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UNITED KINGDOM OF GREAT BRITAIN

COLOURS OF HIS MAJESTY'S MARINES  •  1755-1801

The origins of the corps that became Britain's Royal Marines lie in the seventeenth century. In 1664 Kind Charles II ordered the formation of a regiment of infantry for service with the fleet and on 28 October of that year the Duke of York and Albany's Maritime Regiment of Foot, 1,200 officers and men strong, paraded for the first time. Most of the men came from the London Trained Bands (militia), which had been mobilized in anticipation of war with the Dutch Republic. James, Duke of York and Albany was the King’s younger brother and he held the office of Lord High Admiral. Consequently the new marine infantry unit came to be known as the Admiral’s Regiment. The uniforms and colors of the Admiral’s Regiment were yellow. The regiment served in the Dutch wars but was disbanded in 1689 after the deposition of King James II, as  York had by then become. Subsequently various other regiments were raised for service as marines until finally on 5 April 1755 His Majesty’s Marine Forces, fifty companies strong, were established under Admiralty control. These Marines served all over the world, including North America during the American Revolution. A company of Marines under Major John Pitcairn fought with great gallantry at the Battle of Bunker Hill (17 June 1775); it was they who finally stormed and captured the American redoubt. 

The uniform of His Majesty’s Marines was more or less identical to that worn by infantry of the line: red coat faced white, white waistcoat and breeches, white or black gaiters, cocked hat or, for grenadiers, a bearskin bonnet. The colors were also of the Army pattern: the Union Flag as King’s Colour and a white flag with a canton of the Union Flag as Regimental Colour. Both colors bore a “union wreath” of roses and thistles, within which was placed a foul anchor, the badge of the Marines. In 1802 at the instigation of Admiral the Earl of St. Vincent, King George III granted the Marines the title “Royal” and the facing color was changed from white to blue. 

See also Heart of Oak and His Majesty’s Foot.
 

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED
GUIDON  •  511th MILITARY POLICE COMPANY

The 511th Military Police Company traces its lineage to the 1125th Military Police Company, which was constituted 12 November 1942 in the Army of the United States and activated on 1 January 1943 at Brookley Field, Alabama. After World War II service in the Pacific theater, the company was inactivated on 25 March 1946 in Japan. On  1 November 1970, the 1125th was redesignated  as the 511th Military Police Company, allotted to the Regular Army and activated at Fort Dix, New Jersey. The 511th is currently stationed at Fort Drum, New York, as a unit of the 10th Sustainment Brigade, 10th Mountain Division.

The 511th Military Police Company's campaign credits include Leyte (Philippines—World War II), Panama (1989) and Iraq (2006 and 2008-09). The 511th received the Republic of the Philippines Presidential Unit Citation for its service on Leyte and the Meritorious Unit Commendation for its service in Iraq in 2006.

The 511th's guidon is of the standard pattern for separate TO&E companies, with the Military Police branch insignia over the unit's numerical designation in the Military Police branch colors.

The soldiers of the 511th Military Police Company (including the daughter of the author of this site) deployed to Afghanistan on 11 September 2010 and returned to their home station on September 5, 2011. Their guidon will remain on display here in honor of the 511th's exceptional service during its Afghanistan deployment.

See also US Army Guidons of the Combat Arms.

THE STARS & STRIPES "OVER THERE"

CAMP COLORS  •  UNITED STATES ARMY  •  FIRST WORLD WAR

When units of the US Army were encamped in the field the regimental colors were kept in the tent of the commander unless needed for parades and reviews. For daily use camp colors were provided: small national flags, usually made of cotton/wool bunting, in the same proportions as the silk National Color but with no fringe. Their size varied but typical examples were 18 inches at the hoist by 24 inches on the fly. These flags could be hoisted on improvised flagpoles or mounted on guidon staffs. Though cheaply produced they were accorded the same honors as any other version of the US national flag and when rendered unserviceable by soiling or fraying were disposed of with due respect, usually by burning. Camp colors were ubiquitous in the Amereican Expeditionary Force that served in France in 1917-18.

YOUR HOST

                         

TOM GREGG

WAR FLAGS features selections from my extensive collection of GIF images. I also invite you to visit Twenty-Six Letters, my blog devoted to politics, current affairs and culture. I enjoy hearing from people who share my interest in flags of all kinds. Comments and questions about the images on these pages, as well as information about military and naval flags, past and present, are always welcome.

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SITE ESTABLISHED LAST UPDATE NEXT UPDATE
7 February 1999

5 July 2016

25 August 2016
WAR FLAGS © 1999-2016 Thomas M. Gregg