The Library of Congress never ceases to amaze me with its incredible archive of images. While going through a collection of newly digitized photographs, I came across this set from 1915 which documents a winter training maneuver of a New York National Guard unit in the Westchester County town of Peekskill, N.Y. Looking back, one could only assume that these soldiers ended up in Europe a few years later as part of the American Expeditionary Forces in the Great War.
Outside of the photos themselves being beautiful (the images here are scans from glass negatives from the George Grantham Bain Collection), the uniforms and equipment are also worth noting. The wool jackets, rough sweaters and those crazy looking hats (someone get Stormy Kromer on the horn to reproduce those bad boys) are all pretty ace, especially in black and white. Even the jodhpurs and boots are themselves pretty cool looking –though that type of look is all about a time and a place. Soldiering maneuvers in 1915, yes. Madison Avenue in 2012, not so much.