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Original U.S. Army Late Indian Wars 9th Infantry Officer Kepi

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This wonderful totally genuine United States Army 9th Infantry kepi used during the end of Indian Wars and possibly during the outset of the Spanish American War. The 9th infantry took part in the during the Apache campaign of 1886 against Geronimo and following the end of the Indian Wars the regiment participated in the Spanish–American War. It fought in the Battle of San Juan Hill.

This U.S. Army Kepi features a bullion 9th infantry badge, fabric of dark blue wool broadcloth. The crown stands 2.5" high at the front, 3.5" at the rear seam. The top is 6.5" in diameter from inner seam to seam. The body of the cap meets a band of wool seamed only at the back and stiffened with leather. The cap's interior is lined with a rayon type fabric. and has a leather 2" wide leather sweatband. The crown of the interior is nicely maker marked in silver JW with logo. The underside of the sweatband is ink stamped and reads:


The flat visor is original to the hat, and composed of black patent leather. It is edged with oilcloth that is stitched in place. The kepi features two rows of gold bullion tape around the band which we think indicates a rank of Captain. Patent leather chinstrap with brass Eagle buttons.

9th Infantry in the Civil War and late 19th-century Indian wars
During the American Civil War the 9th Infantry Regiment, was ordered to San Francisco prior to its transfer to the East. Its Colonel George Wright (general) was promoted to command of the Department of the Pacific, and the order was revoked. The regiment was left on the Pacific Coast where it had duty at the posts near San Francisco, performing provost guard duty in that city until late in 1865. Following the death of Colonel Wright in the wreck of the steamer Brother Jonathan, Colonel John H. King succeeded to command of the 9th Regiment in December 1866.

Near Fort Phil Kearney, Wyoming, 2 August 1867. The Wagon Box Fight is one of the great traditions of the Infantry in the West. A small force of 30 men on the 9th Infantry led by Brevet Major James Powell was suddenly attacked in the early morning hours by some 2,000 Sioux Indians. Choosing to stand and fight, these soldiers hastily erected a barricade of wagon boxes, and during the entire morning stood off charge after charge. The Sioux finally withdrew, leaving behind several hundred killed and wounded. The defending force suffered only three casualties. By their coolness, firmness and confidence these infantrymen showed what a few determined men can accomplish with good marksmanship and guts.

During the period from 1866 to 1869, elements of the regiment were in the Snake War in Northern California and Oregon and in conflict with the Chemehuevi in Southern California. In June 1869, the regiment was ordered to the Department of the Platte, where it absorbed the 2nd establishment of the 27th Infantry Regiment. It was from the 27th Infantry Regiment that the regiment gets its Civil War battle honors, derived from the 2nd Battalion of the 18th Infantry Regiment that was the cadre around which the 27th formed at the end of the Civil War.

Following the reorganization the 9th Infantry performed garrison duty at various posts and guard duty on the Union Pacific Railroad line. In May 1873, six companies, A, D, E, F, H and I, were sent to the Department of Dakota for duty with the Yellowstone Expedition, escorting the engineers locating the Northern Pacific Railroad. From the summer of 1874 to May 1876, the regiment was stationed at posts on or near the Sioux reservation in Nebraska and Wyoming and was almost constantly escorting wagon trains. In the summer of 1875 Companies C, E and H, were in the Black Hills, Dakota, as part of the escort to the Newton–Jenney Party, Company E remained in the field until November assisting in ejecting white intruders who had entered Sioux territory.

In May 1876, Companies C, G and H became a part of the Big Horn and Yellowstone Expedition under command of Brigadier General Crook and were in the field until late in October taking part in the engagement with the Indians at Tongue River, Montana, 9 June, the Battle of the Rosebud, and the Battle of Slim Buttes. Companies G and H also assisted in repelling a night attack by Indians on the camp on Goose Creek, Wyoming, 9 July 1876. In the early part of September the entire command was without rations for a number of days, and subsisted on horse flesh and a small quantity of dried meat and fruit captured at Slim Buttes. In October, 1876, the Powder River Expedition was organized and Companies A, B, D, F, I and K formed a part of it. They remained in the field until January 1877, during the most severe part of the winter, and practically brought to a termination the Great Sioux War of 1876.

In July 1877, Companies B, D, F, H, I and K were a part of the force sent to Chicago, Illinois, at the time of the Great Railroad Strike of 1877. They remained a month performing guard duty over various public and private institutions.

During the summer and fall of 1878 Companies B, C, H and I were a part of a force of observation on the Little Missouri River, and in the northwestern part of the Black Hills.

In October 1878 Companies G and K were part of the force in the field in the Cheyenne War. Company K was mounted and took active part in the pursuit.

In October, 1879, Companies E and K went into the field in the White River War, remaining until July 1880.

In 1883, Col. John S. Mason, took command of the 9th Regiment and in July 1886, the regiment went to the Department of Arizona. During their service there the regiment was in garrisons at every post in Arizona and at some posts in New Mexico. Four companies, C, E, H and I, were in the field in New Mexico for about a month during the Apache campaign of 1886 against Geronimo.

Following the end of the Indian Wars the regiment participated in the Spanish–American War. It fought in the Battle of San Juan Hill.

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