White Tarbucket-style Cap Or Hat



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White Tarbucket-style Cap Or Hat

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White Tarbucket-style Cap Or Hat
circa 1835-1836
John B. Baker, Boston, Massachusetts

Content Description: 

White-painted tarbucket-style militia cap or hat fitted with stamped brass, rolled edge visor painted green on its underside, and a large half sunburst brass cap plate characteristic of plates popular after 1835. Affixed to the plate are silver-plated stamped brass block letters "TWB." The crown is finished with a 5/8" wide brass trim and a stamped leather rosette with a convex 9/16" diameter eagle button "A" at center. Base of cap is trimmed with a 1" wide black wool band that backs a 9/16" wide gold braid. Two 5/16" gold braids are similarly backed and mounted diagonally, starting at a point just to the left of the sunburst and 2 1/2" above the cap base, and running across the rear of the cap and securing beneath the lip of the brass crown rim on the opposite side of the cap. Its lower end is trimmed with a flat civilian-type button 7/8" in diameter. A 6" tall dark blue wool pompom, mounted on a copper wire post, accompanies the hat and, although it fits the plume socket, may not be an original element. Inside, pasted to the underside of the crown, is the blue paper label of: "John B. Baker,/Saddle, Trunk,/and/MILITARY CAP/Manufacturer/No.2, Elm Street/Boston." Written in ink script on the leather of the rear, inside: "22 3/4/31." The paint is slightly abraded in an arc on the right side where a gilt tassel once swung back and forth. The letters "TWB" could refer to the Winslow Blues, a Boston company, although a portrait in the OSV collection shows a soldier of that unit wearing a different style cap in 1820, and the company disbanded in 1838; could new uniforms have been acquired in the mid-30s? Alternatively, the initials may stand for the Washington Blues, a Mendon, Massachusetts company. A very similar but unlabeled example in the Guthman Collection is believed to have been used by a Salem, MA company and several white caps are in the collection of the Essex Institute. Boston city directories cite John B. Baker at No. 2 Elm Street for the years 1835 and 1836.

Physical Description: 

Leather, sheet brass, gold braid, white paint. H: 8 1/2" (21.6 cm); Diameter of crown: 6 7/8" (17.4 cm)
1 Old Sturbridge Village Road,Massachusetts,Sturbridge,01566
Collection of Old Sturbridge Village