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 Introduction | Cards 13 to 25 | Cards 26 to 41
Archived article from the October 2000 issue of Princely States Report

Military Uniforms of the British Indian Army


- Ron Rice

Introduction

Due to the interwoven histories of British and native India, one is bound to find odd bits of Indian States lore among common British collectibles. Case in point: while digging through an assortment of British cigarette cards of the 1930's and 40's, one of our colleagues stumbled on a complete set of 50 cards entitled "Military Uniforms of the British Empire Overseas," produced by John Player & Sons for inclusion in Player's Cigarettes. Each card is devoted to an overseas regiment under the crown, and 29 of the 50 cards document Indian and Indian States forces. The front of the card illustrates an officer or man of the regiment, while the back presents roughly 100 words of historical data.

Illustrations and text from the 29 Indian Army cards is presented here, followed by a list of the non-Indian cards that complete the set. Indian States enthusiasts should pay particular attention to cards numbered 26 to 40, depicting native Indian forces that fought beside the British on the Northwest Frontier, in the "Great War", and elsewhere.

  The following cards complete this Player's Cigarette card set. They are not shown because they represent British Empire overseas forces outside of India:
  • No.1 Cape Town Highlanders
  • No.2 Kimberly Regiment
  • No.3 Witwatersrand Rifles
  • No.4 Regiment Louw Wepener
  • No.5 The Rhodesia Regiment
  • No.6 The British South Africa Police
  • No.7 The British South Africa Police, Native Askari
  • No.8 Australian Light Horse
  • No.9 Royal Australian Artillery
  • No.10 Australian Infantry
  • No.11 New Zealand Mounted Rifles
  • No.12 Royal Canadian Mounted Police
  • No.42 Nigeria Regiment
  • No.43 Gold Coast Regiment
  • No.44 King's African Rifles
  • No.45 King's African Rifles, Somaliland Camel Corps
  • No.46 Northern Rhodesia Regiment
  • No.47 Trans-Jordan Frontier Force
  • No.48 British Guiana Militia
  • No.49 British Honduras Defence Force
  • No.50 Singapore Volunteer Corps
 Introduction | Cards 13 to 25 | Cards 26 to 41
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