Royal Navy + US Navy Branch Colours

"Branch Distinction Colours" were coloured stripes worn by RN officers, denoting the different specialities. The following contribution from Justin T. Broderick (justinb@SISNA.COM) was posted on MARHST-L, November 1998:

Shipwright officers received the silver-grey just after the Armistice, in December of 1918, along with electrical officers' dark green. At the same time all officers were given the "curl", along with the same cap badge, cap peaks and epaulet devices. Naval Constructors and civilian Electrical Engineers, when serving at sea, wore the silver-grey and dark green respectively, even after most branch colours were abandoned in 1955.

For the record, the R.N. branch distinction colours were:
Branch Colour
Navigatinglight blue (1863-1867)
Medicalscarlet (1863-present)
Accountantwhite (1863-1955)
Engineerpurple (1863-1955)
Instructorlight blue (?-1955)
Shipwrightsilver grey (1918-1955)
Electricaldark green (1918-1955)
Wardmastermaroon (1918-?) salmon pink (?-present)
Ordnancedark blue (1918-1955)
Dentalorange (1924-present)
Special RNVRemerald green (?-?)

And it may be interesting to compare the lesser-known U.S.N. distinction colours:
Corps Colour
Medicalcobalt blue (1869-1883), maroon (1883-1918)
Paywhite (1869-1918)
Engineerred (1869-1899)
Naval Constructordark violet (1872-1918)
Professor of Mathematicsolive green (1872-1918)
Civil Engineerlight blue (1881-1918)
Dentalorange (1913-1918)
Medical Reservecrimson (1913-1918)
Chaplainblack (June 16 - November 16, 1918)

While the R.N. used a line of colour below a single stripe, the U.S.N. colours showed on both sides for one-stripers.

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Last Updated: 21 December, 1998.