Vintage Regimental Pipe Major Photo Gallery - Over the years we have studied the changing uniforms and in insignia of the regiments pipers and Pipe Majors. One of the best source is the vintage photographs and postcards of regimental Pipe Majors. We thought it would be good to share some of these images in the form of a gallery, grouping together some of the finest pipers of the years gone by.
The pipe major is the leading musician of a pipe band, whether military or civilian. Like the appointment of drum major, the position is derived from British Army traditions. During the early twentieth century, the term sergeant piper was used instead. The pipe major is often assisted by a pipe sergeant, who has similar duties in the band and leads the band in the absence of the pipe major.
A Pipe Major's position is an appointment and not a rank. An appointee is required to have attained the rank of at least sergeant and to have successfully completed the Pipe Major's course at the Army School of Bagpipe Music and Highland Drumming, which is a 28-week long course. A Pipe Major may subsequently be promoted to staff sergeant/colour sergeant, warrant officer class 2, and rarely warrant officer class 1.