A short advisory on Class A Khakis (pre-planning stage for April 9, 2009 commemoration at Mt. Samat, Philippines)
If you are planning on doing a PS officer impression, the Type A jacket you have (which is most likely of the late ww2 to mid 1960s type), it will do. Take note that in this case, the sambrowne belt is mandatory for all officers.
This is the correct type used by PS enlisted ranks just before the war:
Note in this example the steel helmet is worn, but typically U.S. Army regulations prescribe the wear of the campaign hat with the type A jacket.
Also note that the type A jacket is normally worn with cavalry type riding pants, but they can also be worn with straight slacks (pants).
For infantry, canvas leggings or wrap around puttees are worn (however I do not recommend puttees for the simple fact that "most pinoy onlookers" might mistake you for Japanese soldiers. This is something I realized from the discussions)
Note, the correct Type A jacket has no central vertical pleats on the front pockets. They are flush and flat. The pocket flaps are squared, not pointed. The pre war type A jacket also looks very close fitting on the body, The "waistline area" is high, making the "skirt" of the jacket looking long and "flared".
And finally, make sure you have the complete set of insignias, discs on collar, regimental badge on lapel. Additional stuff like "qualification bars" also look nice. A bare type A unform is most unattractive.
Last Edit: Jul 14, 2011 4:02:34 GMT -5 by RayAdillO
Thanks Lawrence, I do hope to finish off With your guinit orders. Sorry it's taking this long.
ONE HISTORICAL REMINDER FOR ALL;
It is a fact that towards the end of the Bataan campaign most units still offering resistance in Bataan looked more or less the same...a hodgepodge of khakis, blue denims, one-piece sage green HBTs, broadie helmets and other headgear. During the bataan campaign, IT WAS POSSIBLE FOR A PA SOLDIER TO LOOK LIKE A PHILIPPINE SCOUT.
Also, the Philippine Army indeed had combat personel who were issued steel helmets and fought in full khakis, particularly those of members of the 1st Regular Division PA, and certainly members of the 2nd Regular Division PC.
Note that the "guinit helmet" (introduced in 1938) is supposed to be the P.A. equivalent of the U.S. Army campaign hat and NOT THE STEEL HELMET.
Prior to around 1938, the P.A. was also using a shellacked version of the U.S. felt camapign hat. The common combat helmet was supposed to be the same steel broadie helmet for U.S. Army and Philippine Army units. A total of about 20,000 steel helmets did arrive for use by the PA before the outbreak of war. The P.A. Reserve Divisions naturally would have been the last in line to be issued such equipment.
As reenactors, we just make the distinction between PS (steel helmets and khakis) and PA (guinit helmets and blue denims), but as living historians it is important to know this information when asked by the public.
Last Edit: Jan 10, 2010 3:06:47 GMT -5 by RayAdillO
Post by pedroscollection on Jan 11, 2010 3:17:18 GMT -5
The Phil. Commonwealth Army standard combat uniform is also a khaki. All USAFFE khaki uniform naman. The PA only used the Dungaree (which is used as fatigue uniform for drills, dirty works, engineering works etc.) & also khaki shorts because there's a shortage of long khaki shirt & pants in Bataan, so Dungaree & khaki shorts were incorporated as combat uniforms (but its not a standard or not official combat uniform). This is also according to Col. Resty Aguilar.
The standard head gear is also the Doughboy steel helmet, but again as Ray said, the last priority is the PA & especially the reserves & since there's a shortage, the Guinit for PA was used.
Great proof will show that PA used the same uniform of the PS are the actual photos of the Battle of Bataan & the Death March, majority of the Filipinos used to wear the standard long sirt khaki & pants that the Dungaree or shorts & the photos show mix unit of PS, PA & PC already.
Col. Resty even mentioned that the PA 1st Div used to have leggings like the PS & if some wore Dungarees they also placed leggings.
We just like to show the distinction of PA & PS & show also as many variation of uniforms as possible during reenactments to represent as many units as possible & educate the people.
This is just a brown leather belt with square brass buckle (single tounge), no shoulder strap. (as seen from pictures above). They are not too difficult to find on ebay.
The "sambrowne belt" is any waistbelt with a shoulder strap fixed with the waistbelt. It was originally designed to support the weight of a cavalry saber.
The practice of officers exclusively wearing sambrowne belts began in WW1 among all allied armies. (French, British & Commonwealth, U.S.)
I think the British or French sambrowne belt will do as long as they are brown. There may be minute differences such as the shoulder sling and waistbelt buckles tend to be thick round wire bent to the shape of a square buckle (doyble tounged).
The buckles for the U.S. model used in the 1930s and early 40s are wider and flatter. The arrangement for the attachment of swords may also slightly differ, but those are minor details.
The most distinct feature of the U.S. model is the chain metal sword hanger which is often missing on sets available on ebay. Hangers are out there from time to time, but rarely will you see them together with the belt as a complete set.
It would look great if you have a U.S. model 1902 officer's saber to hang on it.
