Americhrome

“Federal Standard 595—Colors Used in Government Procurement” has its roots in World War I, when in 1918 Bulletin No. 90 of the General HQ of the American Expeditionary Force established a color identified as “olive drab” as the official shade for tactical vehicles, though what exactly those words indicated was a subject of some confusion. In 1917, the manual for the Quartermaster Corps had defined olive drab as a combination of ochre and black pigments, though it did not mention a specific ratio, nor did it indicate which manufacturer’s pigments were best suited for the job.

Published: May 4, 2011
Length: 14 minutes (3,673 words)