Original Civil War Officer’s Vest
Original Civil War Officer’s Vest – This vest is a superior example of a now and increasingly difficult staple element of most Civil War officer’s uniforms. Per the fashion dictates of the mid-19th century, gentleman usually wore vests, and Civil War officers, North and South, were no exception to these fashionable precepts. This vest is constructed, as are fine Union officer’s frock coats, of excellent, British wool broadcloth, dyed to a deep, dark indigo blue. Military vests were not dictated by regulation in either army, yet most period soldier worn vests exhibit the following characteristics: stand-up collar (some were layover); nine military, cuff size buttons down the front; three front pockets (in a one over one configuration on one side of the vest, with a single pocket on the opposite side); padded breast areas; linen or fine cotton interior lining; brown polished cotton pocket linings; brown polished cotton or silk back with japanned or brass size adjuster buckle; combination of machine and hand stitching; hand whipped button holes. Needless to say, this vest exhibits all of the aforementioned characteristics. The buttons are New York Staff cuffs and are all original sews. The blue wool front and the interior lining are in superb condition; there are some weak areas and slight tears in the upper back of the vest, but these are not visible when displayed beneath a frock coat or on a form. We used to find these Civil War military vests with some regularity, they have all but evaporated, and this one is a wonderful display example.