This Second Lieutenant rank insignia is authorized for wear on the beret, which was introduced in 2001 to replace the Garrison Cap that had been issued, in one form or another, since World War II. At that time, the beret was standard headgear with the combat uniform, a status it also assumed with the Army Service Uniform (ASU) after it was introduced in 2004. While the beret is still the standard headgear with the ASU, it was replaced by the Patrol Cap in 2011.
The 2LT insignia is centered on the beret flash.

At The Salute Uniforms, we still offer the Garrison Cap for veterans who have opted to retain the Class A Army Green Service Uniform they wore during their time in service, as well as for collectors, uniform enthusiasts, and film production companies seeking authentic Mil-Spec uniform items.

The Second Lieutenant rank insignia of a single gold-colored bar was introduced in 1917 at almost the same time as the Garrison Cap—and both uniform components were birthed out of necessity. The need for a 2nd Lieutenant insignia was compounded by the flood of junior officers being hurriedly commissioned to lead the Soldiers of the American Expeditionary Force, which exploded from just 14,000 stationed in France in June 1917 to over 1 million by May 1918.

The Garrison Cap, on the other hand, was adopted from the French as a way to address the cramped living quarters AEF soldiers found themselves in. In addition to their helmets, American Soldiers were also required to own Service Caps and Campaign Hats—both of which took up considerable space and could be easily crushed even if stowed. What was needed was a hat that could be folded up and stored almost anywhere, even in a Soldier’s pack or pocket, and the French bonnet de police fit the bill almost perfectly, save for the fact that the ad hoc nature of the decision to use the hats meant the ranks were flooded with hats of a variety of styles. Because of where it came into use, the new hat was called the Overseas Cap.

The Army discontinued the official issuance and wear of the Overseas Cap after World War I, but in a few years it found favor among Air Corps personnel, and the very qualities that made it popular in the first place—ease of storage and care—led to it slowly being adapted by other branches as well. In 1938 the Army drew up new specifications for “field caps,” which were issued Garrison Caps throughout World War II. These caps became a part of Army tradition and heritage when they were added as an issue item to be worn with the Class A Army green uniforms introduced in 1956.

About us

As a certified manufacturer of uniforms and insignia, The Salute Uniforms considers it a privilege to provide the members of our nation’s military services with superior-quality apparel and accoutrements. We guarantee that every product we offer is made in the USA and meets or surpasses Mil-Spec standards. Browse our online catalog and discover how our tradition of excellence and commitment to innovation makes us your best source for military uniforms, insignias, medals, and accessories.


100% secure payment

Salute Industries Inc, proud maker of The Salute Uniforms.
105 Apache Drive, Archdale, NC, 27263.