Austrian Gendarme, 1912
The Austro-Hungarian Empire had a number of different law enforcement agencies, including three rural gendarmeries. One functioned in the Austrian aspect of the Empire, another in the Hungarian areas and a third in Bosnia Herzegovina. They were armed as a military force but with items that were not the first line as used by the Army.
Headdress – Cloth covered helmet with Imperial arms badge attached to the front. Additional decoration includes the spike and mount at the top and the metal chin scales fixed around the base. A leather chin strap holds the helmet on the head. Whilst Germanic in style this helmet was not a copy of the German pickelhaube, more in line with a summer helmet with small brim.
Coat – Over his standard uniform he wears a Dark green greatcoat, double breasted with two rows of 5 buttons down the front and two closing tabs at the rear. The red collar tabs are identifiers for this unit.
Equipment – The waist belt supports an ammunition pouch worn to the front. This has a decorative front flap. Over the right shoulder is slung a haversack to hold ancillary items needed on patrol.
Legwear – Dark blue grey trousers worn over ankle boots.
Weapons – 8mm Mannlicher carbine and bayonet, and a short sword. The latter
is also a symbol of the organisation and the individual.