The American Soldier, 1847
The War with Mexico soon saw the major part of the small Regular Army making its way through deserts and tropical forests far from home. Well trained and led,the Regular Army units bore more than their share of fighting from Palo Alto to the city of Mexico.
The horseman in the foreground of this painting of a column of General Zachary Taylor's troops on the march in northern Mexico is a dragoon. The yellow band on his forage cap, in contradiction to regulations, was worn by many of the cavalrymen. His distinctive dark blue fatigue jacket laced with yellow is the same as that adopted in 1833. Beside the dragoon is a first lieutenant of infantry in the dark blue frock coat worn by most officers in this campaign. The lieutenant is wearing the regulation dark blue, waterproof, cloth forage cap, and his rank is indicated by the single silver bar on his shoulderstrap to distinguish him from the second lieutenants, who wore no insignia on their shoulders/raps at this time. The light blue trousers with a white stripe down the side and the silver buttons on his coat proclaim his arm. In the background is a column of infantrymen in light blue fatigue jackets and trousers. These, with the dark blue forage cap, were the universal dress of the regular enlisted infantryman in this war.