Naturally the PA officer corps also used the U.S. model sambrowne belt.
Last Edit: Jan 27, 2010 0:52:04 GMT -5 by RayAdillO
THE TYPE "A" UNIFORM FOR PHILIPPINE ARMY ENLISTED RANKS
Question: Was there a type "A" khaki uniform issued to Philippine Army enlistedmen?
Here is a popular photo often miscaptioned as "General MacArthur reviewing a Philippine Scout unit."
Are these soldiers PA or PS or even PC?
Note that when a "guest of honor" (such as MacArthur) is invited to review a line of troops, he/she must customarily be escorted by the offcer in command of the troops being reviewed (the guy walking next to MacArthur wearing a saber). This officer cannot be PS because he wears shoulder boards (epaulettes). PS officers are regular U.S. Army who don't wear shoulder boards.
Well it's a B&W photo, is the officer is wearing blue PA or red PC shoulder boards and could they actually be Constabulary and not Philippine Army?
If we look at the shoulder patch on at least one soldier, and also the regimental flag next to the U.S. and Philippine flags.......
It would suggest that this unit of troops belong to the 1st Infantry Regiment of the !st Infantry "Tabak" Division Philippine Army.
I think part of the reason for the confusion is because when we see Philippine troops wearing campaign hats, the tendency is to think they are PS. The fact is the Philippine Army also wore campaign hats from 1936 to 1938. The "novelty" leather cartridge pouches are a turn of the century British army pattern used during the Boer War.
Only sometime during 1938, the PA (and PC) switched to the coconut sun helmet (guinit hat).
Note that the type of campaign hat used by the Philippine Army was made out of fine straw stiffened with brown paint, not felt like what the PC used earlier nor what U.S. Army/PS continued use after 1938 well into 1941/42.
So yes at least some Philippine Army enlisted regulars did get their issue Type "A"s from the commonwealth government, but did some PA reservists from the enlisted ranks also get it?
I love this photo which came with documents which I got from ebay ;D The photo above is a Philippine Army reserve unit stationed in Masbate during a parade sometime in 1941.
To conclude, yes even with the limited defense budget, the Philippine commonwealth government did authorize the wear of a Type "A" uniform for both regular and reserve PA units and in fact issued these uniforms throughout the pre-war years. However, not all of the men received them and perhaps only a small fraction did. This is what happens when one tries to raise an 80,000 man army of eleven divisions in little more than five years under a buget of 8 million pesos per year, (a big chunk of it going off to pay the salary of its "field marshall", he, he.).
Last Edit: Feb 4, 2010 7:59:46 GMT -5 by RayAdillO
Post by legionnaire on Feb 4, 2010 12:38:36 GMT -5
Aren't those constabulary troops carrying springfields from the photo you got from ebay? A reserve unit of the PA carrying Springfields? Weren't the PA all issued P-17's till the WWII begun in the P.I. This is really totally different.
I saw tons of photos from my last two visits to Rico Jose and he showed me Constabulary wearing class A's with puttees. And all the PA pics Rico had from his extensive collection showed them wearing shorts. We studied them and discussed about their uniforms a lot. and only saw PA officers in class A's.
The picture came with another photo, both stapled to the soldier's discharge papers.
I assume this is Pvt. Mercurio Macoy in his normal khaki shorts
Definitely that's a P17 Enfield he's sporting.
With regards to this other photo, I assume that's Pvt. Macoy in the middle of this photo or at least one of the guys here marching.
But I can understand that judging from this angle of the photo shot and the poor quality (and age) of this picture, it will be difficult to be certain if the rifles seen here are any different from the one Macoy is holding in the other photo.
Both the P-17 and the M03 may or may not have those hand grip grooves on the stock, but note both rifles in each photo have them. Like the M03, the P17 also has a slight "hump" and a median notch carved out of the top part of the wood stock to clear the view for the rear sight alignment with the front. It's just not clear where the rear sights are located. (if it were well to the rear and in-line with the bolt like the P17, or if it is further up front and almost at the middle of the rifle like the M03). I assume they are the same rifle in both photos. Does anyone else have an opinion on this?...Please feel free to comment
About that picture with MacArthur reviewing troops: I think it is fairly obvious that they are handling M03 springfields. Yes it's even highly probable that they came from constabulary stocks. But then again, the PC was after all under the payroll of the commonwealth government. It could authorize HPA (Headquarters Philippine Army) to begin forming and training the first PA units with springfields from PC armories while waiting for the shipments of Enfields to arrive. It can even take over PC facilities, commandeer PC officers and NCOs as PA instructors, etc.
Lastly, Quezon was not the patient type. He was finally authorized by the U.S. congress to build his commonwealth army, not just another "police force" but a real army. He would naturally want a "show piece" unit of Philippine Army soldiers sooner than later... maybe not a whole division but at least one or two battalions from it's premier army formation.
