Wilder's Brigade Mounted Infantry

                Living History Society

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Please see Vendor List for Vendors that provide acceptable equipment listed here.


Period Saddle This can be a McClellan, Grimsley, Hope etc.  Also, civilian style saddles would not be out of line.
Girth If using a military saddle, the girth should be made of the correct blue worsted wool material with iron hardware.
Blanket roll straps Straps that attach to military style saddles to keep items secured to the saddle, i.e. blanket roll. Strap buckles should be brass or iron - no chrome or nickel plated stuff!
Saddle Blanket This can be the standard cavalry blanket, erroneously referred to as the dragoon blanket. You could also use a standard military issue sleeping blanket or civilian blanket. No olive drab, modern pads or "indian" style blankets will be allowed.
Period Bit and Bridle Standard enlisted issue or civilian style. Bits should be of civilian or military issue - no modern chrome bits. Note - if using military style bridle, every effort should be made to acquire the correct reins. These reins would be sewn on to the bit, rather than buckled on. Buckle on reins were for officer use.
Period Halter and lead strap Military issue or civilian style halter and lead strap. Brass or iron hardware only. No chrome or nickel plated stuff. Certainly no modern halters.
Saddle Bags Should be an appropriate military or civilian style. If military they should be enlisted style. In addition, or in lieu of saddle bags, one could use their knapsack slung behind the cantle of the saddle.
Period rifle or carbine Depending on the time period, a 3-band musket (Enfield, Austrian, Springfield) would be appropriate.  Of course the Spencer Rifle (and carbine to some extent later on) would be appropriate.
Feed Bag Civilian or military style feed bag is recommended. Note - the correct military issue feed bag should have a flat bottom as opposed to the rounded bottom found on some feed bags. Feed bag can double as a watering bucket.
Carbine Socket Military style carbine socket. This is optional depending on how you carry your gun. The socket may be placed on the D ring on the girth for carbines or on the stirrup for rifles. It is used to keep the rifle from banging around when riding.
Crupper Piece of tack that runs from the back of the saddle to the dock and under the tail of the horse. Used to keep the saddle from slipping forward. Should only be used if needed. Military and civilian patters are acceptable. No chrome or nickel plated hardware.
Surcingle Your "security blanket." Piece of tack that acts as a second girth by running around the saddle and horse. Should be made of the correct worsted blue wool. Iron hardware only.
Breast strap Piece of tack that attaches to the front of the saddle and loops around the front of the horses chest. This acts to keep the saddle from slipping backward. This was not an issue item and should only be used if needed. If needed they would have been privately purchased. Please note that a Surcingle could have and was improvised to act as a breast collar by some soldiers. As was musket slings, etc.
Period Hoof Pick This is optional if somebody in your mess already has one.
Period Brush This is optional if somebody in your mess already has one.
Link Strap Piece of tack that hooked horses together at the halter. Link strap with period buckle or clip is necessary.
Picket Pin and Rope Large iron pin with about 30 feet of rope that was staked into the ground. Used to graze horses. Can double as a picket line.
Wool Blanket Very recommended item. Can be civilian or military issue. No modern blankets or olive drap army blankets. Please avoid the blankets that most sutlers sell as well. They tend to be of polyester mix.
Gum Blanket Recommended item. Military style vulcanized ground cloth. Used to keep you dry or your items dry!
Uniform Jacket (Western Federal) Prefer sack coat (Fatigue Blouse) or untrimmed mounted services jacket.
Suspenders Period suspenders. No chrome buckle, modern elastic, etc.
Trousers Federal Federal Mounted Infantry or Infantry pattern.
Period Boots or Brogans Military or Civilian style. Boots or brogans are equally as accurate. No modern work boots, tennis shoes, East German army boots, etc.
Period Slouch Hat Military or Civilian style. Hardee hat (preferred) or the popular slouch hats of the period. No cowboy hats! - No hat brass or hat cords. Hat should be bought a little small.  If it fits tightly then this will avoid the temptation to use chin/stampede strings. The usuage of chin/stampede strings is not accurate for the Mounted Civil War trooper.
Period Shirt Military or Civilian style. Civilian homespun is good. No modern shirts.
Canteen Federal or Confederate style. Linen or leather sling. Brown jeanswool cover being the most prevalent.
Waist Belt Appropriate enlisted issue (if you are of that persuasion). Should hang right at the belly button.
Carbine or Rifle Cartridge Box Holds your rounds. Period pattern is required.
Haversack Holds your groceries! Standard enlisted haversack usually constructed from material painted to resist moisture.
Knapsack Holds everything else - including extra shirt, drawer, food and ammo. This is the early military backpack. Made of painted cloth or canvas.
Carbine Strap and Sling Belt that loops around your shoulders with a clip at the end. Allows ride to carry gun by the side when riding. May be needed depending on weapon carried and how it is carried.
Shelter Half Early style military tent. Usually made of lightweight cotton or canvas. Avoid thick halves or ones with large brass grommets. One was carried by each soldier and two soldiers would "bunk-up" to make a small tent.
Drawers and Socks Military or Civilian style. Civilian homespun is good. Period socks and drawers only!  No tube socks or gray rag socks.
Housewife Small sewing kit that soldiers used to repair their garments. Usually made by loved ones at home or sanitary commissions.
Flatwear/Cup/Pan The important gear! This includes some kind of knife, fork and spoon or combo set. A cup and some kind of plate or frying pan. Many of us use canteen halves as a frying pan and plate. Avoid stainless steel items.