So you want to join his excellency, General George Washington, and his Continental troops as they fight the tyrannical British? Once you've signed your name on the drumhead, there are a few items you will need to be effective on the battlefield. Our unit is growing, and our quartermaster has only a small repository of clothing, accoutrements or equipment to loan until you get your own uniform and accoutrements together (much like the real army experienced throughout the Revolution). Here is a general laundry list of items you will need to successfully engage the enemy.
Please bear in mind that you won't need to rush out and get all these things at once, as some members of our unit have many years under their belts and still don't have all their 'stuff'. You can visit the web sites on our Links page to get an idea of what's available on the market. Items considered essential to fall out and field with the unit will be marked as such.
On the left is a plate drawing of a private from the 11th Pennsylvania Regiment, extracted from Uniforms of the American Revolution (Plate 124), by John Mollo, 1975. The Pennsylvania Evening Post of April 22, 1777 mentioned that a deserter had "... A new suit of regimentals, consisting of a light infantry cap, blue coat with scarlet cape and cuffs, white woolen waistcoat, new buckskin breeches."
CLICK HERE to see our documented deserter
reports from various newspapers.
- Click on the underlined text to see a picture of the item -
- A new window will be opened, close it to return -
CLICK HERE to visit the Index to Uniforms of the American Revolution to get an idea of what
various uniforms were seen on the battlefields (brought to you by the Sons of the Revolution).
Documented Uniforms of the 11th Pennsylvania Regiment (Chart by Justin)
(Requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)
Regimental Overcoat - The heavy wool coat. We have two variations documented for the unit: One is dark green with white facings and the other is blue with red facings [you will need approximately 3 1/2 to 4 yards green/blue and 1 yard white/red, and 2 yards lining (one for body, one for sleeves) - use white or natural linen)]
Coat - Also a heavy wool coat. Civilian frock coat or short coat in either blue, brown, or light brown
Hunting Frock / Hunting Shirt - For when it's too hot for the Regimental
Cocked Hat - (Essential) The signature hat of the Continental Soldier
Waistcoat - (Essential) The vest you wear under the coat / frock. Suggested colors are white or "sky blue"
Shirt - (Essential) White cotton to keep you comfortable
Stock - (Essential) 18th century neck tie
Breeches - (Essential) Knee length pants. Suggested color: buckskin or buckskin breeches.
Stockings - (Essential) Covers the legs between the shoes and breeches. Remember that they need to be held up by leather garters (just below the knees). Suggested colors are white or blue
Half Gaiters - Protects the lower legs in heavy brush
Shoes - (Essential) 18th century buckled
Weaponry / Accoutrements:
Flintlock Musket/Rifle - (Essential) This would undoubtedly be one of your most expensive acquisitions, but necessary if you are going into battle. The British Brown Bess and the French Charleville are the two most popular models of muskets, but any model musket prior to 1763 would be acceptable. For you militia fans, there is a large variety of rifles out there, too. CLICK HERE to read more about the history of the Brown Bess. The PEDERSOLI company is known to make the Cadillac of recreation firearms.
Bayonet - For when you run out of powder ... run 'em through
Tomahawk - Cuts through wood and the enemy
Scabbard - 'Double frogged' sling to hold the bayonet and/or tomahawk/sword
Cartridge Box - (Essential) Holds prepared charges of powder
Canteen - (Essential) Wooden, tin or gourd. A must on those hot days
Musket Tool - Multipurpose screwdriver for changing flints and performing in-field maintenance
Spare Flints - (Essential) You can't fire a musket if you don't have extra when needed
Wooden Flints - For drills and practice ... extra safety and keeps the frizzen from wearing down
Hammer Stall - (Essential) A protective leather thong that goes over the frizzen, preventing a spark from accidentally firing the musket (required safety item)
Flash Guard - (Essential) Keeps the hot vent flame of the musket's touch hole from charring your fellow comrades (required safety item)
Haversack - Generic sack that carries eating utensils, rations and whatever goodies you carry with you into the field
Knapsack - Generic sack that carries eating utensils, rations and whatever goodies you carry with you into the field
Firestarter Kit - A kit containing flint, a steel striker, charcloth and tow. What is a match?
Rank - A linked site denoting the various insignia of rank
Tent - Protection for your body and equipment on those cold, wet nights
Cooking / Eating Utensils - It is nice to be able to cook and eat the food you bring
Stool - Always handy to sit down in camp
Drill of 1764 - This pamphlet is THE drill for an early war unit, such as ourselves. A MUST for every haversack (i.e. get it out and learn it).
Von Steuben - (Coming Soon) Good to know since most Continental Line events use this drill format
Pickering - (Coming Soon) Popular in Massachusetts during the early stages of the war
Note: Although many of these items would not be needed for a single day's event (such as a tent), all are quite handy and used during our weekend long engagements.
Men's Clothing Links
Men's Clothing Guidelines from 18th Century New England Life
All the pen & ink drawings linked to this page can
be found in Klinger's Sketch Book 76
Photos are from the unit's photo library
- 11th PA historical plate previously cited -
Use the BACK key to return to the Previous Page