Historical information

This vest was probably used in both China and Australia during the 1940s as a procession garment. It is linked to the Young Chinese League.


This vest is significant for its links to the Chinese Young League. The League was formally established on 4 October 1932 to to promote free social intercourse and goodwill among its members and their mutual improvement. Membership was open to all persons, with one or both parents or grandparents born in China. Wives of Chinese members were permitted as members with the same privileges. It was a significant social organisation for Chinese-Australians in Melbourne in the mid to late twentieth century.

Physical description

Child's apricot coloured tunic with blue, floral embroidered border. Circular panel with red Chinese characters adorn the front and back and the tunic itself buttons up on right-hand side. Garment has a square neck and is lined with red striped panel.

Inscriptions & markings

Chinese characters in the centre circle read: '軍' and above this in smaller characters '御林'. The large character means 'soldier'. The smaller characters may refer to the rank of the soldiers