Mexican Army 1906

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Mexican Army 1906

Post  wfrad on Mon 17 Nov 2008, 5:11 am

Here’s an attempt at redoing one of Vinkhuizen’s cuttings. Not a particularly clear drawing so some liberties have been taken.
Now here’s a thing, Messico is Italian, Gendarme comes from the French for a gentleman horseman of the cavalry, while the Italian’s use is for the Vatican Guard or armed police. Anyway it appears that someone in Italy is missing the drawing courtesy of Dr Vinkhuizen.
Take your pick, I’ll just go for armed or military police.
For any Mexicans that may be offended by the chicken/eagle on the headdress, sorry, best I could do.
For any experts please feel free to correct at will.
[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc309/wfrad/Mexico1906Gendarme.jpg
Regard
WF

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Re: Mexican Army 1906

Post  buistR on Mon 17 Nov 2008, 5:30 pm

Brilliant WF! Though just to be small-minded and pedantic shouldn't the eagle be killing a snake (something to do with Aztec symbolism I think) Smile.

I would be interested to know just what role the Mexican gendarmerie played under President Porfirio Diaz. As noted in an earlier thread on this website the Mexican government maintained a briskly efficient corps of Rurales, which kept the peons in their place up to the revolution of 1910. As such they performed the same role as gendarmes, civil guards and carabinieri in France, Spain and Italy respectively. Presumably the Mexican gendarmerie were just to keep order among the Federales of the regular army - rather like military police in the British and US armies.

As you mention, a French gendarme was a member of a rather aristocratic cavalry regiment in the Maison du Roi (Royal Household troops) until the French had their revolution in 1792. Then the new Republican regime gave the vacant designation to their armed police - who are unlikely to have had upper class pretensions.

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Mexican Gendarmerie

Post  wfrad on Tue 18 Nov 2008, 5:06 am

buistR
Yes, I believe the role of the gendarmerie would be along the lines of the Italian Carabinieri.
Now as for pedantic and small-minded, my opinion is don't do it if you carn't be corrected or be put right by someone that knows. You are only being small minded if you wish to criticize for the sake of it.
As for the eagle killing the snake, the thin line below is supposed to be the snake. On the original the eagle [if that's what it is] seems to be erect not bent over killing a snake.
I couldn't even make out if there is a snake, so I just did the eagle erect and added a snake for good measure, thinking like yourself that there sould be a snake in the eagles tallons [I must adimit it's not a very good snake but I'm no Turner or McGregor so don't blame yourself for missing it].
Since it apears on the original illustration to be a standing eagle a little like the British Hussars, do you know if the first pattern eagles were of the same design as the later national eagle. If the early eagle's were bent over killing the snake what' the badge on the illustration?
Great eh! nothings ever staight forward.
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WF

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Re: Mexican Army 1906

Post  ChrisF202 on Tue 18 Nov 2008, 12:30 pm

This is the first I have ever heard of a Mexican Gendarmerie or Gendarmeria as it would be in Spanish.

According to this New York Times article from 1889, the Mexican Gendarmerie was a paramilitary force subordinate to the army that performed generic constabulary type duties such as anti bandit patrols, border patrols, etc

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9400EFDF173BE033A25750C0A9679D94689FD7CF
^ click "view full article" to see the whole story.

However, it looks like they confused them with the Guardia Rurale silent

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Re: Mexican Army 1906

Post  Sean on Tue 18 Nov 2008, 4:01 pm

Excellent illustration and excellent responses.
This is why I have set this forum up.
Thanks very much guys.
MORE, MORE, MORE

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Re: Mexican Army 1906

Post  buistR on Tue 18 Nov 2008, 6:40 pm

Thanks for the link to the New York Times article ChrisF - it is an excellent example of how much foreign visitors to Diaz's Mexico were impressed by the silver braided Rurales and other aspects of his rule which made for a secure environment - "for everyone but Mexicans" as one cynic commented. Even the bandits it seems were more picturesque than menacing - unlike "ordinary vulgar robbers" to quote from the NYT.

Getting back to the gendarmeria - the uniform skillfully reproduced by WF matches the general style of the regular army prior to 1910 and obviously they did exist - though probably as a separate corps from the Guardia Rurale. An interesting Mexican book "Cronica del Traje Militar en Mexico del Siglo XVI al XX" has contemporary illustrations of the military insignia of 1880 provided by the Defence Ministry archives. These show the eagle perched upright on a cactus growing out of a horizontal horizon (of course). The unfortunate snake, dangling vertically from the eagle's beak, is visible at close quarters but at any distance would be lost in the detail of the bird's body. So WF got it right. What fun this hobby is!

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Guardia Rurale same but different

Post  wfrad on Wed 19 Nov 2008, 5:44 am

It seems that Mexico followed the European habbit of having a number of organizations doing similar tasks.
About this badge, since most of the helmet plates and badges I've seen appear to have the traditional eagle, has anyone seen an example of the badge in "Cronica del Traje Militar en Mexico del Siglo XVI al XX" that buistR mentioned.
Rather than a seperate corps from the Guardia Rurale could they have been a section within the Guardia?
Nice link chis, don't know about the Robin Hood bit though, no mention of GIVING to the poor.

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Re: Mexican Army 1906

Post  ChrisF202 on Wed 19 Nov 2008, 8:37 am

Rather than a seperate corps from the Guardia Rurale could they have been a section within the Guardia?
That was one of the things that I was thinking ... sort of how like in the New York City Police Department the Highway Patrol Bureau, the Emergency Services Unit (SWAT and heavy/confined space rescue combined in one) and the Mounted Unit are considered like an elite unit and thus wear a slightly different uniform ex. Highway Patrol Bureau officers wear high boots, leather jackets, the "crushed" hat and have yellow stripes down their pants.

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Napoleonic Swat

Post  wfrad on Wed 19 Nov 2008, 11:01 am

Yes, like Special Forces have corps members retaining items of their original unit such as cap badge.
I would think the nearest British equivalent would be the Light Companies, Grenadier Companies and Riflemen before they became regiments in their own right. All wore different devices but were part of the parent unit.

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