This plate shows a typical Confederate trooper of about 1863, before the most severe shortages of uniforms and equipment led to the virtual disappearance of anything resembling regulation styles. Though many militia units had good horse-furniture of pre-war vintage, there was little uniformity in the type of saddle used, varying from the U.S. McClellan pattern or its Confederate copy, the older Grimsley and Jennifer patterns, with numerous imported models and civilian saddles. A large number of Model 1842 and Model 1850 U.S. Dragoon bits were used, as well as numerous imported varieties, but harnessing was in most cases much simpler than that used by the Federals. Saddle-bags were often replaced by small canvas bags or sacks, and any available material served as saddle-blankets. Stirrups were either wooden or, more popularly, heavy cast brass, as well as numerous non-regulation varieties. Bosses and decorations (where they existed at all) were usually of plain brass, though some existed with 'c.s.' or 'c.s.a.' stamped on. Officers frequently used horse-furniture as plain as that of the other ranks.
The trooper illustrated wears a regulation shell-jacket with yellow facings, but with the customary 'slouch' hat replacing the kepi. Equipment is carried on the saddle-blanket, rolled greatcoat, canteen and cloth haversack - as was on occasion the sword. The trooper is armed with an imported 'Prussian'-style straight-bladed sabre with brass hilt, and a carbine; pistols were extremely popular and it was not unusual for a shotgun to be carried in place of the carbine.
In the Confederate army, each cavalryman had to provide his own horse, being reimbursed by the Government for every day's service. His mount was only replaced by the Government if killed in action; if the horse died of disease or the hardships of campaign, the trooper had to provide another from his own pocket. If unable to buy, capture or otherwise acquire a replacement, the trooper had to transfer to the infantry, by which system many veteran cavalrymen were lost to the Confederacy.
Virginia Cavalry. The regulation cavalry uniform consisted of a double-breasted frock-coat with yellow facings and trimming, and two rows of seven buttons on the breast. N.C.O.s wore yellow chevrons and 1 }-inch stripes on the outer seams of their light blue trousers; senior N.C.O.s were officially supposed to wear yellow sashes, but in practice these were almost nonexistent. The regulation kepi was yellow with a dark blue band. However, very few uniforms conformed to these regulations, the prescribed items being replaced by hats, shell-jackets, double-breasted fatigue-blouses or Federal-style fatigue dress, with or without facings and piping. Musicians were supposed to have yellow lace on the breast but this was seldom (if ever) worn. The corporal illustrated in this plate wears a uniform conforming almost exactly to the official regulations, except the rectangular belt-plate bearing 'c.s.' or 'c.s.a.' has been replaced by a plain brass buckle, a very popular style.
The guidon carried is based upon the first National flag, with a variation in the placement of the stars, six small ones being grouped around a larger one. Other variations existed, including one with seven four-pointed stars arranged in three rows. Many Confederate units carried individual, regimentally-designed standards as in the infantry; the Battle Flag was carried both as a guidon and as a
38 a) Sergeant, 1 st Texas Cavalry, 1861.
b) Private, Charleston Light Dragoons, 1860.
39 a) Private, 26th Texas Cavalry (Debray's Mounted Rifleman).
b) Private, Texas Cavalry, with Guidon.
c) Private, 1st Kentucky Cavalry Brigade.
40 a) Private, Georgia Governor's Horse Guard, 1861. b) Private, Southern Militia, 1860-61.
thirty-inch square standard by cavalry units.
The 1st Virginia Cavalry was formed early in 1861 under the command of Major James Ewell Brown ('Jeb') Stuart, a West Point graduate who had served as Lee's A.D.C. during John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry. By the summer of 1861 the 1st Virginia's strength had increased from four to ten companies. The regiment served with the Army of Northern Virginia throughout the war, performing invaluable reconnaissance duty as well as participating in daring raids into Federal territory; it served at First and Second Bull Run, Fredericksburg and Chancel-lorsville, at the great cavalry action at Brandy Station, and at Yellow Tavern, where Stuart, one of the finest cavalry leaders to emerge from the war, was killed.
The 1st Virginia was uniformed in 'Hussar' style, their grey shell-jackets being faced and braided with black. Unusually for regiments wearing this type of braid, N.C.O.s' chevrons were yellow. The fashionable long hair, beards and plumed 'slouch' hats gave the regiment a deliberately-acquired 'cavalier' style. Not all the companies wore black shoulder-straps; the regiment was formed from independent units including the Clark County Cavalry, Valley Rangers, Amelia Light Dragoons, Loudoun Light Horse, Albemarle Light Horse, Harrisonburg Cavalry, Howard Dragoons and the Sumter Mounted Guards. Known as 'The Black Horse Cavalry', the 1st Virginia began the war mounted totally on black horses, but replacements being scarce, this distinction was of short duration (the unit should not be confused with the Black Horse Troop, Company 'H' of the 4th Virginia Cavalry). Throughout his career, Stuart was noted for the black plume he always wore in his hat, like that of the 1st Virginia. The sergeant illustrated is armed with a Federal Sharps' Carbine.
