Index
 
1879 Uniform Regulations

As transcribed by By J. David Perkins

Admiralty, 7 May 1879

As promulgated in the 20 March 1888 edition of the Navy List.

Note 1 : It is these Regulations that first introduce the "fore and aft" rig for CPOs and a variety of outfits for the men that in the 1890 Uniform Regulations become the Class I, II and III kit.

Note 2 : The only significant difference between this edition of the 1879 Uniform Regulations and those actually published in the year of issue are some amendments further defining the items of dress and how they are to be worn. There was very little change in the intervening nine years.

Ship’s Company

XLVI.— Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class — Chief Stoker

Note : Chief Petty Officers included in this group are Chief Gunner's Mate, Chief Boatswain's Mate, Chief Captain of the Forecastle, Admiral's Cox'n, Chief Quartermaster, Chief Yeoman of Signals.

Dress

Long Jacket— Blue cloth, double breasted, with four gilt uniform buttons on each side; three buttons only to show on each side of the jacket, and there is to be only one button hole in collar flap, the fourth button being under the collar flap; stand and fall collar; with pocket flaps; length from lower part of collar to bottom edge twenty-eight to thirty inches depending on the height of the wearer.

Waistcoat— Blue cloth, or white, single breasted, with six gilt buttons.

Trowsers— Made with flies, plain blue cloth or white when ordered.

Cap—Blue cloth, eight inches in diameter, black leather peak, and black mohair band, surmounted by crown and anchor device embroidered in gold and silver

Shirt—White

Necktie—Black

Buttons—Same as Gunner (plain Naval Officer’s pattern, gilt with crown, anchor and cable device)

Duck or White Drill Frocks—To be made with collar and wristband of blue jean, the collar having a border of three rows of three-sixteenths of an inch white tape, one-eighths of an inch apart, and the wristbands to be peaked with two rows of white tape one-eighth of an inch apart along the upper margin, and one on the lower, with one white metal dead-eye button at each of the wrists.

Working Dress

Long Jacket— Blue serge or duck with gilt buttons, as in dress except that the duck jacket is to be single breasted, and is to show four buttons and there is to be no button hole in the collar flap.

Trowsers— Blue cloth or duck as in dress.

Shirt— Blue check

XLVII — Master-at-Arms

Dress

Coat—Blue frock, single breasted, with fall down collar, with four uniform gilt buttons on the front at equal distances, and three on the sleeves.

Waistcoat—Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class

Trowsers— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class

Shirt— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class

Necktie— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class

Cap— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class except that the device is to be in gold.

Sword and Belt—Same as Gunner (Warrant Officer pattern, sword with plain guard and black grippe)

Buttons—Same as Gunner (plain Naval Officer pattern, gilt with crown, anchor and cable)

Working Dress

Long Jacket Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class but with three buttons on the cuff.

Trowsers—Same as in dress.

Waistcoat— Same as in dress.

Necktie— Same as in dress.

Cap— Same as in dress.

Buttons— Same as in dress.

Shirt— Blue check.

XLVIII — Head Schoolmaster

Dress

Coat— Same as morning dress of Carpenter. (Blue, double-breasted, cloth frock coat with padded turn-down collar and eight buttons each side, round cuffs, three buttons on the cuffs).

Waistcoat— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class

Trowsers— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class

Shirt— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class

Necktie— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class

Buttons—Same as Gunner

No sword belt.

Undress and Morning Dress

Same as dress

XLIX— Naval Schoolmaster — Writer, Old style — Writer of 1st Class — Ship’s Steward — Chief Sick Berth Steward

Dress

Same as Master-at-Arms omitting the three buttons on each sleeve cuff; no sword or belt

Working Dress

Same as Master-at-Arms omitting the three buttons on each sleeve cuff.

L— Chief Engine Room Artificer — Chief Torpedo Artificer

Dress

Long Jacket— Same as the Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class with gilt uniform buttons, three buttons on each cuff.

Waistcoat—Same as Master-at-Arms

Trowsers— Same as Master-at-Arms

Cap— Same as Master-at-Arms

Necktie— Same as Master-at-Arms

Shirt— Same as Master-at-Arms

Buttons— Same as Master-at-Arms

Working and Coaling Dress

Same as Chief Petty Officer of the Seaman Class except device on cap and buttons on cuffs, which are to be same as dress.

LI — Engine Room Artificer

Dress

Same as the Chief Engine Room Artificer, except that the buttons on the cuffs are to be omitted.

