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AMERICA - MILITARY BRANCH & RANK INSIGNIA

US Air Foce Chief of Staff Visor Cap

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US Air Foce Chief of Staff Visor Cap

Unread postby Mark Costa » Fri Dec 07, 2007 2:21 pm

This is my first posting. I have always been intrigued about the visor cap worn by the US Air Force Chief of Staff -- the one with the "clouds and darts" around the band of the cap. I have never been able to find any information about it. I have some questions that hopefully someone can answer.

Who designed this unique visor cap and who was the first person to have worn it? Did Hap Arnold or Tooey Spaatz ever wear it?

It seems now that a couple of other generals have worn this unique cap without being the Chief of Staff -- most notably JCS General Myers and Vice Chairman General Ralston. The question is, did General Robert Herres also wear this cap when he was Vice Chairman?

Thank you for any help that you can render.

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Re: US Air Foce Chief of Staff Visor Cap

Unread postby Erskine Calderon » Fri Dec 07, 2007 3:58 pm

Mark Costa wrote:This is my first posting. I have always been intrigued about the visor cap worn by the US Air Force Chief of Staff -- the one with the "clouds and darts" around the band of the cap. I have never been able to find any information about it. I have some questions that hopefully someone can answer.

Who designed this unique visor cap and who was the first person to have worn it? Did Hap Arnold or Tooey Spaatz ever wear it?

It seems now that a couple of other generals have worn this unique cap without being the Chief of Staff -- most notably JCS General Myers and Vice Chairman General Ralston. The question is, did General Robert Herres also wear this cap when he was Vice Chairman?

Thank you for any help that you can render.

Mark Costa


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combination_cap
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Unread postby Mark Costa » Fri Dec 07, 2007 4:32 pm

Thank you for your reply but the link you listed does not answer any of the questions that I posted.

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Unread postby J.T. Broderick » Fri Dec 07, 2007 5:30 pm

Who designed this unique visor cap and who was the first person to have worn it? Did Hap Arnold or Tooey Spaatz ever wear it?


That's a great question and I also wish I knew more about it. Hap Arnold and Tooey Spaatz retired before the blue suit came in. They may have had AF blue uniforms for special occasions in retirement, I don't know. The first to use the special cap band in office was Hoyt Vandenberg, CSAF from 1948 to 1953. His successor Nate Twining also wore it as CJCS. I believe Generals Brown and Jones wore the cap as CJCS, but they had also both been CSAF previously.

I don't know about the vice chairmen, either.

The Commandant of the Marine Corps also has a special dress cap with gold oak leaves around the front of the white band. Peter Pace also wore it as CJCS, I don't know if the vice chairman wears it. This is descended from the commandant's blue dress cap in the early 20th century, which had a gold wreath around the EGA device.

Another interesting thing about those early USAF uniforms is that high ranking officers often had blue uniforms with rank insignia, wings and collar "U.S." all embroidered in silver wire. I have seen some of these up close and they are very fine work.

best regards,
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Unread postby Mark Costa » Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:17 pm

Justin:

Thanks for the reply. All of the Chiefs since Vandenberg have worn it. Although I have never seen a photo of Michael Dugan wearing it, he was certainly in office long enough to have had one before resigning. I am not sure if ACTING Chief Loh ever did though. I know that both Arnold and Spaatz had the blue uniforms and in fact Arnold was buried in one. But I was wondering if they too wore this very unique visor.

The non-Air Force COS such as Myers and Ralston started to wear this cap although they never held the AF COS office. I must assume because they were JCS and VJCS that this now qualifies one to wear the hat. That leaves only Robert Herres who was the first AF VJCS. I am assuming that if Ralston wore it then Herres did earlier as well. But until I can get confirmation I must keep searching for that elusive photo. I consider the AF COS visor one of most elegant caps ever wore by US military personnel.

regards,

Mark
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Unread postby Medic_in_Uniform » Mon Dec 10, 2007 10:41 pm

Justin,

the main image on the Wikipedia page for which Erskine provided a link (above), shows Gen. Twining wearing just such a uniform - all the insignia and embellishments are in silver bullion embroidery. A lot of detail!

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