SPC-A Commercial Publications: Kit Muster: Uniforms, badges & categories of the Australian Navy 1865-1953

Kit Muster: Uniforms, badges & categories of the Australian Navy 1865-1953
Kit Muster: Uniforms, badges & categories of the Australian Navy 1865-1953

by
John Perryman

This book is not a history about naval operations or ships. It is a history of our people, or more specifically, what they have been wearing since colonial times.

In the late 19th century the uniforms worn by Australia’s infant colonial naval forces virtually mirrored those of Great Britain’s Royal Navy, with only minor differences distinguishing the two apart. Since then, shifting social attitudes, new technologies, wars, and even religion have all influenced changes. It is a story of continuous evolution.

This history concentrates on the early part of that evolution beginning in 1865 with the passing of the Colonial Naval Defence Act, the formation of the Commonwealth Naval Forces on 1 March 1901 and the grant of ‘Royal’ title in 1911, continuing through to 1952 when Queen Elizabeth II ascended to the throne.

Throughout this period, uniforms and insignia have played an important part in binding Australia's Navy into a consolidated and readily identifiable entity. From a more practical perspective, naval uniform has provided warmth, shade and protection for our men and women who have served in diverse climates and conditions the world over.