My name is Jacob Herr; I am a dependent of a Union Sergeant who served with the 14th Illinois Cavalry.
I would like to acquire a better understanding of the hats worn by the union cavalry during this period since the photos I find on google show cavalrymen wearing different styles of hats (Kepi, Hardee, Slouch, or what appears to be hats which mimic the ones seen in the later Indian Wars and Western Expansion). As a sergeant in the Union Cavalry, what were the rules and regulations (if any) in terms of hat wear? Were soldiers given a certain hat upon enlistment and then given the chance to buy/wear a different one of their liking in combat? Was there a certain hat recommended for presentation/photographs? Or did the hats vary by rank?
Any information provided will be most helpful.