gun Troop Number Two.

 

Since the 25th FA (PS) was a subordinate unit to the Philippine Division prior to the transfer, these men would have worn the Philippine Division carabao SSI until they were furnished with new Philippine Department patches. 

 

So, in theory, there could be a 26th Cavalry (PS) uniform with a Philippine Division patch.

 

Here’s the catch with the uniform in question: the presence of gilt collar discs means this uniform would have been worn around 1924 to 1927. This means this corporal still wore the Philippine Division patch 2 to 5 years after the transition from field artillery to cavalry.

 

It could be possible that the Army had supply issues and couldn’t give the troops new Philippine Department Sea Lion patches within a year of transition, but 2 to 5 years after is very much a stretch.

~Sean

WANTED: Philippine Department & Division patch variations, uniforms, & other items.
~In honor of Private Placido Conejos, 14th Engineer Regt. (Philippine Scouts). KIA on Bataan, 02/13/1942

My links: Lolo's (Grandfather's) WWII Service | My Mini-Museum of Sea Lions and Carabaos ASMIC Newsletter Editor (4653) | PSHS Nat. Secretary & Webmaster

 

 

 

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Patch Material and Construction

 

This Philippine Division patch aims to mimic what other cavalry units did during the interwar period: place a piece of yellow felt underneath the corps or division patch to show it was the division or corps’ cavalry unit. 

 

The problem: the Philippine Division did not have a cavalry regiment. The Army assigned the 26th Cavalry (PS) to the corps-level Philippine Department.

 

In the other thread about the alleged 91st CA (PS) uniform, I took a closer look at the threads of the alleged 26th Cav. (PS) patch and found the yellow thread used to attach the carabao head to the red shield is the same thread the collector used to hand sew the yellow wool base onto the uniform. 

 

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Figure 7. Notice the similarities of the threads in the circled areas. This patch is a collector’s copy.

 

****

 

Verdict based on the patch: The patch is a collector-made copy. The seller has noted this in his listing.

 

Conclusion on the alleged 26th Cavalry (PS) uniform overall: Collector-made/assembled.

~Sean

WANTED: Philippine Department & Division patch variations, uniforms, & other items.
~In honor of Private Placido Conejos, 14th Engineer Regt. (Philippine Scouts). KIA on Bataan, 02/13/1942

My links: Lolo's (Grandfather's) WWII Service | My Mini-Museum of Sea Lions and Carabaos ASMIC Newsletter Editor (4653) | PSHS Nat. Secretary & Webmaster

 

 

 

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A note on Philippine Division SSI reproductions seen on eBay

 

eBay seller “nchs” offers a number of Philippine Division collector's copy SSIs. They have ones that look like the PQMD-made piece and one that has the earless carabao (I own and have inspected both repros). They also have a number of odd Phil. Div. patches constructed out of  different colored felt: one that had , and one that had a yellow border around the red shield. 

 

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Figure 8. The more “colorful” Philippine Division patches sold by eBay member nchs.

 

When I first saw these, I wondered, “what inspired nchs to create such odd variations of patches?”

 

At the 2014 ASMIC Convention in San Diego, an ASMIC member told me he had seen a collection of uniforms, each one had these really unique carabao patches that he’d never seen before. Now I wonder, was this member talking about Sam Nesmith’s collection?

 

And did Nesmith’s collection inspire the nchs patches? If so, it would seem that it did. Evidence?  The Phil. Div. patch with a yellow border around the shield (Figure 8, top row, middle. It’s constructed a little differently).

 

It will be interesting to see what else was in Nesmith’s collection. If it inspired the nchs patches, we can expect to see some oddball Phil. Div. patch variations on uniforms. 

 

Since the yellow bordered Phil. Div. patch represented the 26th Cav. (PS), I wouldn’t be surprised to see Nesmith’s collection produce a 14th Engineer (PS) uniform with the red and white patch, or a Scout MP one with the green-ish carabao.

 

It’s just an observation. No conclusions here. But we shall wait and see.

~Sean

WANTED: Philippine Department & Division patch variations, uniforms, & other items.
~In honor of Private Placido Conejos, 14th Engineer Regt. (Philippine Scouts). KIA on Bataan, 02/13/1942

My links: Lolo's (Grandfather's) WWII Service | My Mini-Museum of Sea Lions and Carabaos ASMIC Newsletter Editor (4653) | PSHS Nat. Secretary & Webmaster

 

 

 

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Not to hijack this thread, but having looked at the seller's other questionable items, I bought one

of the "humped up" uniforms being offered.  Someone put signal corps insignia and the wrong

buttons on this uniform.   But that's okay, I recognized the pig under the lipstick... and she's gorgeous!

 

Look closely at this seller's photo:     😁

 

 

Coat, Enlisted Summer Undress c. 1904-1912.jpg

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A bit tangent but NCHS has been brought up before here in the medic helmet thread as a “respectable collector or 50 years” from whom a seller purchased some painted M1s(specifically an 88th I’d helmet) to resell. With a little research it is seen that NCHS is a vendor of many reproduction patches and painted helmets by their own site’s admission. They appear to offer items that are, by description, indistinguishable from originals. While this proprietor/collector has a good reputation, according to comments on this forum, I would caution anyone who deals with them or anyone selling goods sourced from them to research the items for authenticity.  

Dave

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I agree with the Author regarding this tunic.  I have a number of true Philippine made EM tunics from this period in my collection.  The color I have no issue with as I have examples on pea green as I call it and Khaki.  Though the fabric is correct, this uniform fits the tropical jackets used in Hawaii and other tropical zones the Army served in, but NOT the Philippines.  There is a slight variance in the design that does not appear in the last two uniforms being sold out of this collection that are present in ever other Philippine period uniform I have seen or owned in the last 30 plus years.

 

ASMIC Member #3410

OMSA Member #6464

 

Buying insignia, medals, patches and other related materials associated with the Philippine Constabulary; Philippine Scouts; Philippine Army; Philippine Aviation pre-1942 as well as the Philippine Department and Philippine Division.

 

Seeking a photo or drawing of Philippine Constabulary Flags pre-1935.

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