Chicago Hussars

Carte de Cabinet, studio Brand, à Chicago.
Capitaine Edwin L.Brand, Chicago Hussars.

Ce portrait a été reproduit le 15 Mars 1896 dans le "Chicago Tribune" dans un article intitulé "Hussar Squadron of Chicago - Consolidation of the Chicago and Black Hussars".
On y apprend que le sujet est le "Capt.Edwin L.Brand, commandingTroop A".

Une planche publiée dans "Harper's Weekly" en mai 1893 montrent les Chicago Hussars coiffés d'un casque type colonial à crinière (un trompette ayant un colback), équipés de la sabretache.

La médaille qu'on devine ici sous la bandelore de giberne est également figurée ; atachée par une boucle sur laquelle est écrit "Durante Vita", la croix porte en son centre les initiales "CH", au sein d'une ceinture sur laquelle figure "Chicago Hussars".

"Organization, quarrel, Reconciliation.
In 1888, a body of Chicago men organized the Chicago Hussars as a miltary and social body. The organizers, being fine horsemen temselves and being admirers of the famous hussar corps of the Old World, were anxious to establish such a company of light horse in Chicago. For this purpose they appointed a comittee which made a careful study of the organization, uniforms, and equipment of the renowned Black Hussars of Prussia, as welll as the famous Seventh and Tenth English Hussars. From the information gained the troop known as the Chicago Hussars was organized.

A littleover a year ago some disaffected members of the Chicago Hussars combined with other lovers of riding and militray tactics and formed a rival cavalry troop known as the Black Hussars. The class of men enlisted, their uniforms, equipments, and mounts compared well to the Chicago Hussars, and they soon tok equal rank with the older organization. When this second troop was formed samuel B. Foster, now Captain commanding the Black Hussars, wrote a letter to his warm personal friend, Capt. Edwin L.Brand, commanding the Chicago Hussars, saying the loked forward to the time when the two troops could be united in a squadron formatin with Capt. Brand as Major. But the task was extremely delicate and looked nearly impossible ; still, the idea was in the minds of the leaders of the two organizations, and negotiations looking forward that end were constantly and quietly made.

The final consolidation came about naturally enough, neither side making overtures, but both being willing to combine. Committees had been appointed on the subject, but recently they were recalled and the entire powers to act for the Chicago Troop given to Capt. Brand, while the same rights were extended by the Black Hussars to Capt.Foster. The result was a most friendly and satisfactory agreement between the two, made after a number of meetings and a great deal of consultation and considerationof the subject. (...)"

Suite à ces discussions, la nouvelle unité se vit constituer de :
- Troop A, Chicago Hussars.
- Troop B, Black Hussars.
Le tout sous le commandement de Edwin L. Brand, Major.

Le même article nous parle un peu plus des Chicago Hussars :

"The Chicago Hussars have long been the crack cavalry organization of Chicago. During the World's Fair, in particular, were they brougt into especial prominence by the numerous military and State functions which took place. When President Cleveland opened the Exposition they were appointed as his special bodyguard and formed an attractive part of the procession from Chicago to the Fair Grounds on the opening day. Later they escorted the Princess Eulalia and several other dignitaries in their outdoor trips and took an important part in the Chicago day exercises. Their last service during the Fair times was at Mayor Harrison's funeral. For these services the City of Chicago made them its official troop, and presented them with a handsome standard bearing the city arms.
Their coal black horses and handsome uniforms have always proved a striking and attractive spectacle in city functions.
The present officers are as follows :
Captain, Edwin L.Brand.
First Lieutenant, H. Waldo Howe.
Second Lieutenant, M.W.Pinkerton.
First Sergeant, J.S.Townsend.
Second Sergeant, J.Horner.
Third Sergeant, Harry Kern.
Fourth Sergeant, Dan.B.Southard.
Color Sergeant, Morris Hecht.
Chief Trumpeter, J.R.Thacker.
The vacancy left by the promotion of Capt.Brand to Major will undoubtedly be filled on Monday evening by a general move up all along the line of officers."