The 6th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry (also sometimes known as the 1st, Phifer's, White's and McNeill's Battalion) was organized in August 1861 at Pocahontas, Arkansas, originally composed of four Arkansas companies and two Louisiana companies, which were consolidated about April 20, 1862, into two Arkansas companies and one Louisiana company. On May 15, 1862, the battalion was consolidated with the 2nd (Barnett's) Battalion Arkansas Cavalry and formed the 2nd (Slemons') Regiment Arkansas Cavalry, pursuant to Special Orders No. 60, Headquarters, Corinth, Mississippi, May 15, 1862
The companies of the former 6th Battalion became Companies A-C and the companies of the former 2nd Battalion became Companies D-E-F-G-H of the 2nd Regiment. On August 18, 1862, the chronically-understrength Company F (formerly Co. E, Second Battalion) was consolidated into Company E (formerly C, Second Battalion), and Companies G and H were redesignated as Companies F and G, respectively.
The 2nd Arkansas Cavalry Regiment was captured at the Battle of Mine Creek on October 25, 1864, and apparently was never exchanged or reformed
Phifer, Charles W—Major.
White, David G—Major.
McNeill, Archibald J—Major (promoted from Co D).
Randall, James D—Assistant Quartermaster (appointed from Co. E).
Wallace, Robert N—Surgeon (appointed from Co. C).
Scott, S S—Acting Surgeon.
Johnson, John M—Acting Surgeon.
Petty, E D—Hospital Steward (appointed from Co. A).
During its brief existence, the 6th Battalion was assigned to Hardee's Division of the Confederate Central Army of Kentucky, and fought in the battles of Brownsville, Kentucky, November 20, 1861; Rowlett's Station, Kentucky, December 17, 1861; and Shiloh, Tennessee, April 6-7, 1862. As part of the 2nd Arkansas Cavalry Regiment, under Colonel William Ferguson Slemons, the former 6th Battalion troops established an impressive record under General Nathan Bedford Forrest. The unit served in the Army of the West and the Department of Mississippi and East Louisiana, and took an active part in the Battles of Iuka, Corinth, and Hatchie Bridge. In 1864, the regiment was transferred to the Trans-Mississippi Army and participated in fought in Arkansas, Missouri and Kansas. The regiment was assigned to W.A. Crawford's, J.C. Wright's, and W.F. Slemon's Brigade in the Trans-Mississippi Department. After fighting at the Battle of Poison Spring, the regiment participated in Price's Missouri Expedition.
The National Archive Index for this battalion contains 78 names. Rosters of the various companies may be found with the 2nd Cavalry Regiment.
Company A - The Monticello Cavalry - of Drew County, Arkansas.
Company B - The Drew Light Horse - of Drew County, Arkansas.
Company C - The Crittenden Rangers - of Crittenden County, Arkansas. The Crittenden Rangers was organized at Marion, Arkansas, in April 1861, composed mostly men from Crittenden County. The company enlisted in State service at Marion on June 3, 1861; and enlisted in Confederate service at Pocahontas, Arkansas, on July 29, 1861, and was assigned to the 6th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry as Company C. On April 20, 1862, twenty-five men of the Crittenden Rangers were transferred to the Helena Artillery, and the remainder of the company was consolidated with Company E, the Border Rangers of White County; and on May 15, 1862, the consolidated Rangers troop became Company A, 2nd Regiment Arkansas Cavalry. In January 1863, the company was transferred to the 3rd Arkansas Cavalry as Company E.
Company D - The Brierfield Rebels - of Carroll Parish, Louisiana. The Brierfield Rebels was organized at Providence, Louisiana, August 10, 1861, composed mostly men from Carroll Parish. The company enlisted in Confederate service at Memphis, Tennessee, on September 1, 1861, and was assigned to the 6th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry as Company D. On April 20, 1862, the Brierfield Rebels was consolidated with Company F, the Macon Cavalry of Madison Parish, Louisiana; and on May 15, 1862, the consolidated Louisiana cavalry troop became Company C, 2nd Regiment Arkansas Cavalry.
Company E - The Border Rangers - of White County, Arkansas. The Border Rangers was organized at Searcy, Arkansas, in April 1861, composed mostly men from White County. The company enlisted in State service at Searcy on June 5, 1861; and enlisted in Confederate service at Pitman's Ferry, Arkansas, on July 25, 1861, and was assigned to Solon Borland's 1st Arkansas Mounted Volunteers as Company E. In September 1861, the Border Rangers was attached to the 6th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry as Company E. On April 20, 1862, the Border Rangers was consolidated with Company C, the Crittenden Rangers of Crittenden County; and on May 15, 1862, the consolidated Rangers troop became Company A, 2nd Regiment Arkansas Cavalry. In January 1863, the company was transferred to the 3rd Arkansas Cavalry Regiment as Company E.
Company F - The Macon Cavalry - of Madison Parish, Louisiana. The Macon Cavalry was organized at Vicksburg, Mississippi, February 27, 1862, composed mostly men from Madison Parish, Louisiana. The company enlisted in Confederate service at Delhi, Louisiana, on March 6, 1862. Initially attached to the 28th Mississippi Cavalry, it was soon assigned to the 6th Battalion Arkansas Cavalry as Company F. On April 20, 1862, the Macon Cavalry was consolidated with Company D, the Brierfield Rebels of Carroll Parish, Louisiana; and on May 15, 1862, the consolidated Louisiana cavalry troop became Company C, 2nd Regiment Arkansas Cavalry.