Scotch Brigade Bell Top Shako
An Officer`s Bell Top Shako to the British Auxilliary Legion 5th battalion Scotch Brigade who formed part of the volunteer force sent by Britain to support Queen Isabela II during the First Carlist War of 1835-7 and under the command of General Sir George DeLacy Evans.
The shako, which is probably unique, is modeled on the universal British infantry shako and retains a universal gilt rayed helmet plate with the royal arms of Queen Isabella II and with a thistle device below representing the Scotch Brigade.
The shako retains its original gilt chin scales backed onto leather and velvet and tied together with a ribbon binding. The red woollen pompom is a curious design with a red horsehair brush pretruding from the top. The pompom sits in a thistle holder and is attached to the shako via a section of whalebone.
The interior no longer has its original leather sweatband and crimson silk headband which have presumably been lost over time. The shako is in very nice condition with no splits or damage to the body of the shako and retains the residue of its original beaver knap. The leather crown and related leather bindings and peak are in equally good condition although there appears to be evidence of a repair to the crown of the shako just behind the pompom.
Given the relatively modest size of the force sent to support Queen Isabela II which numbered some 8500 infantry formed into ten battalions, it is reasonable to assume that this is probably the only surviving example of the British Auxilliary legion Scotch brigade in existence.