Pioneer Uniforms 1871-1918

Since we found out a little bit about the history of Pomeranian Pioneers it is time to familiarize few details of their uniforms from the Imperial German period. 1871-1918.

Imperial German Pioneers

Dunkelblau Waffenrock’s M1867, M1895

The waffenrock for pioneer battalions in the second half of XIX century as indeed other formations (infantry and artillery) was dark blue (Dunkelblau). From a historical point of view these were the models 1867 and 1895. The blue colour did not indicate parade or special uniform. Blue uniforms worn in the XIX and early XX century were a daily, standard one used by German Imperial Army. Lining of these waffenrock’s was white and often stamped with the appropriate regimental number. It should be remembered that the Saxon pioneers had slightly different uniforms from the Prussian. Of course the wealthier soldiers often the NCO’s and officers purchased private uniforms. In such cases, the waffenrock’s were modeled on the daily uniforms but were made more pompous and not always in accordance to the military guidelines.

Characteristics of the pioneer uniforms (in uniforms model 1867 and 1895):

Red shoulder straps with a yellow number denoting the battalion number

Black cuffs ended in the Swedish style

Silver buttons

Black collar

The cuffs, collar, edge of the front flap and the rear skirt were trimmed with red piping

The picture on left shows back of the 1895 waffenrock with clearly visible rear skirt trimmed with red piping.

The Guard Pioneer Battalion (Garde Pionier Bataillon) had red shoulder straps without any number and as the only battalion wore “Litzen” badges on the collar and cuffs. This privilege had also all officers from rest of the pioneer battalions.