38. C.S.A.: a) Sergeant, 1st Texas Cavalry, 1861. h) Private, Charleston Light Dragoons, i860.
Raised from independent volunteer companies in South Carolina, the 4th South Carolina Cavalry (Rutledge Cavalry) contained the Charleston Light Dragoons (Rutledge Rangers), as Company 'K'. The splendid, almost Napoleonic, uniform included the ornate leather and brass dragoon helmet, which bore the State emblem - the Palmetto tree - on a rosette at each side of the helmet, and on the front plate, which being a crescent-shaped device, itself repeated another of the emblems found on the South Carolina flag; the Palmetto tree was also stamped on the waist-belt plate. This magnificent uniform, however, was reserved for full dress occasions, being replaced by grey fatigue uniforms (issued in December i860) for active service.
The 1st Texas Cavalry (also known as the Texas Mounted Rifles or Partisan Rangers), though uniformed in a basically-regulation style, had black facings on the shell-jackets and the unusual cuff-flaps; as in many other Texan units, the 'Lone Star'
device was much in evidence. The ist Texas served in Fitzburgh Lee's Brigade; it should not be confused with the other Partisan Rangers (5th North Carolina Cavalry), or with Companies 'F' and 'H' of the 2nd Texas Cavalry, both known as the Texas Mounted Riflemen.
The sergeant is illustrated examining a captured Federal regulation-issue 'McClellan' saddle.
39. C.S.A.: a) Private, 26th Texas Cavalry (Debray's Mounted Riflemen).
b) Private, Texas Cavalry, with Guidon.
c) Private, ist Kentucky Cavalry Brigade.
Xavier Blanchard Debray, a graduate of the French military academy of St Cyr, was in the French diplomatic service until his emigration to Texas in 1852. A newspaper publisher in San Antonio before the war, he served as Governor's A.D.C. until commissioned to raise a regiment in Bexar County, with himself as Colonel. The 26th Texas Cavalry, also known as Debray's Mounted Riflemen, was uniformed and armed in a typically French fashion, the regulation cavalry dress having green facings and piping, brass shoulder-scales, and brass numerals '26' on the collars of N.C.O.s and privates. Musicians wore the usual pattern of lacing on the breast, but in the unusual green colour. It is not certain, however, whether this uniform was ever issued to any members of the regiment other than to Debray and his second-in-command. The 26th were armed with Mexican lances with yellow and blue pennons; these were a dubious advantage, and were replaced in October 1862 by Enfield rifles and revolvers. Debray, commissioned Colonel of the 26th Texas on 5 December 1861, rose to the rank of Brigadier-General by April 1864. His regiment served along the Rio Grande and in the Red River Campaign.
The Confederate cavalry greatcoat was double-breasted with standing collar and brass buttons, the cape long enough to reach the cuffs of the coat, the whole being grey in colour. It is doubtful, however, whether many such overcoats conformed exactly to regulations, a wide variety of styles and designs being used. The private illustrated wears the official pattern, and has the distinctive all-yellow kepi of the ist Kentucky Cavalry Brigade.
The Texan cavalryman wears a simple all-grey uniform, the yellow facing colour being borne only on the collar; the guidon is the 'Lone Star' State flag, carried in this shape by Texan cavalry units.
The Kentucky cavalryman is shown armed with a Deane and Adams revolver fitted with a Kerr patent ramrod.
40. C.S.A.: a) Private, Georgia Governor's Horse Guard, 1861. b) Private, Southern Militia, 1860-61. The Governor's Horse Guards
41 a) Private, Sussex Light Dragoons, 1861. b) Captain, Sussex Light Dragoons, 1861.
(Georgia) wore uniforms based on the popular 'Hussar' style, combining the volunteer grey with the black braiding common to several such corps, the plumed hat, and the unusual white cross-belt. The unit was armed with revolvers and sabres. The Horse Guards formed Company 'A' of the Cavalry Battalion of Phillips's Georgia Volunteer Legion; the infantry detachment of Governor's Guard became Company 'E' of the 3rd Georgia Infantry.
The other figure in this plate (taken from a contemporary photograph) shows the typical Southern militia uniform worn prior to the outbreak of war, and which formed the basis of the Confederate Dress Regulations of 1861.
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