AUSTRALIAN ARMY SLOUCH HAT WITH SENIOR OFFICER (COLONEL/BRIGADIER) BULLION HAT BADGE
VINTAGE AUSTRALIAN SENIOR OFFICER'S SLOUCH HAT BY JOHN MARDSLEY & SONS - ORIGINAL
This is a vintage 1950's - 60's Australian Slouch hat. It has a fur felt body, with snap button closure and twin sets of air vent grommets, A beige puggaree with Brigadiers padded badge at the front of the hat band which is gold bullion thread with an embroidered lion over a Queen’s crown. Worn by Australian Army senior officers (Colonel and Brigadier).
It has a leather sweatband and has the original maker mark: John Bardsley & Sons Pty, Ltd. Marked also with broad arrow and "Fur Felt".
Size 54 cm.
The slouch hat is an object strongly associated with Australian identity. The word ‘slouch’ refers to the sloping brim. The brim is made from rabbit-fur felt or wool felt and is always worn with a puggaree. The Army refers to the slouch hat by its official designation - hat khaki fur felt (KFF).
The slouch hat became a famous symbol of the Australian fighting man in WWI and continued to be worn throughout WW2. Its use since that time has made it a national symbol.
The origins of the slouch hat began with the Victorian Mounted Rifles in 1885. The Victorian hat was an ordinary bush felt hat turned up on the right side to ensure it would not be caught during the drill movement of 'shoulder arms' from 'order arms'.
By 1890, State military commandants had agreed that all Australian forces, except the artillery corps, should wear a looped-up hat of uniform pattern. The hat was turned up on the right side in Victoria and Tasmania, and on the left side in all other States to allow for different drill movements.
The Slouch hat became standard issue in 1903.