At the outbreak of the Civil War in 1861, hundreds of little people from Aquidneck, a small isolated island in the Atlantic Ocean, enlisted in the Union Army. Some joined ordinary—that is, non-little people—regiments, but others formed an all-dwarf voluntary infantry: the 13th Rhode Island Infantry Regiment, organized at Providence, RI. This regiment would form the core of what would come to be called the Dwarf Brigade.
Anita Holcombe of American Digger Magazine recently shared her story of recovering a Jeff Davis Hat Pin from a Civil War site in Belle Plains, Virginia. With Anita’s help, we explore the hat pin, its origins, and the purpose it served. Let’s first start with a little background on where the hat pin was recovered.