Heraldry as we know it today had its beginning in the early 12th century during the period between the First and Second Crusades. To ensure recognition while wearing armor and a helmet that partially hid the face, enterprising knights began to use identifying symbols and devices called cognizances, which were painted on their shields and embroidered on the pennons (cloth banners) attached to their lances.
For additional information regarding the History of Heraldry, read the full chapter here.
On 06 May 1918, Brigadier General Foulois established the policy for insignia of aerial units, His declaration requiured that each squadron would have an official insignia painted on the middle of each side of the airplane fuselage. "The squadron will design their own insignia during the period of organizational training. The design must be submitted to the Chief of Air Service, AEF, for approval. The design should be simple enough to be recognizable from a distance."
For additional information regarding the design of Organizational Emblems, read the full chapter here,
In designing an emblem for an organization, the most important factors to be considered are the organization's history, its specified mission (such as reconnaissance, airlift, fighter, medical services, security, civil engineering, etc.), the proper symbols to be depicted in the emblem design, the placement of the symbolic elements or "charges" on the design field, and color selection.
For additional information regarding the design of Air Force Emblems, read the full chapter here.
AFI 84-105, Chapter 3, Paragraph 3.6. should serve as the authoritative guide in the processing of Air Force emblems. The information in this chapter of the "Guide to Air Force Heraldry" supplements the AFI.
For additional information regarding processing of Air Force Emblems, read the full chapter here.
1st Cavalry Division Shoulder Sleeve Insignia
The United States Army Shoulder Sleeve Insignia (SSI) or shoulder patch is a cloth heraldic device that uniquely identifies each major US Army formation. The Shoulder Sleeve Insignia is worn on the left upper arm, just below the shoulder seam of the uniform on all but the Army Combat Uniform (ACU). On the Army Combat Uniform the Shoulder Sleeve Insignia is attached to a Velcro backing and is then attached, centered on a rectangle of Velcro on the arm.
Those soldiers who are combat veterans are authorized permanent wear of their Shoulder Sleeve Insignia, earned during combat, on their right shoulder. This shoulder sleeve insignia recognizes "former wartime service" and is frequently called a "combat patch". The Shoulder Sleeve Insignia currently issued in four basic color combinations:
The Shoulder Sleeve Insignia (SSI) of the 1st Cavalry Division has a history as colorful as its design, reflecting the proud heritage of the United States Cavalry in a timeless manner.
The insignia selected for the First Team patch was designed by Colonel and Mrs. Ben Dorcy. The Colonel was then commander of the 7th Cavalry Regiment at Fort Bliss, Texas. Mrs. Dorcy related that the combination of the golden sunset at Fort Bliss and the traditional colors of the Cavalry; blue and yellow, were a great influence on the background color and the insignia. The choice of the horse's head for the insignia was made by the family after they observed a mounted trooper ride by their home on a beautiful blue-black thoroughbred. Later, to improve visibility, the color scheme was modified replacing the blue for black, the symbolic color of iron and armor.
On a "sunset" yellow triangular Norman Shield with rounded corners 5 1/4 inches in height, a black diagonal stripe extends over the shield from upper left to the lower right. In the upper right, a black horse's head cut off diagonally at the neck, appears within 1/8 inches of an Army Green border. The traditional Cavalry color of yellow and the horse's head is symbolic of the original organizational structure of the Cavalry. The color black is symbolic of iron, alluding to the organizational transition from mounted horses to tanks and heavy armor. The black stripe, in heraldry termed a "Sable Bend", represents a "baldric" (a standard Army issue belt worn over the right shoulder to the opposite hip - sometimes referred to as a "Sam Browne belt") which retains either a scabbard which sheaths the trooper's saber or revolver holster.
1st Cavalry Division Combat Shoulder Sleeve Insignia
During the Vietnam engagements, the "sunset yellow" field of the patch
was changed to a subdued Olive Drab (OD) green/black for the Battle
Dress Uniform (BDU) in order to minimize targeting of personnel. For
operations in desert environments, the field of the patch was again
changed to a tan (Khaki) color and the emblazoned, "Sable" black
charge elements was changed to saddle brown (Spice) so that the
contrast against the Desert Camouflage Uniform (DCU) was minimized.
More recently, in the deployment to Iraq and with the introduction of
new Army Combat Uniform (ACU), field of the patch was changed to
"Foliage/Green" and the charge elements were changed to Gray.
The 1st Cavalry Division Combat Patch is a "mirror image" of the Division patch in that the silhouette of the horse head and diagonal line across the gold background was reversed so it points forward when worn on the right arm of the uniform. It is the same concept as utilized to display the US flag when worn on the right arm, in that the field of stars of the flag is positioned in the upper right-hand corner of the patch. It may look backwards, but the flag billowing toward the back of a soldier indicates he is always advancing, never retreating.
1st Cavalry Division Combat Distinctive Service Identification Badge
Recently, the official status of the "reversed patch" has come into
question and currently the combat patch has reverted to the original
patch design (not reversed). Meantime, those who were issued the
"reversed design", proudly wear them on their uniforms.
Description: The new insignia design currently authorized by the Institute of Heraldry is a gold color metal and enamel device 2 inches (5.08 cm) in height embodying a design similar to that of the shoulder sleeve insignia.
1st Cavalry Division Shoulder Sleeve Insignia Design
Otherwise, other than the mirrored (reversed) image for combat
operations the patch has not changed in way from the original design
and shape. Occasionally, an unauthorized supplier of the 1st Cavalry
patch makes a design that does not conform with the geometry of the
patch design and measures are taken to remove it from the market. The
design, as authorized by the Institute of Heraldry, is shown below:
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Revised 10 Sep '11 SpellChecked