Working Dress

Same as the Chief Engine Room Artificer, except that the buttons on the cuffs are to be omitted.

LII — Skilled Chief Carpenter’s Mate — Chief Carpenter’s Mate — Ship’s Cook (Old System) — Ship’s Cook 1st Class (New System).

Dress

Same as the Chief Petty Officer Seaman Class except that the device on the cap is to be in gold.

LIII — Skilled Carpenter’s Mate — Skilled Shipwright

Dress

Same as Skilled Chief Carpenter’s Mate, except that the buttons are to be of horn and no device on cap.

Working Dress

Same as Skilled Chief Carpenter’s Mate, except uniform buttons to be of horn and no device on cap.

LIV — Ship’s Corporal, 1st & 2nd Class — Sick Berth Stewards & Attendants — Assistant Sick Berth Attendants — Ship’s Steward Assistant — Writer 3rd Class — Pupil Teacher — Boy Writer — Ship’s Cook 2nd Class

Dress

Same as Naval Schoolmaster with the following exception: Instead of the long jacket, a round, blue, navy cloth double-breasted jacket: six horn uniform buttons on jacket and waistcoat, and no device on the cap.

Working Dress

Same as Naval Schoolmaster except that the jacket is to be round, and the buttons and cap, which are to be as undress

LV — Writer 2nd Class

Dress

Same as Ship’s Corporal, except the buttons of the jacket and waistcoat which are to be same as Writer of the 1st Class (gilt).

Working Dress

The buttons to be gilt uniform instead of horn.

LVI — Officer’s Servant Or Domestic — Marine Servant

Dress

Same as Ship’s Corporal, except that the jacket is to be single breasted. Buttons to be of horn. Drill may be worn in warm climates.

Working Dress

Same as in dress.

LVII — Bandsman — Bandsman 2nd Class — Band Boy

Dress

Tunic— of dark blue cloth with a white collar braided in white worsted cord on the back and front and on the cuffs.

Trowsers—Dark blue cloth having two lines of narrow white braid, one inch apart, down the leg on the outside.

Cap—Dark blue cloth, flat, and without a peak, with a band of black braid one and a half inches deep, edged with white cord. White ornament on top, and chin strap.

Summer Dress—When the Ship’s Company is in white, a white drill or duck tunic, similar to that worn by the Marines, with uniform horn buttons, is to be worn with white duck trowsers.

Working Suit

Plain blue serge tunic with white collar and uniform horn buttons.

Cap— As in dress.

LVIII — Chief Bandmaster — Bandmaster

Dress

Tunic— Blue cloth, same as that of Bandsman, but without white collar, and trimmed with black braid and cord.

Trowsers— Same as Bandsman, but with silver lace instead of braid.

Cap—Same as Bandsman, but trimmed with silver lace and silver ornament on top.

Summer Dress—>Same as bandsman, but with braid on the cuffs and uniform gilt buttons.

Working Suit

Same as Bandsman, but with braid on the cuffs and uniform gilt buttons.

LIX — Petty Officer Of The 1st or 2nd Class — Seaman — Artificer—boy

Including all ratings not otherwise specially provided for.

Dress

Round Jacket— Of Navy blue cloth, double breasted, with stand and fall collar; sleeves sufficiently large to go over duck or serge frock; to reach the hip; one inside pocket on the left side; with an opening at the cuffs on the seam with two small black buttons; and seven black horn crown and anchor buttons, seven tenths of an inch in diameter.

Blue Trowsers— Of Navy blue cloth, of the ordinary Navy pattern, fitting tight at the waist band, with two pockets and a broad flap, and with stained bone buttons. To be tied at the back with black silk ribbon.

White Trowsers— Of duck, of the same pattern, with white metal dead-eye buttons. To be tied at the back with white tape.

White Frock—To be made of drill, with collar and wrist bands of blue jean, the collar having a border of three rows of three-sixteenths of an inch white tape, one-eighths of an inch apart, and the wristbands to be peaked with two rows of white tape one-eighth of an inch apart along the upper margin, and one on the lower, with one white metal dead-eye button at each of the wrists.

Seaman’s Collar to White Frock—Seaman’s collar to the White frock to be to the dimensions herein shown:

Blue Frock—To be made of serge, of the same pattern, except the blue jean collar and wristbands. No knife pocket. Dimensions to be the same as for white frock.

Note : The blue frock had plain blue wristbands and a blue serge collar that was without any decoration

Shirt—Check, with blue collar. To be worn only under the blue frock.

