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545th Military Police Company

1st Cavalry Division and Arctic MP Battalion

Scarves, Foulards and Ascots

A pictorial history prepared by CPT Sam Reinert

As of January 25, 2012


Throughout the history of the 545th MP Company it has been a common practice to demonstrate and exhibit Espirit-de-Corps by means of special or extra accouterments to the standard Military Police Uniform.  One of the many ways that the 545th MP Company did this was to utilize a Scarf, Foulard or Ascot.  Before we begin with the 545th MP Co, letís go back a bit for the history of the use of such items.



The earliest recorded history of an organized military unit to use a scarf were the Roman Legions and historians record that as in our modern army when various colors represented different branches of the service, so was it also  with the Roman Legions as shown here where red represented the Infantry.  These scarves were not only decorative and represented the branch of service color, but also helped with controlling perspiration or blood if wounded in the head.



Now we fast forward to the old US Army Horse Cavalry on the western plains where they wore a bandana or a foulard which is nothing but a large square piece of cloth or a very large bandana.  This piece of material was used to tie the headgear on in the winter or in a storm and could also serve as a tourniquet or temporary bandage until the regimental surgeon could get to you if you were wounded.  It was also very good to remove the perspiration from your brow when on patrol or to keep the sand, snow or sleet out of your nose and mouth.  Originally many different colors were in use by the old cavalrymen as there werenít many choices in the settlers store or the Regimental Quartermasters Stores Ėyou used what you could get or were issued.  Eventually as Cavalrymen are want to do Ė they all started using cavalry yellow for their foulards.  There are no photos or drawings available at this time but I am informed by some very old timers that this tradition was still in use at Fort Bliss, Texas in the old Cavalry Regiments even when they were issued the old OD wool service uniforms.  After donning the shirt and tie and before they would slip on the jacket, the troopers would wrap a yellow silk foulard around their neck and allow the shirt collar and tie to show, but the edges of the foulard could also be seen.  This practice was also in use much later at Camp Crawford, Japan and you will see a photo of this later on.






Here are two old Cavalry Troopers circa the Civil War Ė both wearing foulards around their necks and as you can see these were very large foulards.  As the wearing of this item of equipment was common practice we must assume that the early Regimental Provost Sergeants wore them as well.  There are dozens of definitions for the word foulard ranging from a printed piece of material which can be used in the making of both scarves and ties to a piece of heavy cloth used to keep the foul weather from the head and neck.




Here we have 1SG Seth Turner marching the old MP Platoon, Hqs Troop, 1st Cavalry Division at Camp Drake, Japan and you will note that they are all wearing a Cav Yellow Ascot upon arrival from Manila in Japan in 1944. Here is the definition for the word ďAscotĒ:  A manís neck scarf worn looped under the chin for sophisticated style. It was originally named after a racetrack, Ascot Heath in England.





Here we have two 545th MPís on foot patrol just outside of Camp Drake, Japan and they too are wearing Cav Yellow Ascots circa 1946





Here is another 545th MP in front of the Barracks in the parking lot at Camp Drake, Japan circa 1947




Here is a close up of CPL Floyd Schuhrke of the 545th MP
Company at Camp Crawford, Japan about 1953 wearing a yellow silk foulard as was worn earlier at Ft Bliss, Texas. Floyd is a member of our association.




545th MP, PVT Jim Price at Camp Drake, Japan circa 1944 with his yellow Ascot




Here is a great shot of several 545th MPís at Camp Crawford all wearing yellow scarves or foulards with their Ike jackets circa 1953 Ė 1054




Two unknown 545th MPs standing in front of the Arms room at Camp Custer, Korea circa 1963 with MP Green Ascots Note:  This is the only known time in the unitís history that the 545th wore green ascots as being a Cavalry MP Company we almost always wore Cav yellow




545th MPís at Camp Howze, Korea wearing yellow Ascots circa 1963



545th MP, CPL Mike Duka wearing a Cav yellow foulard with his fatigues in Korea circa 1950.  Mike is a member of our association.



Here is Mikeís entire squad in Korea with their Ma Duce.



545th MP PFC Ralph Miller somewhere in North Korea with a Cav Yellow Foulard 1950




CPL Norman Panzi in Korea with a Cav yellow foulard 1950




PFC Robert Goble wearing a green Ascot with crossed pistols at Camp Custer, Korea circa 1964.  Robert is a member of our Association and can you tell Ė he just got promoted to PFC in this photo!




The only known use of a white Ascot by the 545th MP Company with the Security Platoon of the 545th MP Company at Camp Howze, Korea circa 1963 and you will note that they also wore white brassards and a white stripe on their helmets.  This platoon was the escort and security for the Division CG and the Sergeant Major




545th MP PFC Jack Youngs with his patrol sedan at Fort Hood, Texas and wearing an MP Green Ascot





As most of you know, Fort Hood can get pretty warm and so was Vietnam; the 545th normally did not wear Ascots or Foulards on Duty at those two locations although we did have one desk Sergeant whose name I cannot remember who always wore an Ascot on Desk Duty at Phouc Vinh, RVN in 1969




Fast Forward to present day and youíll note SFC Carey Killea in her Cav Stetson and Yellow Cavalry Ascot with crossed pistols worn with her ACUís a little unit pride goes a long way.



Anyone having photos or historical information to add to this photo histories please send to:

Sam Reinert
545th Military Police Company Association
626 1/2 South 9th Street
Richmond, Indiana 47374 USA
(765) 962 4627 phone & FAX