A Historical Research Project Compiled by Jim Hayden, 1st NH Regt.
May 22, 1775 - January, 1777
October 8, 1776
Uniform to consist of:
- 1 Regimental Jacket
- 1 Jacket without sleeves (waistcoat)
- 1 Pair buckskin and 2 Pair Linen or woolen breeches
- 1 Hat or Leathern Cap 2 Shirts
- 1 Hunting Shirt
- 2 Pairs Overalls
- 2 Pairs Stockings
- 2 Pairs Shoes
- 1 Blanket
Source: Kidder, Frederick; History of the 1st New Hampshire Regiment; Peter Randall, Publisher; 1973, 1975; Pg 62
On Jan. 1, 1777 the unit’s designation reverts to the 1st NH Regt.Source: Wright, Pg 197
That a suit of clothes be annually given to each NCO & private soldier to consist for the present year of:
- 2 linen hunting shirts
- 2 pr. overalls
- a leathern or woolen waistcoat with sleeves
- 1 pr of breeches
- a hat or leathern cap
- 2 shirts
- 2 pr. of stockings
- 2 pr. of shoes”
February 17, 1777 - March 16, 1778
October 28, 1778
Lottery is held to determine which coats (blue or brown) from France (ordered earlier in the year) would be issued to units. New Hampshire drew brown. Uniforms received are described by Continental Clothier Geo. Measam as being of good quality cloth, lined with white serge (finer wool), white waistcoats and breeches. The breeches were made for knee buckles which were not supplied. Coats were well cut, being large and warm with the lapels made to button over the breast and belly, with plain white buttons and slash sleeves made to button underneath. The coats and waistcoats were lined with white serge and the breeches with strong brown linen. Stockings were lead colored.
Source: Zlatich (Vol 1) Pg 18
November 16, 1778
The New Hampshire regiments were issued 1105 French made brown coats faced in red with slash style cuffs; white waistcoats and breeches, brown overalls and lead colored stockings.
Source: Papers of the Continental Congress (National Archives) and Zlatich (Vol 1) Pg 37
From the Board of War’s follow up of Washington’s ordinance of 3/29/79: Coats of strong blue with white facings for NH, MA, RI & CT troops. Waiscoats and Breeches of white. Overalls if possible. Smallclothes to be of wool in winter and linen in summer.
(There is no indication that the 1NH were ever issued these uniforms.)
Source: Finke & McBarron; Continental Army Uniforms and Specifications, 1779-81; Military Collector and Historian, Vol XIV, No. 2; Washington, DC; Summer, 1962
NH Board of War sent its Continental troops:
- 909 black stocks
- 2,846 pairs of shoes
- 1,086 leather knee garters
- 20 pairs boots
- 243 1/2yds. linen
Source: Zlatich & Marko; General Washington’s Army: Vol. 2, 1779-83; Osprey: London; 1995
August 9, 1780
A combined French and Spanish fleet captures a large stock of British clothing off Cadiz, Spain.Source: IBID, Pg 6
June 18, 1781
From an Order of the Continental Congress:
“That all NCO & soldiers…be annually furnished with: 1 regimental coat full made; 1 pr cloth breeches; 1 cotton vest; 1 pr woolen overalls; 2 pr woolen hose, 2 pr woolen socks, 1 felt or leathern cap, 4 shirts, 2 pr linen overalls, 4 pr strong shoes, 1 blanket, 1 rifle shirt, 1 pr woolen gloves, 2 pr shoe buckles & 1 clasp for stock every 2 years…summer clothing to be issued on the 15th day of April, winter clothing on the 1st day of November”
Source: Kidder, Pg 68
The captured British clothing arrives from Spain:
3,683 coats, 2714 breeches, 737 waistcoats, 3,781 shirts,3,752 stocks, 7,495 pr. shoes, 3,312 plain and laced privates’ and 217 sergeants’ hats, 6 silver laced sergeants; caps and 2,271 pr shoes. The British uniforms were sent to Mjr. Gen Heath at Continental Headquarters, Newburgh, NY where the coats were dyed brown.
Source: Zlatich (Vol 2), Pg 6
November 14, 1781
From a letter to Gen John Stark from Maj. Gen. W. Heath:
Headquarters, Continental Village, November 14, 1781(in part):
“I am happy in the prospect of the army’s receiving a competent supply of clothing this year. A part of it is now in the store made up by the regimental tailors. Every regiment, whether present or not, will have strict justice done it. I think the paymasters of the two New Hampshire regiments had best come down immediately with their returns, made out and signed, conformable to the ordinance of clothing and late order, that they may be present at the distribution.”
Source: Memoir of General John Stark
November 29, 1781
From the response of Stark to Heath, dated Saratoga (in part):
“In your observations on the clothing, you mention that the materials are to be sent, and the clothes are to be made by the regimental tailors. I must observe that there is but one tailor in the New Hampshire Line, and he a drunken rascal, that could be hardly compelled to make three coats in a winter.”
December 12, 1781
Again from Heath to Stark, dated Headquarters, Hudson Highlands (in part):
“The soldiers will receive ample supplies of clothing, but it will be late before it is ready. The paymasters of the New Hampshire regiments have drawn shoes, hose, some overalls, shirts, &c. for the most necessitous men. These will be conveyed to Albany in a few days, when all the detachments will join their corps. the paymasters of the regiments think that the clothing can soon be made up for the men of your line.”
December 12, 1781
From a letter from Stark to Heath:
“I am sure it is not practicable for the troops that are here to go to the Mohawk River until they are clothed. Indeed I am obliged to detain the six month’s men to do the neccessary camp duty on account of the nakedness of the Continental Troops.
In the last duty report, only 36 ‘three years and during the war’ men, including sergeants, were fit for duty in the two regiments. The remainder are so naked that they cannot procure fuel for their own use.
If there is a possibility of sending some blankets, shirts, overalls, stockings and shoes, they might afford a temporary relief, and I dare say they would prove satisfactory.”
Source: Kidder, Pg 75
NOTE: It is apparent that these two notes crossed in the mail.
June 5, 1783
Specifications for the materials used in 1783 uniforms from Samuel Caldwell, former assistant to the Continental Clothier:
- “Coat: of an average size
- 1 5/8 yds blue 6/4 cloth for outside
- 1/5 yd scarlet cloth for facing
- 1/2 yds. oznabrigs for pockets
- staying and sleeve linings
- 1/2 yds white shalloon for skirt lining and facing the forepart
- 32 large buttons
- 2 small buttons
- 4 hook and eyes.
- skirts 5/8 yd white 3/4 cloth
- 3/8 yd oznabrigs for pockets and staying
- 1/4 yds flannel for lining
- 11 small buttons
- 3/4 yd white 6/4 cloth
- 1 5/8 yds dowlas or best oznabrigs for lining and pockets
- 2 lg buttons
- 12 small buttons
- 1 3/8 yds blue 6/4 duffil
- 5/8 yd oznabrigs for pockets and stays
- 2 lg and 5 sm buttons
- 2 1/4 yds ravens duck
- 1/4 yd oznabrigs for pockets
- 2 yds brown Russia sheeting
- thread and fringe.
- 3/8 yds white Irish linen
- 1 Pr.
- 1 pr of white yarn
- finished with metal button
- white looping
- Black leather lined with white jean.
Source: IBID, Pg 10
January 1, 1784
The New Hampshire Battalion is disbanded in New Windsor, NY.