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Special Interests - Groups & Societies => The Barracks => Topic started by: Books OToole on May 20, 2006, 04:49:24 pm

Title: Pioneer's Insignia
Post by: Books OToole on May 20, 2006, 04:49:24 pm
Some years back I came across a sleeve patch insignia (similar to that of the Saddler's Sgt.) of crossed axes for pioneers.  I have not ever been able to find this information since.  Can anybody verify a crossed ax insignia for pioneers and give a date for same.  A source/footnote would be helpful also.

Thank you;

Michael "Books" Tatham
Capt. 5th Kansas Battery
Acting Arty. Commander, Dept. of Missouri
Title: Re: Pioneer's Insignia
Post by: St. George on May 20, 2006, 10:36:52 pm
General Order No. 53 - published in the fall of 1851 - created the chevron for Pioneer.

They were the first of the 'specialist's' ratings.

The up-dated General Orders of 1872 through 1902 didn't change their appearance other than to change size - the 1872 chevrons being larger than their predecessors.

Vaya,

Scouts Out!
Title: Re: Pioneer's Insignia
Post by: Grapeshot on May 27, 2006, 07:38:33 pm
The Pioneer insignia of crossed axes has been around since Napoleon's Army Marched out to conquer Europe.

The Pioneers are the original Combat Engineers.  Sometimes they are refered to as Sappers.  They were picked based on their stature as well as their strength.
Title: Re: Pioneer's Insignia
Post by: Dr. Bob on May 28, 2006, 09:31:12 pm
Howdy Grapeshot,

Pioneers were part of an Infantry Regiment.  One in each company, for 10 in a Regiment.

Sappers were troops of the Corps of Engineers.  During the War of 1812 they were called "Sappers, Miners and Bombadiers"  Sappers dug trenched to attach fortified places.  Miners dug under walls and Bombadiers placed the explosives to blow up the wall.  By the ACW the Engineer troops were called "Sappers, Miners and Ponteneres [sp?] for placing pontoon bridges.

In the Royal Engineers the are simply called Sappers.  Brit. Infantry Regiments had Pioneers too.  They were the only troops allowed to have full beards up to the 1850's, I think. 

Title: Re: Pioneer's Insignia
Post by: Books OToole on May 30, 2006, 12:20:14 pm
Actually pioneers were part of all arms of the amry.

A young artillery officer named Robert Anderson, had command of a pioneer corps during the Seminole War.

In Five Years A Dragoon, Percival Lowe tells of pioneers of the First Dragoons clearing a road for wagons.

Pioneers were chosen from the most robut and active men, one per company (=10 per regiment) with a corporal in charge.  In the linear tactical formations of the 18th & 19th centuries, the pioneers were in the ranks of the file closers.

Michael "Books" Tatham
Capt. 5th Kansas Battery
Acting Arty. Commander, Dept. of Missouri