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  1. INTRODUCTION TO THE U.S. CAVALRY The United States Cavalry was officially designated as the mounted force of the US Army on the 3rd of August, 1861. The role of these soldiers was focused mainly on reconnaissance, defensive actions, pursuing and harassing enemy forces, and long-distance raids on enemy supply lines. These men were present in nearly every campaign during the Civil War and played a major part in the outcome of it. AMERICAN CIVIL WAR 1861-1865 During the beginning of the American Civil War, the Confederates enjoyed the advantage they had in their cavalry, as most southern men were accustomed to riding and shooting. A majority of the experienced cavalry officers from the regular army had chosen to side with the Confederacy. On average, at least in the beginning, your typical southerner horseman was superior to their northern counterpart. The Union started the war with five regular mounted regiments, and was initially reluctant to enlist additional regiments. This was due to the expense and the training needed to be an effective cavalryman, which could take up to two years. As the war continued, the value of a strong mounted force was eventually recognized, and numerous volunteer cavalry regiments were added to the army. It was the summer of 1863, during the Battle of Brandy Station that the Union cavalry was finally recognized as having comparable competence to their Confederate counterparts, despite the battle resulting in a southern victory. RECONSTRUCTION ERA 1866-1875+ After the war, previously Confederate states still housed a large number of heavily armed unreconciled former enemies who possessed a developed ideology of resistance. This ideology, white-supremacy, was put on a virulent display after the Battle of Appomattox Courthouse. For nearly a decade after the Civil War, cavalry regiments played a crucial role in suppressing vigilante justice and preserving public order. The cavalry was also charged with protecting American settlers, businesses, wagon trains, railroaders, and gold seekers from Indian attacks. They were meant to operate on the western frontiers of the rapidly expanding nation. As the borders of the US expanded, so did the territory covered by the cavalry. Soon, forts were set up from the freezing northern Nebraska and Dakota territories, to the scorching deserts of Texas and Arizona. 3D. CAVALRY REGIMENT, 'BRAVE RIFLES' “Blood and Steel” First organized in 1846 as an elite Mounted Riflemen Regiment that effectively combined the firepower of heavy infantry with the mobility of the cavalry horse. They were formed to safeguard the settlers on the frontier. The regiment distinguished themselves in the Mexican War from the battle at Vera Cruz, to storming the Chapultepec Fortress in Mexico City, earning their title “Brave Rifles”. General Winfield Scott provided one of the regiment’s oldest traditions with his accolades, “Brave Rifles! Veterans! You have been baptized in fire and blood, and come out steel!” Painting depicting Brave Rifles baptism by fire in New Mexico After the Mexican War, the regiment was moved back to the frontier where they engaged hostile Indians in Arizona, Texas, and New Mexico. When the Civil War started, the regiment was stationed along the Rio Grande River in New Mexico, and it was at that time that mounted rifle regiments were officially re-designated as cavalry, and the Mounted Riflemen Regiment became the 3rd US Cavalry Regiment. One of their notable accomplishments during the Civil War was their participation in the New Mexico Campaign. The 3rd Cavalry Regiment helped to stop the Confederate invasion by destroying the enemy's supply train. While in Lannahechee, the 3rd Cavalry Regiment was part of the Union forces that conquered the city of Saint Denis. In addition, it participated in the Battle of Citadel Rock, "the 3rd US Cavalry charged down Citadel Rock, slamming the (confederate) unit in its rear. It was an absolute slaughter. With an estimated 375 men from the confederate forces dying, while the Union only suffered 112 casualties." It also participated in the Battle of Scarlett Meadows, the final battle of the Civil War in the State of Lannahechee, where it charged down Dewberry Creek all the way to the South Field Flats, just outside of the town of Rhodes. The confederate forces, who were caught off-guard with the quick movement of the regiment, were forced to retreat and later on into a bloody last stand at Bolger Glade. Depiction of 3CR destroying rebel supply lines After the Civil War, the regiment fought hostile Indian forces on the frontier for many years, and it’s from this time that the unit draws upon its cavalry traditions. FRONTIER DUTY Following the war, the cavalry was overrun with commissioned officers and not enough enlisted men. Most of the enlisted men who served in the war were done fighting and returned home to their families. It was extremely difficult to recruit men for such a hazardous and sometimes fatal duty. Ranks of the enlisted ended up filled with ex-confederate enlisted, criminals, adventurers, and even ex-confederate officers who were now serving as corporals and sergeants. The army even turned their eyes and looked to Irish and German immigrants to help fill up the ranks. The cavalry was a good way to simply disappear and start a new life with few questions asked. Garrison life was incredibly boring, but it was a picnic compared to being on patrol or being on a campaign. Days were long and sometimes exhausting, so the men would often turn to reading, horse racing, boxing, and of course gambling in every conceivable form. They did just about anything to keep themselves entertained when not busy with their duties. A considerable amount of time was often spent taking care of the horses. Officers were well aware that the success of a mounted soldier demanded that the horses be in top condition, and so a Stable Call was sounded twice a day. Each horse was groomed and cared for meticulously, as every soldier from recruit to captain knew that a man without a horse, is a man who walks. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Officers from West Point or “professional officers” were those that had received formal military training from an academy. There was another group of officers, ones that had never attended a military academy but received their rank by being elected by the enlisted or been appointed by a governor. The practice of electing officers died out nearing the end of the Civil War, but many officers from that time remained in service. Generally, the army provided soldiers with horses, but some officers would use their own horse as their mount. This was also the case with firearms. More well-off officers were sometimes seen using their own personalized or non-standard issue sidearm. Many enlisted men who joined during the years following the Civil War didn’t have much of an education. Some may have had a bit of schooling here and there, but there were also many who were borderline illiterate. Training the enlisted received wasn’t the best. Their training regiments mostly consisted of the manual of arms, company and regimental drills in basic maneuvers, skirmishing tactics, and sometimes target practice. Much of what the men learned about combat was picked up from actual engagements. I Wanna Be In The Cavalry HOW TO JOIN This faction's primary objective is to accurately portray the every day lives of members of a Cavalry Regiment in the mid 1870s, amidst the height of the Indian Wars. Although this is a faction in which you can expect a healthy amount of conflict and action, our focus is on character development and creating interesting storylines, not just mindless battling. You can expect daily passive RP to take place around the clock, and we cover quite a large time-zone. For those interested in joining the faction, our recruiting methods are mainly in-game. We advise you to join us as already established characters with friends/family, associates and perhaps even past experience or education. When you come to join our faction, you will suddenly have a plethora of experiences to draw from, and your RP will not be limited to what you have seen during your time serving in our force. In some cases, we may offer the ability for an individual to skip the 'volunteer' phase of our faction, normally RPing as a transfer from another Company. This is normally restricted for older aged, veteran characters who want to draw from a fictional backstory to drive their character or unique concepts such as native scouts. In order to join you first must join our Discord, once you're there simply inform us that you wish to join and we'll let you know when we are in-game and how to actually participate in our roleplay.
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