the Netherlands

The Dutch Uniforms, 1941-1942


Dutch Navy Captain, 1940-1945


Dutch Warrant Officer, 1940-1945


Kapitein ter Zee, 1940-1945


Adjudant-onderofficier
in tropical uniform, 1940-1945


Petty Officer, 1st Class 1940-1945


Dutch Navy Ensign, 1940-1945


Petty Officer, 1st Class
Sergeant, 1940-1945


Luitenant ter Zee 3e Klasse
in tropical uniform
Similar uniform in khaki for fatigue wear, 1940-1945


Seaman 2nd class, Boatswain, 1940-1945


Leading Seaman, Boatswain, 1940-1945


Matroos 2e Klasse
in tropical uniform, 1940-1945


Kwartiermeester
in summer uniform, 1940-1945


Sargeant-Major, Royal Netherlands Marines, 1942


Aircrewman, ML-KNIL, Singapore 1942






Private of infantry, Dutch East Indies, 1942


Dutch straw hat


Dutch KNIL Private, NEI 1942*


Straw Hat



Note KNIL in Dutch is: "Koninklijk Nederlands Indisch Leger" i.e. Royal Netherlands Indies Army. Now the navy is called: "Koninklijke Marine" i.e. Royal Navy. The KNIL was purely from NEI-origin and the KM was and is from Netherlands-origin meaning that the ships and their crews came from the Netherlands and before the war often went back to Holland to be replaced by others, NEI-citizens were either drafted (as I was) or could sign on as regular crew-members also natives (meaning the present Indonesians), before the occupation of Holland this was much more economical because the personnel from Holland got higher pay and had to be transported back and forth to Holland, they also could go on furlough to Holland, I think it was every 6 years. After the occupation of Holland an officer training-institute was started in Soerabaja. By the way the Navy also had its own airforce called the Marine Luchtvaart Dienst (MLD) i.e. Navy Aviation Service. The reason I'm telling you all this, is that on several photographs you tie the navy and the army together. E.g. on page 3 you show a KNIL-sergeant-major from the Marines, now the Marines are purely a branch of the Royal Navy, so they had nothing to do with the KNIL. The man also wears a Navy straw hat, not as the picture below indicates a KNIL straw hat, the ribbon on the hat also reads "Koninklijke Marine" and was indeed only worn in the Dutch East Indies by the lower ranks, who had to work most of the day in the hot sun! I also was somewhat amazed by the Warrant-officer wearing a tropical helmet, I had never seen that, I wonder where you got it, isn't it a British Navy-officer? To make things more complicated we had in the NEI the socalled "Gouvernements Marine" i.e. Governments Navy ,they were also militarized but their main task was taking care of the waterways by buoys and checking the depth of sealanes and the lighthouses so that ships could safely go their way, although they also took action against pirates and smugglers. Now their officers did wear those helmets, but their shoulder-epaulettes were different, they had only stripes and no loop. Those helmets were also worn by civilians against the sun -- Frans Zanvoort, July 15th 2000.

Note * - The lightweight version of the grey-green field service uniform was worn in the tropics by NEI Army. His equipment include standard infantry equipment with gas mask on the chest and armed with Dutch M.95 rifle.

Uniform Index . Bibliography . Article List
Copyright Klemen. L. 1999-2000
Forgotten Campaign: The Dutch East Indies Campaign 1941-1942

logo