Neha Patil (Editor)

1st Arkansas Cavalry Regiment (Monroe's)

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Covid-19
Active  May 9, 1862–
Branch  Cavalry
Nickname(s)  Monroe's Regiment
Allegiance  CSA
Size  Regiment
1st Arkansas Cavalry Regiment (Monroe's)
Country  Confederate States of America

The 1st Arkansas Cavalry Regiment was a cavalry regiment of the Confederate States of America. Officially designated by the Arkansas State Military Board as the 6th Regiment Arkansas Cavalry, it was almost never referred to as such during the Civil War. It was usually called Monroe's 1st Arkansas Cavalry, occasionally the 4th Arkansas Cavalry, and more rarely the 1st Trans-Mississippi Cavalry. It is also found in the Official Records of the American Civil War as Fagan's Cavalry and Monroe's Cavalry. The Compiled Service Records of the men are filed under the designation "1st (Monroe's) Cavalry," Rolls 4 and 5.

Contents

Organization

The origins of Monroe's Cavalry can be traced back to two smaller units, O'Neill's 13th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry and Wheat's Squadron Arkansas Cavalry. Captain James McCarney O'Neill was appointed to command the 13th Arkansas Battalion on August 1, 1862. It was composed of three independent troops: O'Neill's (raised in Bradley County), Capt. Americus V. Rieff's (raised in Hempstead County), and Capt. Columbus C. Wolfe's (raised in Drew County). Capt. Patrick Henry Wheat's squadron consisted of two Prairie County companies: Wheat's and Raulston's. In September 1862, these units were combined with other independent cavalry troops and partisan ranger companies to form the 6th (1st) Regiment Arkansas Cavalry. The regiment was made up of the following volunteer companies:

  • Company A – This company was organized at Hickory Plains, Prairie County, Arkansas, on May 9, 1862, by Captain Patrick Henry Wheat. The company was composed mostly of Prairie County men. The other Prairie County company of this regiment, Raulston's, joined with Wheat's company to form a cavalry squadron commanded by Wheat as senior captain. Wheat's squadron was consolidated with Witherspoon's 13th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry to form the 6th Arkansas Cavalry on September 1, 1862. When Captain Wheat left the service in April 1863, Robert M. Barnes succeeded him as captain.
  • Company B – This company was organized at Warren, Bradley County, Arkansas, on May 12, 1862, by Captain James McCarney O'Neill. The company was composed mostly of men from Bradley and Calhoun counties. It was initially assigned to Witherspoon's 13th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry. Captain O'Neill was assigned to command the battalion, as senior captain, on August 1, 1862. The next month, the battalion was consolidated with Wheat's squadron to form the 6th Arkansas Cavalry. When O'Neill was promoted, G. S. Van Valkenburgh succeeded him as captain.
  • Company C – This company was organized at Washington, Hempstead County, Arkansas, on May 15, 1862, by Captain George A. Davis. The company initially operated as an independent partisan ranger company before being assigned to the 6th Arkansas Cavalry. In late 1862, about half the men of the disbanded Company I were transferred to Company C.
  • Company D – This company was organized at Washington, Hempstead County, Arkansas, on May 19, 1862, by Captain Americus V. Rieff, and enlisted in Confederate service on May 22, 1862. Initially assigned to the 13th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry, it became a part of the 6th Arkansas Cavalry on September 1, 1862, when the battalion was consolidated with Wheat's squadron.
  • Company E – This company was organized at Brownsville, Prairie County, Arkansas, on May 26, 1862, by Captain W. E. Raulston. The company was composed mostly of Prairie County men. The other Prairie County company of this regiment, Wheat's, joined with Raulston's company to form a cavalry squadron commanded by Wheat as senior captain. Wheat's squadron was consolidated with Witherspoon's 13th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry to form the 6th Arkansas Cavalry on September 1, 1862. When Captain Raulston left the service in April 1863, James W. Blanton succeeded him as captain.
  • Company F – This company was organized at Arkadelphia, Clark County, Arkansas, on May 8, 1862, by Captain John W. Hanson. It operated as an independent cavalry troop before being assigned to the 6th Arkansas Cavalry.
  • Company G – This company was organized at Plum Bayou, Jefferson County, Arkansas, on June 17, 1862, by Captain M. D. Davis. It initially operated as an independent cavalry troop before being assigned to the 6th Arkansas Cavalry. In late 1862, about half the men of the disbanded Company I were transferred to this company.
  • Company H – This company was organized at Benton, Saline County, Arkansas, on June 19, 1862, by Captain G. W. Brown.
  • Company I – This company was organized at DeWitt, Arkansas County, Arkansas, on June 20, 1862, by a Captain Young. It was composed of men from Arkansas and Jefferson counties. In the fall of 1862, it was disbanded, and its men were transferred to Companies C and G.
  • Company K – This company was organized at Magnolia, Columbia County, Arkansas, on June 21, 1862, by Captain Isaac L. Adair. It operated as an independent cavalry troop until it was assigned to the 6th Arkansas Cavalry.
  • Company L – This company was organized at Monticello, Drew County, Arkansas, on May 12, 1862, by Captain Columbus C. Wolfe. It operated as an independent partisan ranger company until it was assigned to the 13th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry. When the battalion was consolidated with Wheat's squadron, Wolfe's company became Company L of the 6th Arkansas Cavalry.
  • Colonel James Fleming Fagan was appointed to command the new regiment, with James Cade Monroe as lieutenant-colonel and James M. O'Neill as major. Fagan and Monroe had previously served together as colonel and lieutenant-colonel, respectively, of the famed 1st Arkansas Infantry. Fagan was promoted to brigadier-general a month later, and Monroe succeeded him as colonel commanding the regiment.

    Battles

    Monroe's Cavalry took part in the battles of Cane Hill, Prairie Grove, Fayetteville, Backbone Mountain, Pine Bluff, Elkins Ferry, Poison Springs, and Marks' Mills, in Arkansas; and in the many battles of Price's 1864 Missouri Campaign, including Pilot Knob and Independence, Missouri; and Marais des Cygnes, Kansas. The unit reported 13 were killed and 23 wounded during the Camden Expedition. The unit participated in the following engagements:

  • Battle of Cane Hill, Arkansas, November 28, 1862
  • Battle of Prairie Grove, Arkansas, December 7, 1862
  • Marmadukes' Expedition into Missouri, December 31, 1862, to January 25, 1863
  • Battle of Fayettville, Arkansas, April 16, 1863
  • Battle of Devil's Backbone, Arkansas, September 1, 1863
  • Battle of Pine Bluff, Arkansas, October 25, 1863
  • Red River Campaign, Arkansas Mar-May, 1864
  • Price's Missouri Raid, Arkansas-Missouri-Kansas, September–October, 1864
  • Never surrendered

    The regiment was operating in southwest Arkansas and northeast Texas at the end of the war. Monroe's Cavalry never surrendered. Much of the regiment marched south towards the Rio Grande, with the intention of crossing into Mexico and somehow continuing the war. However, upon reaching the Trinity River, the soldiers voted to disband the regiment and return to their homes.

    References

    1st Arkansas Cavalry Regiment (Monroe's) Wikipedia


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