I don't think even Rico can say that the PA enlisted never had type "A" uniforms. Certainly, there is a deluge of PA photos of troops in khaki shorts or denims because that was what was common, but that does not discount that there were a few that had been issued.
Last Edit: Feb 4, 2010 18:02:13 GMT -5 by RayAdillO
The parade picture really looks like they're carrying 1903's. They don't have the "mickey mouse" front site guards that the 1917 has. The stock on the rifle of the rightmost guy doesn't look like it has the semi-pistol grip of the 1917.
1903 is my guess. Like you said, they could have been PC armory pieces.
That's okay guys, it's fair enough. I find it rather interesting to contemplate and reflect on these things, why we'd get so worked up on the tiniest details, ha, ha.
I think another major reason for the difficulties in confirming old photos and distinguishing which troops belong to what branch of service is that photos of the Philippine Scouts are very rare indeed. You will hardly find period articles published specifically about the PS, let alone photos. The Philippine Constabulary and even the Philippine Commonwealth Army during it's short life have many more photos and media coverage.
Most PS pictures tend to be for private keeping, or for the regimental scrap book. Not for the newspapers and magazines. It's the same situation for the newsreels.
I even see some photos from the PSHS website with native igorot constabulary mistaken as PS.
The Regular U.S. Army during this time was not particularly held in high esteem in terms of "the social ladder". There was much more U.S. public interest (and support) for state volunteer militias and "constabulary" militias. I guess this was in keeping with the American "minuteman" legend of the American revolution. Even in the American Civil War, there was greater regard for volunteer militia.
You can see this as very evident during the Spanish-American War. Teddy Roosevelt and his mixed bag of young New York millionaires, cowboys, petty criminals, and amateur adventurers enjoyed greater public acclaim than did the U.S. regulars. It was the same in Philippines.
Last Edit: Feb 5, 2010 19:52:34 GMT -5 by RayAdillO
Let me put it this way Captain Rudy. Let's not think of how the U.S. Army regulars/P.S. was regarded in the Philippines by local Filipinos. Generally, Philippine society didn't really make such distinctions among the branches. A militaryman was a militaryman, plain and simple.
The U.S. never sent PS or PC contingents to France in WW1, so there was really no basis of popular comparison which one was better. The PS perhaps had slightly higher pay than the PC, but the PC had a more visible public profile in terms of being the the insular police force. Only during WW2 and after the war did the superior combat value of the PS really become generally acknowledged, (only to be forgotten again by present generations).
During those "inter-war" years (between WW1 and WW2), the U.S. Army was allowed to shrink so much in size that even some south american countries had bigger armies than the U.S.
The U.S. Army was tiny in comparison to the territorial size , population and industrial capacity of America itself. In short, the American public had little interst in maintaining a large standing army during peacetime. Imagine that the U.S. only had the 7th largest Army at the very beginning of WW2, smaller than Brazil's. Although the U.S. had the second largest navy next to Great Britain's.
Ironically, the French Army was thought to be the biggest and best model army in the western world after WW1 and before WW2. Maybe Americans held the capabilities of the U.S. Navy in high esteem during the 1920s and 1930s, but not the U.S. Army as a professional force. Most Americans themselves voted it to have lesser funds which precisely made it that way.
In terms of stateside attitudes, the U.S. Army regular establishment held little public interest, and therefore media coverage. (commercially published and serialized photo images and newsreel film images).
It's not the same when it comes to volunteer militia or constabulary because it was they who were thought to be the itinerant gun swinging "lawmen", the Wyatt Earps", or the citizen's "peacekeepers" of that era.
These are just expolratory thoughts Rudy....I RAISE ANOTHER GLASS TO OUR PATRON SAINT SAN MIGUEL!
BTW, that uniform I bought from ebay came with the buttons already sewn in place. There were no apparent "holes" to insert the back loops of the brass buttons, All I know is that it was issued and the sergeant's stripes of the past owner came with it. But if are going to order from the Philippines we can always have the tailor make those holes to emplace the buttons.
Last Edit: Feb 8, 2010 5:03:19 GMT -5 by RayAdillO
Post by legionnaire on Feb 16, 2010 10:34:10 GMT -5
One piece of equipment that came under a lot of criticism was the guinit hat which was standard issue.
The hat resembled the U.S. campaign hats in shape, but were manufactured locally using coconut fiber. Compared to U.S.-made models, the hat was cheaper, cooler, and lighter, and it helped provide impetus to local industry. However, officers and men complained that it warped easily, did not stand up under rain, and tended to crack when it fell on a hard surface. It was reported that in less than three months it lost it's shape. Detractors said that although it was cheaper than the U.S. felt hats, in the long run it turned out more expensive since it had to be replaced every three months.
In July the PA army - reflecting the committee's conclusions-decided that the guinit campaign hat was unsatisfactory, and thus was being dropped.
The Guinit helmet, rather than the campaign hat, would instead become part of the standard army uniform.
pp 109, Growth and development, The Philippine Army 1935-1942 - Ricardo Trota Jose