Cockade Lapel Pin
In 1798, George Washington and Major Generals Alexander Hamilton and Charles Cotesworth Pinckney set out to standardize the dress and equipment of the United States Army. Insignia and other regalia would distinguish ranking officers. Inspired by British tradition, Washington suggested that all commissioned officers wear a black cockade adorned with a silver bald eagle, symbol of the new republic.
Per Washington's request, Secretary of War James McHenry, ordered five silver eagles for the former president in January of 1799. This eagle is likely one of four Washington received that February.
This 1/5" x 3/4" lapel pin with butterfly-style backing features the eagle of the new republic.