First, a little background on Corp Badges courtesy of John Billings in "Hardtack and Coffee", Chapter XIII. There seems no question that Corps badges originated with GEN Philip Kearny of the Army of the Potomac. According to Billings, GEN E.D. Townsend, then Adjutant General of the US Army, told the story thusly:
"One day when his brigade was on the march, GEN Philip Kearny, who was a strict disciplinarian, saw some officers standing under a tree by a roadside; supposing them to be stragglers from his command, he administered to them a rebuke, emphasized by a few expletives. The officers listened in silence, respectfully standing in the 'position of a soldier' until he had finished, when one of them, raising his hand to his cap, quietly suggested that the general had possibly made a mistake, as they none of them belonged to his command. With his usual courtesy, Kearny exclaimed, 'Pardon me; I will take steps to know how to recognize my own men hereafter.' Immediately on reaching camp, he issued orders that all officers and men of his brigade should wear conspicuously on the front of their caps a round piece of red cloth to designate them. This became generally known as the 'Kearny Patch'." This practice was immediately embraced by the men in the ranks, and it is said that straggling in Kearny's command fell dramatically after this badge was introduced. Subsequently MAJ GEN Hooker promulgated a scheme of army corps badges on the 21st of March, 1863.
Various devices were adopted to differentiate the corps, and within a corps different color emblems distinguished the various divisions. The 1st Division wore red, the 2nd Division white, and the 3rd Division blue. Generally, these were pieces of colored cloth about 2 inches in width and height sewn to the top of the cap or front of the hat.
The 14th Army Corps' badge was the acorn. According to Billings,
"Tradition has it that some time before the adoption of this badge the members of this corps called themselves Acorn Boys, because at one time in their history, probably when they were hemmed in at Chattanooga by Bragg, rations were so scanty that the men gladly gathered large quantities of acorns from an oak grove, near by which they were camped, and roasted and ate them, repeating this operation while the scarcity of food continued. When it became necessary to select a corps badge, the acorn suggested itself as an exceedingly appropriate emblem, and it was therefore adopted by General Orders No. 62, issued from HQ Department of the Cumberland, at Chattanooga, April 26, 1864."The red acorn above would have been the badge of the 42nd Indiana Volunteer Infantry Regiment who were assigned to the 1st Division of the 14th Corps in May 1864, immediately following the issuing of the General Order.
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