The Pre-Feldgrau Uniform

One of the most distinctive aspects of German cavalry were their uniforms. Up until 1907, uniforms were colorful and varied with styles and colors varying by the regiment type. In the German Army, cavalry consisted of several types: dragoons, Uhlans, hussars, and Kuirassiers, all wearing distinctive but different uniforms. In the Bavarian service, things were even more varied with Schwere-Reiters, Uhlans, and of course, Chevaulegers.

Up until 1907, the basic Chevauleger uniform consisted of dark green (hunter green) tunic and breeches trimmed in carmine, which was the regimental facing color. The buttons were all nickle (or white). This uniform lingered on as a dress uniform of sorts as the army transitioned to a more functional feldgrau-colored uniform for everyday use. Below are some illustrations that should help clarify things.

Prewar Gruen Uniform

Above is an illustration of the basic uniform along with the picklehaube and the mutze. The buttons were nickle (or “white”) with were plain.

Taffel1

Uniform_kgl_bayer_chevauleger

Above are some more illustrations. The bottom illustration compares three Chevauleger regiments’ facing colors.

ChevEnlisted_1900 Chevy_Soldat1 Pre-Feldgrau1

Above are three more illustrations. The middle illustration is of an officer. Note that the belt and cartridge box belt were in white buff. The final illustration above depicts a Chevauleger in parade order, The plume on the picklehaube was used for formal occasions. The tunic on this soldat is a bit too large, especially in the sleeves.

Below are some views of the actual uniform. This particular uniform’s facing colors and buttons were for the 1 Chevauleger. The only difference between the 1 and 2 Chevauleger was the color of the buttons (brass for the 1 Chevaulger, nickle for the 2 Chevauelger), the facing color was identical for both regiment.

Tunic1

Full view of the tunic. Note that the buttons were plain.

Tunic2

Close-Up of the collar. The buttons on the shoulder boards had the squadron number, in the case the 5th.

Group1

Ensemble of Feldmütze, Picklehaube, and tunic or Ulanka.

The above is somewhat simplistic but should at least give a starting point for further inquiry. Horrido!

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