Some Examples of Filipino Equipment
By and large, Philippine troops relied on captured stocks of Spanish accoutrements for their basic individual equipment. The most commonly used patterns were, naturally, the Model 1886 and Model 1896 Colonial equipment sets. These two patterns were generally the only types issued to Spanish foot troops in the Philippines and were thus readily available to the Republican Army as spoils of war. Period photographs show these accoutrements being worn as both complete sets, as per Spanish regulations, or as partial components such as a belt and a single cartridge pouch or box.
Two Insurrectos wearing single Spanish Model 1886 reserve cartridge boxes as their only accoutrements. In Spanish service, the reserve box was worn on the center back.
Pages describing both the Model 1886 and 1896 equipment sets can be found in the Spanish uniforms and equipment section of this website. Several of the items picture on these pages are known to have been captured in the Philippines and, although of Spanish issue, may have been taken later form the Insurrectionists. Click on the links below to visit these pages.
On occasion, non-Spanish pattern equipment was issued. This generally took the form of commercial holsters and pistol cartridge belts or items manufactured by the army in the field. A few examples of documented Filipino equipment of this type are shown here.
Two Pocket Rifle Cartridge Pouch
Roughly measuring 7" x 4" x 1.25", this rather modern looking two pocket cartridge pouch is made of natural finish pigskin (not for use by Moros!) and has iron wire buckles to close the flaps. It appears to be of local Filipino manufacture and shows no Spanish influence in its design. The label was originally glued to the front of the pouch but has come loose. This pouch, along with several cartridges no longer present, was captured by Capt. William Lassiter, 16th Infantry at Tuguegarao on August 29, 1901, reportedly form a Philippine General named Don Carlos Palanca.
Commercial Pistol Cartridge Belt
A western style commercial revolver cartridge belt, probably American made, of brown leather with 35 loops for .38 cal. cartridges and an iron buckle that still retains traces of nickel finish. This belt was one of an number of Spanish and Filipino leather accoutrements brought back by a regular army officer. The tag was attached to the belt and was removed to properly preserve it. It reads; "(Cartrid)ge belt surrendered (Se)pt. 13, 1901 at Casiguran, Luzon, carried by Lieut. Basillio Palaming member of Emilio Aguinaldo’s staff at Palanan, Luzon."
All material is Copyright 2008 by William K. Combs. No portion may be used without permission.