Union Army of the Shenandoah
Twin Star Division Honor Guard
and Other Muster Awards

 ~ (Promulgated as an AotS Army Circular, November 30, 2013) ~

    The Army of the Shenandoah's monthly "Muster Call" provides the basis for a determination of the army's strength, health and morale. And while each officer's response to that call is considered his personal responsibility and necessary duty, it is also viewed as a stepping stone in providing a gateway to camaraderie and organizational pride! When a number of people perform the same act out of respect for each other, they've taken the first step in creating a common bond. That's an act worthy of recognition in any organization! And it is no different within the Army of the Shenandoah.

    The Twin Star Division Honor Guard award concept is a very simple system designed to not only recognize group achievement, but to foster it as well. It is named out of remembrance of the design of Major General Phillip Sheridan's red over white personal guidon contercharged with two, five-pomited stars. Sherdian replaced the normal company letter and regimental number on this older-styled, 1833 pattern flag with the two stars of his grade of major general (see General Sheridan's Battle Flag, Zaricor Flag Collection). Each time an entire division of "available" officers properly answers the monthly "Muster Call" with a 100% Muster Return, that division receives recognition as a Twin Star Honor Guard division of the AotS. An "available" officer means an officer who has been counted as "Present" from the preceding month. If only one "available" officer fails to answer the "Muster Call," the division does not qualify for the award.

    Each time a division qualifies for the award, it will have an announcement made to that effect within the Winchester Arms Bar sub-forum of the Union Army HQ Forum as part of the normal Monthly Award Parade. A second announcement will be made under the division's individual heading within the AotS's Order of Battle webpage. The announcement will read, "Twin Star Division Honor Guard" with the proper indictation of the monthly span and year. It will remain for a period of one full month until the next muster cycle has been completed. As a permanent reminder of such past awards, the division will also be authorized to display their 100% Muster Return achievements as a series of AotS Pins above the division's individual heading.

AotS Bronze Pin    AotS Silver Pin    AotS Gold Pin
    The AotS Pins will serve as a permanent, accumulated record of all of the division's 100% Muster Returns, no matter their order in time. The arrangement of the pins will be similar to the Roman Numeral counting system, with the bronze pins equivalent to "I," the silver to "V," and the gold to "X." Thus a division with seventeen 100% Muster Returns would display one gold, one silver and two bronze AotS Pins.

    When any AotS division in any corps manages to provide six, consecutive 100% Muster Returns, the officers in that division, at the time of the event, all become eligible by the discretion of the AC to receive the ACWGC's Union Army Meritorious Unit Citation Ribbon! In this context the MUC represents that the officer so honored was a member in good standing of the division at the time the distinction was achieved.

Meritorious Unit Citation
    The permanent display record of 100% Muster Returns will also be extended to the individual corps of the army, although these achievements will be significant of a much more difficult character! The device used to make suitable display of a 100% Corps Muster Return is the Union Army Staff Officer's coat button.
Brass Staff Officer's Coat Button    Silver Staff Officer's Coat Button    Gold Staff Officer's Coat Button
    The Staff Officer Coat Buttons will serve as a permanent, accumulated record of all of the corps 100% Muster Returns, no matter their order in time. The arrangement of the buttons will also be similar to the Roman Numeral counting system, with the brass buttons equivalent to "I," the silver to "V," and the gold to "X." Thus a corps with eight 100% Muster Returns would display one silver and three brass Staff Officer Coat Buttons.
Brass Cockade Eagle, One 100% Monthly Army Muster    Silver Cockade Eagle, Five 100% Monthly Army Musters    Golden Cockade Eagle, Ten 100% Monthly Army Musters
    A hatpin Cockade Eagle device will be awarded to the army for those rare occurrances when the entire quota of available, active officers answer the monthly Muster Call! The arrangement of the cockade eagles will also be similar to the Roman Numeral counting system, with the brass eagle equivalent to "I," the silver to "V," and the gold to "X." The awards will be dated as to the exact month and year of the event, and the army's designating flag will be embroidered each time with a minature copy of the devices. This award should not be confused with the Union Army's Quarterly Muster Commendation.
Brass Muster Shield    Silver Muster Shield    Gold Muster Shield
    The General-in-Chief of the Union Armies, General D. S. Walter, instituted in July of 2010 a series of Field Army Commendation Awards, which were approved for use by the Union Army Awards Committee. The two awards are issued by the GinC once each quarter of the year; one for that field army best displaying Excellence in Combat and one for that field army best displaying Excellence in Muster. Each award also allows a miniature display device in the form of a circular breatplate or shield for use on field army websites. The circular Union Shields will serve as a permanent, accumulated record of the number of quarterly Excellence in Muster awards, no matter their order in time. The arrangement of the shields will also be similar to the Roman Numeral counting system, with the brass shields equivalent to "I," the silver to "V," and the gold to "X."
AotS Officer Muster Ribbon
    In October of 2013, GinC and AotS Commander, General Jos. C. Meyer, authorized the creation of the AotS Officer Muster Ribbon, an award specific to each individual officer's personal muster record. The ribbon, the Officer Muster Ribbon (OMR) is awarded when an officer has answered six Muster Calls, the responses need not being continuous. For each six-responses given thereafter the ribbon is modified by the addition of star attachments. The arrangement of the star attachments will also be similar to the Roman Numeral counting system, with the bronze stars equivalent to "six reports (1 set)," the silver to "thirty reports (5 sets)," and the gold to "sixty reports (10 sets)." Thus an officer who has answered his Muster Call twenty-four times would display an OMR with three, bronze star attachments, the ribbon itself counting as the first six-report set, as shown above.
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Page designed and maintained by General Joseph Meyer
Last updated 14 November 2015