To create an impression of a regular British line unit, with a documented history to the
various campaigns in New York, the 46th was selected because of the widespread service
across the colony of New York during 1758-63.The photos above are members of the New York
Company in their portrayal of the 46th Regiment of Foot.
The regiment was raised at Newcastle in 1741 as the 57th Regiment of Foot, ranked as the
46th Regiment of Foot in 1751.
In 1749 the Regiment was stationed in Ireland, where
they remained for eight years. Whilst they were in Ireland, the Seven Years' War broke out,
and the 46th were relocated to Nova Scotia.
During their time in Canada, the 46th were involved in several battles, including:
- Assault on Fort Ticonderoga, July 8, 1758;
- Assault and Capture of Fort Niagara, July 25, 1759;
- Assault and Capture of Fort Lévis, August 25, 1760;
- Capture of Montreal,September 8, 1760;
In 1762 they fought in the Caribbean, taking part in the following actions:
- The Capture of Martinique, 1762;
- Assault and Capture of the Heights of Morne Tartenson, January 24, 1762;
- Assault and Capture of the Heights of Morne Garnier, January 27, 1762;
- Capture of Fort Royal, February 4, 1762;
- Capture of Havanna, Cuba, 1762;
- Storm of the Moro Fort, July 30, 1762;
- Siege and Fall of Havanna, August 13, 1762.
Uniform Coat as per pattern w/ yellow facings, cuffs, and collar.
No lace tape. Coat is to be modified; lining may be removed and skirt cut short. Missy
Clark of Barkerstown Sutler’s, has agreed to build these uniforms. Color is Madder Red
and Yellow Gold fabric by Woolrich
Westkit: Madder Red as per regimental pattern
Breeches: Madder Red, French fly as per pattern
Hats: During the campaigns in North American, hats
were directed to be ‘cut’.
Hats worn during 1758 (Ticonderoga/Carillon) may
have been simple cut downs leaving a 2” brim.
Hats worn during 1759 (Niagara and later) may have been
cut to that of a jockey style cap ( light infantry only) painted emblem ‘ G R’ on
front ( B. West painting)
Shoes with buckles
Moccasins may be worn
Leggings/Splatterdashers: Brown wool legging as per
instruction (other colors or materials?) Brown material was issued while in Nova
Scotia, prior to Niagara, for the construction of leggings.
ARMS AND ACCOUTREMENTS:
a. Long Land Pattern muskets, cut to carbines (42” barrels)
b. Short Land Pattern muskets are OK
NOTE 1: Gage’s Light Infantry were issued with firelocks that ‘were cut
short and the stocks dressed to make them lighter’ as well as ten
‘riffled carbines’ for use by their ten best marksmen on the Ticonderoga
NOTE 2: the 3 light companies of the 44th, 46th, and 4/60th , turned in
their Long Land patterned muskets and were issued carbines w/o bayonets
at Albany prior to leaving for Niagara ( p. 88, Dunnigan)
NOTE 3: the men of the 46th’s light company had an apparent fondness for
French arms due to their light weight. (p. 88, note 469, Dunnigan)
a. Waist ‘belly’ box.
b. Shoulder box
Standard waist belt with bayonet carriage, w/ bayonet and tomahawk
NOTE: bayonets were not issued to the light companies for Niagara (p. 88, Dunnigan)
Standard pattern canteen, wool fabric cover, (red/brown/grey/green)
Blanket rolls, powder horns, ball bags, haversacks/knapsacks, may be
carried, as part of field/campaign impression
There are no known existing uniforms for the 46th Foot from the F&I period. We do
have the clothing warrants as well as the series of painting completed by David
Page 120, of R.R. Gales’s book, shows a Morier’s painting of a Grenadier of the
46th in the full uniform. The Hat company regiment coats would have been similar
in pattern. We know the facing color to be a yellow/golden.
Benjamin West’s painting , ‘General Johnson Saving a Wounded French Officer from the Tomahawk
of a North American Indian’ , gives us one of two known contemporary illustrations of British
Light Infantrymen. Of the two figures in the background the one on the left appears to be that
of a soldier of the 4/6oth Foot. The second figure may be a soldier from either the 44th or 46th
Foot. As both units worn yellow facings it’s difficult to distinguish to which regiment the soldier
belongs. The coat appears to be short and has no regimental lace. Also both soldiers are wearing ‘cut’
hats in the style of a jockey’s cap. On the front appears to be painted the letters, ‘G R’
Brigadier General George Augusta Howe’s, reforms for the clothing of the 80th Foot which was adopted
by the whole of Abercromby’s army. Lacing was removed, coat shirt cut short and hat brims cut down to
2 inches. Indian leggings were adopted the color was left to the discretion of the commanding officers,
but blue and brown being the common colors.
May 1759 orders are given to modify the light infantry uniforms which included: removing the sleeves from
the coat and placing then on the westkit, wings were added to coats like those of the grenadiers to extend
half way down the arms. I have not yet verified if the 3 Light Infantry Companies at Niagara adapted this
Considering this information, we can see several variations for the 46th interpretation. We must remember
that all coat were originally issued as per standing warrants called for and later modified.
- 1758 Ticonderoga : Lace removed, coat skirt shorten, and hats cut with a 2” brim. Indian style wool leggings. (blue/brown)
- 1759 Siege of Niagara: Lace removes, coat skirts shorten, hats cut to jockey style (LI) with ‘G R’ painted on front. Indian style wool legging. ( brown/blue?)
- 1760 and after: No lace, sleeves remove from coat and sewn on westkit, coat skirts shorten, possibly pockets sewn to breast of coat for balls and spare flints.
Final Note: The information present above is a compilation from multiply sources. As newer details become available
this page will be updated. If anyone has additional information which will enhance this work, please forward it to
me for inclusion.
Click here to get a PDF copy of the information.
Brumwell, Stephen; Redcoats, The British Soldier and War in the Americas, 1755-1763.
Cambridge University Press Cambridge, UK, 2002
Dunnigan, Brain Leigh; Siege-1759; The Campaign Against Niagara.
Old Fort Niagara Association Inc, Youngstown, NY 1996
Gale, R.R.; “A Soldier-Like Way” The Material Culture of the British Infantry 1751-1768.
Cambridge University Press Cambridge, UK, 2002
McCulloch, Ian M. and Todish, Tim J.; British Light Infantryman of the Seven Year’s War.
Osprey Publishing, 2004