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"An Education for Civil War Militia Cavalry: The ..." Topic


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346 hits since 5 May 2018
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP05 May 2018 12:24 p.m. PST

… Ringgold Cavalry Company in the Alleghenies, June to November 1861

"At the beginning of the Civil War, the US Army possessed only the basics to conduct military operations, standard infantry units pulled from garrison duty, artillery units equipped with artillery pieces little changed from the Napoleonic period, and cavalry units varying in title and purpose. The cavalry of the regular army consisted of two regiments of regular cavalry the 1st and 2nd , troopers armed with sabers and pistols for close order combat on horseback, two regiments of dragoons also the 1st and 2nd, units, which used horses to get from one fight to the next, and the 1st Mounted Rifles, infantrymen on horseback[1] . Scattered across the United States these units provided the only horsemen available to Union except for one particular independent cavalry unit, a unit, which trained as a Pennsylvania militia unit since 1847 and remained ready for action right up to the callout of volunteers on April 15, 1861.

In 1847, during the Mexican American War, the residents of Beallsville, Pennsylvania and nearby Washington County formed the Ringgold Independent Cavalry Company, named for Major Samuel Ringgold, an artillery officer mortally wounded at Palo Alto.[2] Never asked to serve in the war, the unit's troops elected to remain together at war's end. Providing their own horses, equipment, and weapons, the Ringgold drilled for years, replacing personnel as needed, and awaited a call to serve.

Initially serving as a regular sized cavalry company of seventy-four men, the men of the Ringgold Independent Cavalry Company served from 1861 to 1865. By 1863, the men formed the core of a cavalry battalion, the Ringgold Battalion. Ultimately, the unit formed part of the 22nd Pennsylvania Regiment of Cavalry. The units first six months of service as a company in western Virginia hills set the pace for the rest of the war. The Ringgold's years of training before the Civil War did much to insure they served well in the Allegheny Mountains, scouting on short and long range patrols or supporting attacking elements during major engagements…."
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Amicalement
Armand

Frederick Supporting Member of TMP05 May 2018 1:18 p.m. PST

Now that is very interesting – I have heard to the Ringgold Cavalry but did not know their history; thanks for posting!

Maxshadow05 May 2018 5:53 p.m. PST

Wonderful article. Thanks Armand

ScottWashburn Sponsoring Member of TMP06 May 2018 4:06 a.m. PST

My Great-great-grandfather was in a Connecticut militia cavalry unit before the war, but I don't think it was ever mustered into Federal service. My ancestor ended up in the 1st Connecticut Heavy Artillery and later the 16th Connecticut Infantry.

donlowry06 May 2018 9:13 a.m. PST

The cavalry of the regular army consisted of two regiments of regular cavalry the 1st and 2nd , troopers armed with sabers and pistols for close order combat on horseback, two regiments of dragoons also the 1st and 2nd, units, which used horses to get from one fight to the next, and the 1st Mounted Rifles, infantrymen on horseback.

The 1st and 2nd Dragoons were the senior mounted regiments, followed by the Mounted Rifles. (Arm of service color for dragoons was orange, for MRs was green.) In the 1850s the 1st and 2nd Cavalry were added (yellow, of course). Just as the War was beginning they were all designated cavalry and renumbered according to seniority, so that the 1st and 2nd Dragoons became the 1st and 2nd Cavalry, the Mounted Rifles the 3rd Cavalry, and the original 1st and 2nd Cavalry became the 4th and 5th Cavalry. Also a new 6th Cavalry was added. The 7th Cavalry of Little Big Horn fame (and the 8th) was not added until after the War (and later the 9th and 10th, the Buffalo Soldiers).

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP06 May 2018 3:19 p.m. PST

Happy you enjoyed it my friends!. (smile)

Amicalement
Armand

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