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Warrant Officers' Collar Insignia (Obsolete)

Warrant Officers' Collar Insignia (Obsolete) Branch Insignia Information

Collar Insignia: An eagle rising with wings displayed standing on a bundle of two arrows, all enclosed in a wreath, all gold color 3/4 inch in height.

The collar insignia is worn by all warrant officers in lieu of a branch insignia. The first warrant officers of the Army were in the Army Mine Planter Service, a service in the Coast Artillery Corps. This service was authorized for the Army by an Act of Congress on 9 July 1918. The insignia prescribed was the Coast Artillery Corps insignia, with a submarine mine of the same material. War Department General Orders No. 65, dated 20 October 1920, stated that warrant officers would not be permanently appointed in branches; they would be appointed warrant officers of the Army at large. Warrant officers at large could be changed from one arm of the service to another or from one duty to another at will, which virtually made them a special corps of their own.

On 20 November 1920, the Chief of Staff approved an insignia for all warrant officers, "an eagle standing on a bundle of arrows; all enclosed in a wreath." The warrant officers' insignia was prescribed for wear on both cap and collar in cutout form. For a brief period in 1943, the warrant officers' insignia was rescinded and the arm or service insignia prescribed. The insignia was rescinded on 29 April 1943 and restored on 20 July 1943. Although the symbolism was not documented at the time of approval, the eagle and arrows probably were taken from the Coat of Arms of the United States; the laurel wreath, used by the ancient Greeks as a symbol of triumph, often has been used to represent victory and achievement.

Branch Colors: Brown has been used as the color to represent warrant officers.

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