Garibaldi jacket : Victorian Miltary Forces

Place Oceania: Australia, Victoria
Accession Number REL/18398.001
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Uniform
Physical description Brass, Cotton, Silver bullion braid, Silver lace, Silver nickel, Superfine wool, Wool
Maker Unknown
Date made c 1860s
Conflict Australian Colonial Forces, 1854-1900

Scarlet superfine Garibaldi jacket with sloping scarlet stand collar and plain cuffs. Upper edge of collar trimmed with round silver bullion cord and lower edge with silver Russia braid. Twisted round silver cord shoulder straps loop over a silver nickel ball button at the neck edge which is also part of the plastron. Wide sleeves each have a round silver bullion cord Austrian knot at the cuff. On the left sleeve above the knot, there an embroidered silver and gold bullion crossed swords badge, blades pointing downwards, on a reddish brown wool ground. Above the knot on the right sleeve are four chevrons of upward pointing silver lace to denote the rank of troop sergeant major; the lowest row of lace is of a different pattern. The jacket has a plastron front, trimmed with silver Russia braid and fastened on the right with seven silver nickel ball buttons. Seven more of the same buttons decorate the corresponding left half of the plastron. The centre front of the plastron is decorated with two rows of round silver cord, one of the rows continues down the left front opening. Lower edge of jacket is gathered into a narrow waistband fastened with a ferrous metal button in front. There are two brass belt hooks at the back. Plastron, fronts, collar and cuffs are lined with red wool and cotton twill mixture with concealed pocket inside the left breast lined with brown cotton drill. Brass hook and eye at lining below plastron and ferrous hook and eye at neck edge. Jacket is completely hand sewn. with seams in backstitch.

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History / Summary

Garibaldi jacket of the style worn by cavalry units, and sometimes by artillery, from the early 1860s in Victoria. Also referred to as a Garibaldi 'shirt' or 'jumper', it was an undress jacket often worn in the field, by staff officers as well as other ranks. Garibaldi jackets are usually seen with either a single or double row of buttons at the front rather than with the plastron front. The crossed swords badge on the left sleeve was awarded for skill in swordsmanship, but may not be original to the jacket. The rank of troop sergeant major denoted by four chevrons only appears in the Queen's regulations of 1859.