Saturday, October 27, 2012

The Louisiana Tiger Rifles

From the February 2012 Daily Iberian (Louisiana) "LouisianaTiger Rifles talk scheduled for Saturday" by Jessica Goff.

Most people don't know it, but the LSY tiger mascot comes from the Civil War.  That would be in honor of the Louisiana Tiger Rifles, a unit made up mostly of Mississippi riverboat men and they had the reputation of being the toughest fighting men on either side.

On February 25th there was a talk on the group in Franklin.

Besides their fighting ability, the Tigers wore flashy French uniforms that included fezzes and pantaloons which also got them the name Tiger Zouaves.  Other units on both sides wore these uniforms.

The Tiger Zouaves originated in the French colonies in North Africa in the 1830s and the uniform became popular during the Crimean War.  Louisiana's French connection made it very popular in that state.

According to Dan Jones, "Being steamboat men they were known for their carousing behavior.  Many of them were boisterous Irish immigrants from New Orleans and they loved to fight and sometimes that didn't serve them well at camp.  They were wild."

The unit was established in 1861 and commanded by Major Roberdeau Wheat and really got their reputation at First Manassas.

Quite the "Fightin'" Group.  --Old Secesh

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