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overalls and overtrousers

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  • michaelzatarga
    I ve been looking through my Henry Steele Commager s Spirit of 76 and came upon this one that further muddies the water abit. Captain John Chester to the
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 30, 2006
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      I've been looking through my Henry Steele Commager's "Spirit of 76"
      and came upon this one that further muddies the water abit.

      Captain John Chester to the Reverend Joseph Fish of Stonington,
      Connectuicut,

      Camp at Cambridge, July 22, 1775

      Rev. and Much Respected Sir:
      ...I shall endeavor, as far as my time and business will permit, to
      give you, sir, the particulars of the battle of Charlestown...
      {Bunker Hill}

      As to my own concern in it, with that of my company, would inform
      that one subaltern, one sergeant and thirty privates were draughted
      out over night to intrench. They tarried, and fought till the
      retreat. Just after dinner on Saturday, 17th ult., I was walking
      out from my lodgings, quite calm and composed, and all at once the
      drums beat to arms, and bells rang, and a great noise in Cambridge.
      Capt. Putnam came by one full gallop. "What is the matter?" says I.
      "Have you not heard?"
      "No."
      "Why, the regulars are landing at Charlestown," says he, "and Father
      says you must all meet and march immediately to Bunker Hill to
      oppose the enemy."

      I waited not, but ran and got my arms and ammunition, and hasted to
      my company (who were in the church for barracks) and found them
      nearly ready to march. We soon marched, with our frocks and
      trowsers on over our other clothes (for our company is in uniform
      wholly blue, turned up with red), for we were loath to expose
      ourselves by our dress, and down we marched....

      This company was wearing trowers and frocks over their uniforms. An
      interesting view from an original source.

      YOS,
      Michael Zatarga
      33rd Regiment of Foot
    • Roy Najecki
      Interesting quote. I think the BAR trouser/overall/breeches pattern mentioned that trousers were sometimes made to fit over breeches. I didn t question it,
      Message 2 of 2 , Dec 1, 2006
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        Interesting quote. I think the BAR trouser/overall/breeches pattern mentioned that trousers were sometimes made to fit over breeches. I didn't question it, but this quote seems to support it. Consequently I did have an oversize pair to fit over my overalls for the Seven Crucial Days event in Dec '75. As to the frock, Capt Chester quote seems to describing what I think is more commonly known as an overshirt. Such overshirts were worn to protect your better clothing/uniform when doing chores such as carrying wood, farm work, or fatigue duty.

        Roy Najecki
        40th Foot

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: michaelzatarga
        To: Revlist@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Thursday, November 30, 2006 9:10 PM
        Subject: [Revlist] overalls and overtrousers


        I've been looking through my Henry Steele Commager's "Spirit of 76"
        and came upon this one that further muddies the water abit.

        Captain John Chester to the Reverend Joseph Fish of Stonington,
        Connectuicut,

        Camp at Cambridge, July 22, 1775

        Rev. and Much Respected Sir:
        ...I shall endeavor, as far as my time and business will permit, to
        give you, sir, the particulars of the battle of Charlestown...
        {Bunker Hill}

        As to my own concern in it, with that of my company, would inform
        that one subaltern, one sergeant and thirty privates were draughted
        out over night to intrench. They tarried, and fought till the
        retreat. Just after dinner on Saturday, 17th ult., I was walking
        out from my lodgings, quite calm and composed, and all at once the
        drums beat to arms, and bells rang, and a great noise in Cambridge.
        Capt. Putnam came by one full gallop. "What is the matter?" says I.
        "Have you not heard?"
        "No."
        "Why, the regulars are landing at Charlestown," says he, "and Father
        says you must all meet and march immediately to Bunker Hill to
        oppose the enemy."

        I waited not, but ran and got my arms and ammunition, and hasted to
        my company (who were in the church for barracks) and found them
        nearly ready to march. We soon marched, with our frocks and
        trowsers on over our other clothes (for our company is in uniform
        wholly blue, turned up with red), for we were loath to expose
        ourselves by our dress, and down we marched....

        This company was wearing trowers and frocks over their uniforms. An
        interesting view from an original source.

        YOS,
        Michael Zatarga
        33rd Regiment of Foot





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