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Date > 1800 > 1870-1879

Subject > Armed Forces > Military Life

Resource Type > Image

Officer cadet, Royal Military College of Canada, 1954

Type: Image

Except for a few details, the full dress uniform of officer cadets at the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario, remained essentially the same since the college was founded in 1874. As shown in this 1954 photo, only the shakos and pith helmets worn on parade by first-class officer-cadets disappeared, replaced by pill-box caps. (Canadian Department of National Defence, ZK-2049)

Site: National Defence

Private, Canadian Volunteer Militia, 1863-1870

Type: Image

This volunteer wears the full dress uniform authorized for the Canadian Volunteer Militia in 1863. Few units would have worn the shako shown in this image, substituting the inexpensive (and far more comfortable) forage cap. The style is generally similar to that worn by British regular infantry, with the white-metal buttons and badges commonly used by militia units within the British empire. Reconstruction by Ron Volstad. (Canadian Department of National Defence)

Site: National Defence

Royal Military College cadet, 1876

Type: Image

This was the uniform of a Royal Military College cadet at the time of the opening of the college in 1876. The graduates of RMC enlisted in both the Permanent and Volunteer Militia, as well as the North-West Mounted Police. Print after Henri Julien in the 'Canadian Illustrated News' (Montreal), 17 June 1876.

Site: National Defence

Aspects of a summer training camp for volunteer militia units, 1875

Type: Image

Each summer, a part of the Canadian Militia was gathered to spend 12 days at a training camp. The camps were supposed to supplement regular drills at each unit's home base. Lack of money meant that regiments outside the cities could go for long periods without attending a camp. This 1875 illustration shows scenes taken from one such camp.

Site: National Defence

Rifleman, Canadian Volunteer Militia, 1863-1870

Type: Image

Some units of the Canadian Volunteer Militia emulated the British rifle regiments, wearing a similar dark green uniform with bronze buttons and badges. Although all of the Volunteer units were armed with rifled muskets by the 1860s, the prestige and spirit of the rifle regiments remained an attraction to new recruits. This volunteer wears the full dress uniform authorized between 1863 and 1870. He carries the shorter 'two-band' pattern of 1853 model Enfield rifled musket issued to rifle and light infantry units. Reconstruction by Ron Volstad. (Canadian Department of National Defence)

Site: National Defence

Canadian Illustrated News - Hospital Ward in the Palace at Versailles (The War)

Type: Image

Drawing of a hospital room in the Palace at Versailles during the Franco-Prussian War.

Site: Library and Archives Canada

Infantry tunic, Canadian Volunteer Militia, 1871-1876

Type: Image

The full dress tunic was the only uniform coat issued to Canadian volunteers during the 19th century. The style is essentially similar to a British tunic, although by 1870s the British army was starting to develop special campaign uniforms. This surviving coat in the collection of the Canadian War Museum has the so-called 'chevron' cuff. This pattern of coat was official issue 1871-1876. (Canadian War Museum)

Site: National Defence

Officer and gunners, Royal Regiment of Artillery, 1889

Type: Image

Royal Artillery detachments continued to be posted in Halifax until 1905 to serve the large coast defence guns which protected the naval base.

Site: National Defence

Private's tunic, Canadian Volunteer Militia, 1863 - 1870

Type: Image

This tunic is the standard pattern adopted in 1863 for the Canadian Volunteer Militia. It is similar to the tunic of a British regular infantryman of the era, but instead of straight cuffs with cuff flaps it has pointed cuffs decorated with an 'Austrian knot' in white piping. Note as well the white loop on the shoulder in place of the more usual shoulder strap. The facings are dark blue, a distinction normally reserved for 'royal' regiments but adopted wholesale by the Canadians. This example dates from 1863-1870, but the general style was worn by the militia for the remainder of the 19th century. (Canadian War Museum)

Site: National Defence

'Cat of nine tails' whip

Type: Image

The ‘cat of nine tails’ was a whip used to flog soldiers. This one was used in the British 83rd Regiment of Foot. The length of the wooden stick was 43cm (1' 5"), its tails 53cm (1' 9"), and it weighed 141,75 g. (5 ounces). (Library of the Canadian Department of National Defence)

Site: National Defence