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"French Hussars in 1859" Topic

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Volleyfire22 Aug 2020 7:52 a.m. PST

I'm getting confused here as I can't seem to find any definite source for the uniform of the French Hussars in 1859. Some pictures on the internet show them wearing the busby and lace on their jackets, with jackets which are in regt colours, whilst others show kepis and a light blue jacket although I thought kepis and the common jacket colour didn't come in until the FPW. Can anyone throw any light on this please?

Perris070722 Aug 2020 9:14 a.m. PST

Dug up my resource book: Campaign Booklet #8, The Second Italian War of Independence 1859, by Luigi Casali. Casali states that the French Hussar regiments (2nd, 5th, 6th,7th, and 8th) took the field wearing a shako in the regiment's distinctive color – except for the 7th which was dark green. Pom pon colors were by squadron as follows: 1st= Deep blue, 2nd= Crimson, 3rd= Geeen, 4th= Light blue, 5th= Light blue, 6th= Orange. He further states that the lace on top the shako matched button color. He then states that in the field on campaign the shako was covered in a black waterproof cloth. He also states that each regiment (except the 8th!) had matching dolmans, pelisses. Trousers matched collar and cuff color. As follows: Dolman and pelisse; trousers, cuff and collar; buttons, cord, and lace; trouser piping.
2nd = Deep brown; light blue; white; deep brown
5th = Deep blue; deep red; white; deep blue
6th = Light green; deep red; white; light green
7th = Light green; light green; yellow; light green
8th = Light blue/white; white; Gold-yellow; light blue

Shabraque was same color as the dolman. Sashes were crimson and white for the 2nd, 5th, and 6th regiments while the 7th and 8th had crimson and yellow sash. Sabretache was black leather with a golden eagle plate. All belting was white with a black leather cartridge box. Scabbard was steel. He says trumpeters wore the same uniform with the addition of red, blue, and white around the collars and on the cuffs. Officers also wore the same with the addition of gold or silver piping and lace according to the button color of their regiments. Rank indicated by chevrons on their sleeves. Also the officers had black shoulder belts with either gold or silver metal again according to regimental button color.

Hope this helps.

Volleyfire22 Aug 2020 10:58 a.m. PST

Wow! Many Thanks for such a detailed answer! Now that contradicts everything I've seen so far. I'm using Baccus figures and their Hussars are ok as Chasseurs D'Afrique I think since they are in kepi but bear no resemblance to what you've written above.

Perris070722 Aug 2020 7:16 p.m. PST

Also I would add that the shakoes that he illustrates on the Hussars are not like Napoleonic shakoes that are wider at the top. These are tapered in as they go up and are smaller circumference at the top than at the bottom. Like the Austrian shakos of the period.
see here:


Volleyfire23 Aug 2020 12:16 a.m. PST

Hmmm, thanks. Interesting. So in 6mm Austrian Hussars figures in shako would actually be a better representation.

Perris070723 Aug 2020 8:19 a.m. PST

I would say yes. You probably won't need to worry about lace and buttons in 6mm…

Volleyfire25 Aug 2020 1:30 a.m. PST

No I definitely don't worry about buttons in 6mm lol.

Volleyfire25 Aug 2020 1:38 a.m. PST

One other thing I'm confused about. I thought all ranks apart from officers had red epaulettes, but I see pictures of drummers with blue ones, and fusiliers with green ones. Were grenadiers the only ones with red epaulettes and what ratio were they to fusiliers in companies?If so I need to repaint an awful lot of epaulettes.

Decebalus26 Aug 2020 2:34 a.m. PST

Interesting picture of the 2nd hussars at Solferino. You can see the hussars with shako, but also some men with kepi: one in blue uniform (a general?), one officer with the brown of the hussars and a men with a banner.


Volleyfire26 Aug 2020 3:10 a.m. PST

I would think the ones in dark blue are officers, note the white gloves, gold braid on the kepi and gold epaulettes. I'm wondering who the one in the centre with the white belt and bearskin is though.

Volleyfire26 Aug 2020 4:46 a.m. PST

I note that the Jagers are in grey, when I thought they too were still in white in 1859 like the line infantry. There's some very contradictory stuff in this period what with uniform changes being made at that time.

Volleyfire26 Aug 2020 5:03 a.m. PST

And then there is this one depicting the 5th Hussars with what appears to be red shakos (assuming they are shakos) The trouser piping isn't blue though, and wouldn't the shakos be blue?

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