Jumpers— Of blue serge or white duck; to extend from two to three inches below the hip; with a knife pocket on the left breast. White jumpers to be bound round the bottoms and ends of sleeves with blue jean half an inch wide. Collars to be same pattern as those of the frocks. Serge jumpers to be of same dimensions as for the white frock.

Serge Trowsers— To be tied at the back with blue tape, as issued with serge.

Flannels— To be cut square across the breast and close up to the neck, so as to afford protection to the chest; with a narrow half inch blue binding round the neck; sleeves optional.

Hat— To be made of sennet, with oval crown, three inches high; brim to be straight, three and a half inches wide, and inclined upwards to the extent of one inch, with a hat ribbon bearing the ship’s name.

A chin stay is to be attached to the hat.

On occasions of ceremony, when hats are ordered to be worn, the white hat is to be the uniform throughout the year, the black hat having been abolished.

Cap— To be worn at night, and at sea when ordered.

The cap to be made round of No. 1 (blue) cloth, and partially stiffened across the crown, similar in shape to that worn by Naval Officers, without the peak. Diameter across the crown; for men ten inches; for boys nine inches; with a ribbon bearing the ship’s name.

A chin stay to be attached to the hat.

White Cap Covers— May be worn in warm climates subject to the approval of the Commander-in-Chief, when men are dressed in white frocks and trowsers, excepting when straw hats are worn.

Woollen Comforter— Dark blue.

Working Suit

Jumper— Of duck, without the blue collar or binding, with a knife pocket.

Trowsers— Of duck.

Night Suit

NOTE—White frocks and jumpers re to have a distinguishing watch stripe of blue jean upon the outer part of one sleeve, at the junction of the sleeve and body; and blue frocks and jumpers are to have a similar stripe of red braid. Men in the starboard watch are to wear the stripe on the right arm and those in the port watch on the left arm.

General Notes
Ship’s Company
Marks of Distinction

Petty Officers and Leading Seamen

18.   All Chief and other Petty Officers and Leading Seamen are to wear on the upper part of the left sleeve of their long or round jackets the following marks of distinction embroidered in Gold

Chief Petty Officers Crown and anchor, encircled with laurel
First Class Petty Officer Crown and cross anchors
Second Class Petty Officer Crown and anchor
Leading Seaman, Skilled Shipwrights and Shipwrights The anchor

On the blue frock and blue jumper and on the pea jacket these badges are to be worked in red, and in blue upon the white jackets, frocks and jumpers.

Gunnery and Torpedo

19.   Gunnery Instructor— A Whitehead torpedo crossed diagonally by a Gun, encircled with Oak leaves, and surmounted by a Star and Crown. The Gun showing in front of the Torpedo.

Torpedo Instructor—The same as Gunnery Instructor, with the exception that the Torpedo is to be shown in front of the Gun.

Leading Torpedo Man—The same as Torpedo Instructor with the exception of there being no Oak leaves.

Seaman Gunner Torpedo Man 1st Class— Whitehead torpedo crossed diagonally by a Gun, surmounted by a Crown. The Gun showing in front of the Torpedo.

Seaman Gunner Torpedo Man 2nd Class— The same as for 1st Class with the exception of a star being substituted for the Crown.

Seaman Gunner Torpedo Man 3rd Class—The same as for Second Class but without the star.

On blue cloth jackets the badge will be worked in gold; on blue serge in scarlet worsted; and on white drill in blue worsted.

Acting Seaman Gunner Torpedo Man— The same as for Seaman Gunner Torpedo Man 3rd Class.

Sick berth Staff

19a   All classes of the Sick Berth Staff are to wear the Geneva Cross on the right arm, above the elbow.

Badges
Good Conduct

20.   Good Conduct badges are to be worn on the arm below the marks of distinction, as directed by the Queen’s Regulations and Admiralty Instructions.

21.   The following are, however, not to wear any marks of distinction or badges on their frock coats or their long or round jackets, as the case may be:

Master-at-Arms
Head and Naval Schoolmaster
Ship’s Steward
Chief bandmaster, and all Writers
Chief Engine Room Artificers
Engine Room Artificers
Chief Carpenter’s Mates (skilled)

Pea Jacket

22.   Pea Jacket—May be worn by all Men and Boys at their option; to be of flushing with seven buttons one inch and one third in diameter, on each side, gilt uniform, black horn uniform or plain silk, as in dress. Buttons on the cuff as in dress, with the marks of distinction and good conduct badges to which the wearer is entitled worked in red worsted as above directed in Notes 18 to 21.

© Dave Perkins

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