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U.S. History/confederate uniform


Michael, i  have attached a picture that i would like you to look at. It is said to be of a Confederate Texas Calvary soldier of the Madison's 3rd cavalry "arizona brigade". Can you give your opinion as to that being correct.

Hi Reese,

I'm afraid I cannot give you a definitive answer on this one.  One of the problems with any uniforms prior to WWI is that uniforms were not "uniform."  That is, not everyone wore the same thing, even within a particular unit.  This is particularly true for State regiments and for cavalry, where cavalrymen, who tended to be wealthier, often had their own uniforms designed for them by a private tailor or family member.  Also, most soldiers did not wear clear insignia identifying their units.

Here is another picture of a soldier identified as being from the Arizona Brigade:

Here is a picture of two officers identified as being from the Arizona Brigade.

As you can see, the uniforms are quite different from one another as well as from yours.  But this is not unusual in a State Cavalry unit.

This uniform clearly has a Mexican influence to it, which would be quite common in regiments from the Southwest.  The fact that the soldier is wearing a neck tie is very unusual for this period.  Most uniforms either have a jacket that buttons all the way to the neck, or if open like this one the soldier is usually wearing a string tie or bow tie.  This suggests a European influence, where neck ties were just coming into fashion around 1860.  Again, France was closely tied to Mexico during this period, so this fashion trend could have come from there.  

I hope this helps!
- Mike  

U.S. History

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Michael Troy


I can answer just about any question on early American History. My specialties are the American Revolution through the Civil War/Reconstruction. I also have greater expertise in matters relating to military, political or legal history.


I have lectured at George Washington University regarding the Civil War, as well as several elementary school Civil War demonstrations. I was also a member of a Civil War reenactment group for about 10 years.


J.D. University of Michigan B.A. George Washington University

Awards and Honors
Truman Scholar

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