With the uniforms of the Dutch army and the militia in particular many mistakes are made in history. These mistakes are copied endlessly in other books, even up to today. It seems that nobody took the effort to read the original documents, issued by the Dutch government in 1815. So, finally this is done here, on this website. After some years of research the final conclusion is given below.
The best possible picture is stated below.
Flank companies were looking the same except that the white plumes are tipped red and they had shoulder rolls (sometimes called wings), of blue with white stripes. The green tip of the plume was the official regulation right from January 1815, but it seems that not many batallions were using the green colour. Instead of this, many wear non-regulation items like green plumes, green heavy epaulettes with orange piping or simply colored shoulder straps. The real picture was probably a mixture of all this because at the end of 1815 an official army order says "that all non-regulation uniform items with the flank companies should be abandoned and only official items are now allowed".
In later years, around 1819, the flank companies were issued officialy with white plumes topped green and complete white wings. Some state that flank compagnies carry jager-horns for signalling, but officialy they carry drums, just like the rest of the troops.
The officer in the picture wears the wrong epaulette. Luitenants and kapiteins are wearing one epaulet only, but these are without any gold stripes. The 3rd figure from the left is a sergeant and the figure on the right is a korporaal (orange color around chevron is not official). What looks like red pompons are in fact orange cocardes.
The swallow wings with the drummer are correctly in colour; base colour should be the same as the colar, the piping should be in the button colour; that is orange with white piping (for line units; white with gold piping, for Jagers; yellow with gold piping).
The orange piping in the middle of the jacket, behind the buttons, in non-regulation.
The drum with the drummer should have red-white-blue tri-angles instead of only blue (see equipment page).
Far below you will find several pictures I collected over the year, many of them not correct.
For more reading about the equipment and ranks of the Dutch militia (and the rest of the army), see the background chapter or click on the links.
More picturesIn the pictures below some uniforms are not following the regulations in the official Recueil Militair from 1815 (original source).
Click on pictures to enlarge and download
With picture 1: The sergeants chevron should be silver and he should have a short sword with a orange tassel on a silver strip.
With picture 2: The cuffs (lining only) should be all orange.
With picture 4: The plumes should be white.
With picture 5: The plumes should be white; lining of epaulettes should be orange.
With picture 6: The lining on the trouser is not confirming the official documents.
With picture 7: The green epaulettes and green/red plume are not confirming the official documents, but indeed are stated with some eyewitnesses.
With picture 8: The sergeants chevron should be silver and he should have a short sword with a orange tassel on a silver strip.
With picture 9: The green epaulettes and green/red plume are not confirming the official documents, but indeed are stated with some eyewitnesses.
With picture 10: The corporal chevron should point upwards, the swords tassel should be red on a white strip. The soldier on the left shouldn't have a sword (only corporals and sergeants) and stripe on his trouser.
With picture 11 &12: The official documents state that the Sappeurs should wear colpacks with no decoration other then a white pompon (as picture 12). The wings are the same as with the flank companies, again as picture 12. Picture 11 is wrong in many details. The decoration on the ammunition pouch is not official.
With picture 14: The plume of the officer should be white. The officer is wearing a Line unit shako; which was indeed often the case. On his silver shako plate he has a crowned "W" (of Willem, the prince of Orange). He should wear a white plume, unless he is with a flank compagnie. The tambour of a flank company should have a white plume with a red (or green) top.
With picture 15: On his silver shako plate he should have a crowned "W" (of Willem, the prince of Orange).
With picture 16: The drum should have red-white-blue stripes. The wings should contain red.
1. Center company 1
2. Center company 3
3. Center company 4
4. Center company 5
5. Center compagnie attacks.
6. Center compagnie in kamp tenue
7. Flank companie 1
8. Flank companie 2
9. Flank compagnie 3.
10. Flank compagnie. Soldier and korporaal (rechts)
11. Center compagnie Sappeur
13. Kapitein (left) & Luit-Kolonel
14. Tamboer & Luitenant of flank compagnie.
15. Luitenant Kolonel.
16. Drummer. Centre company.
17. Soldier. Centre company.