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Object Record

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Object ID # 1967.027.001ab
Object Name Uniform
Title Bengal Lancers Tunic & Vest
Lexicon category 3: Personal Artifacts
Date Early 20th-century
Year Range from 1899
Year Range to 1905
Made Unknown
Place of Origin Unknown, British-make
Description Bengal Lancers tunic and vest. The short jacket is red-collared, with lots of gilt at the collar and jacket edges. The rest of the jacket is a black coloured fabric.The vest is black with a lot of gold/gilt braid. The jacket has a high Mandarin-style collar in red. The bottom edge of the collar is trimmed with gold braid, while the top edge has wider gold woven fabric trimming it, which continues down the front. The front has eleven large hook and eyes. The left side of the front has a row of heavy metal beads. The front of the jacket is pointed. Thre are button-down epaulette shoulder tabs with heavy gold braid. The shoulders each have a convex crown and DCO brass button, a crown motif insiginia piece with a red plush insert, and a quatrefoil brass badge with three motifs centrally and a motto or wording around it (need to decipher it yet). The back is slightly-pointed at the bottom edge and is Princess-lined. The sleeves are straight with red-coloured, pointed cuffs with gold trim and two goldtone buttons each with "DCO". There is red piping on the Princess seams at the back and this continues down the arm seam. The collar edge, the central front edges,and the bottom of the jacket are trimmed with 2.5 cm (one-inch) wide gold braid. At the centre back, on the bottom edge at the end of two seams are two toggles of a coppery-gold woven fabric. The toggles are firmly-stuffed and perhaps might have woven wire in them? Their function is not known yet (pads? catches for loops?) The interior of the jacket has a red-coloured lining and is partially quilted. There is one gold loop on the left inside front area, and an interior pocket on the left.
The vest (B) has a high collar that fastens up with two hooks and eyes. The front fastens with nine sets of hooks and eyes. Over these fastenings are five frogs with toggle buttons. The vest is also elaborately trimmed and decorated with gold braid. The front has two slit pockets edged with soutache (braid). The back is a plain red cotton fabric, with a belt at the waist. The back has a two-tine buckle with "BRITISH MAKE" on it. The vest is lined with white fabric, but the collar is lined in navy-blue.

Makers mark The back buckle has "BRITISH MAKE" on it.
Provenance The uniform formerly belonged to and worn by Colonel Fraser Hunter (b. 1876-d. 1959) of Durham, Grey County, c. 1900, while he served in India.

Subsequently owned by George Wakeford who resided at Owen Sound, Ontario in 1967. He was a former Public Relations Officer and Military Historian of the Grey & Simcoe Foresters Regiment. It is unknown when, how or why he acquired the set. There is a memorial to Fraser Hunter at the Owen Sound Armouries building.

Collection Military, 20th-c Collection
Material Wool Flannel/Cotton/Braid/Metal/Thread/Dye
Found Durham, Municipality of West Grey, Grey County
People Hunter, Colonel Fraser
Hunter, James Hill
Subjects Uniforms
Military officers
Military parades & ceremonies
Search Terms Durham