Civil War Tintype
Soldier with Hardee Hat
Rare Civil War tintype, tinted standing soldier, hardee hat, long coat. Cased and brass matted standing soldier with pipe in mouth and letter in hand with hardee hat and long grey confederate coat, tinted image. 3.25"x2.75". Leather Case cover is separated but complete.
The Hardee hat, also known as the Model 1858 Dress Hat and sometimes nicknamed the "Jeff Davis", was the regulation dress hat for enlisted men in the U.S. Army during the American Civil War. However, most soldiers found the black felt hat to be too hot and heavy and shunned its use, preferring a kepi or slouch hat. The most prominent wearers of the Hardee hat were the soldiers of the Union "Iron Brigade", also known as the Black-Hat Boys.
The hat apparently was named after William J. Hardee, a career officer in the U.S. Army from 1838 until resigning his commission on January 31, 1861. Hardee was Commandant of Cadets at West Point from 1856 to 1860. He was lieutenant colonel of the 1st U.S. Cavalry until just before the war. In 1855, he published Rifle and Light Infantry Tactics for the Exercise and Manoeuvres of Troops When Acting as Light Infantry or Riflemen, popularly known as Hardee's Tactics, which became the best-known drill manual of both sides of the Civil War. He joined the Confederate States Army in March 1861 and eventually became a lieutenant general and corps commander.
U.S. Army regulations specified that the hat should be adorned with a brass hat device and a wool hat cord denoting the branch of service of the wearer: blue for infantry, red for artillery, yellow for cavalry. The brim was to be pinned up on the right side for the cavalryman, on the left for foot soldiers.