1st Confederate Cavalry
This unit was also known as the 12th Confederate Cavalry Regiment. It was organized April, 1862; surrendered at Gainesville, Alabama, May 12, 1865.
The regiment was organized at Spring Creek, Madison County,
Tennessee, about April 1, 1862, by order of General Albert S. Johnston, by the
addition of four Tennessee companies (two were from Tennessee's 4th Cavalry Regiment.
) and two Alabama companies to Major H. C.
King's Kentucky Battalion. The Alabama companies were the original cornpanies
"H" and "K", which served only temporarily and were later
replaced by the two Tennessee companies shown. The original field officers were
appointed by General Johnston, but an election was held in the fall of 1862 at
which time H. C. King was elected colonel, C. S. Robertson lieutenant colonel,
and H. C. Bate major.
The regiment did outpost duty during the campaign succeeding
the Battle of Shiloh and the retreat from Corinth. Brigadier General Joseph
Wheeler, in reporting on his operations during the Kentucky campaign in the fall
of 1862 culminating in the Battle of Perryville, said the First Confederate
Regiment, under Lieutenant Colonel Robertson, served with his forces at times,
and did good service.
On December 10, 1862, the regiment, under Colonel John T. Cox,
with 313 men present, and two companies detached, was reported in Brigadier
General John A. Wharton's Cavalry Brigade. As part of Wharton's Brigade, it did
service with Major General William J. Hardee's Corps in the Battle of
Murfreesboro December 31, 1862.
On January 14, 1863, still in Wharton's Brigade, with
headquarters at Shelbyville, the regiment reported 19 officers, 156 men present
for duty, aggregate present 263, present and absent 476, but with only 140
servicable horses. It continued in Wharton's Brigade until May 18, 1863, when it
was transferred to Brigadier General William T. Martin's Brigade.
Major General Gordon Granger, U.S.A., in reporting on the
Federal capture of Shelbyville on June 27, 1863, and the pursuit of the
Confederate troops across the Duck River, which was then in flood, wrote:
"in the midst of their confusion, the rebel General Wheeler called upon
some of his troops to form and stop our advance. The First Confederate Cavalry
volunteered for this duty, and in endeavoring to perform it, saved their general
(Wheeler), who escaped by swimming the river, while the whole regiment, save
those of it who were killed, was captured by our forces, including the Colonel,
Lieutenant Colonel, and Major, and all of the line officers present." The
prisoners were sent to Camp Douglass, Illinois, where on December 26, 1863, a
report showed 292 prisoners present.
Captain C. H. Conner assumed command of what was left of the
regiment, which on July 31, 1863, was reported in Colonel A. A. Russell's
Brigade, General W. T. Martin's Division, Wheeler's Cavalry Corps. As part of
this brigade, it took part in the Chickamauga campaign. In the reorganization of
the Army of Tennessee after the Battle of Chickamauga, the regiment was placed
in Colonel William B. Wade's Brigade, Brigadier General John H. Kelly's
On April 30, 1864, at the beginning of the Atlanta Campaign,
the regiment was reported as the 12th Confederate, under Captain Conner, in
Brigadier General William W. Allen's Brigade of Kelly's Division. On July 10,
1864, still as the 12th Confederate, it was reported in Anderson's Brigade of
Kelly's Division, and continued to be so reported until August 31, 1864.
On that date, it disappeared from the Official Records
until January 1, 1865. Major H. C. Bate, in a history of the regiment in Lindsley's
says the regiment was detached from Wheeler's Corps at that time,
and assigned to special duty with General John B. Hood on his invasion of
On January 1, 1865, Major General Nathan B. Forrest directed
Brigadier General J. R. Chalmers to form a temporary consolidation of Holman's,
Biffie's, Wheeler's (James T.) regiments, the 9th Tennessee Battalion, the 1st
Confederate Regiment, and that portion of the 7th Alabama Regiment having horses
into four regiments, to comprise one brigade. This was the last mention of the
regiment in the Official Records.
Major Bate stated the regiment was
assigned to Brigadier General W. H. Jackson's Division and served with that
division until the surrender at Gainesville Alabama, on May 12, 1865. The
regimental books and muster rolls were lost with General Wheeler's train during
the last campaign in North Carolina.
Colonels-Thomas Claiborne, John T. Lay, H. Clay King, John T. Cox
Lieutenant Colonels-James Pell, C. S. Robertson
Majors-Moses J. Wicks, A. H. Chalmers, H. C. Bates
R. G. Grundy, Co. A. From Major H. C. King's 1st Kentucky Battalion.
James Pell (to Lieutenant colonel), Co. "B". From Major H. C.
King's 1st Kentucky Battalion.
M. Swann, Co. "C". From Major H. C. King's 1st Kentucky
J. H. Guthrie, Co. "D". From Major H. C. King's 1st Kentucky
C. H. Conner, Co. "E". From Haywood and Lauderdale Counties.
M. V. Gray, Co. "F". From Shelby and Henry Counties.
C. S. Robertson (to lieutenant colonel), Co. "G". From Hardin
George Carter, Co. "H". From White and Van Buren Counties.
M. J. Wicks, Co. "I". From Shelby County.
J. S. Tyner, Co. "K". From Hamilton County.
Felix G. Boyd
J. H. Husbands
W. J. Nanny
James U. Irwin
A. C. Bettis
T. S. Jackson.