Monday, January 28, 2008

6th Cavalry - January 1862

The 6th Cavalry remained in camp and trained at Camp East of the Capitol throughout the month of January 1862. The regiment's assigned strength this month was 986 officers and enlisted men, 23 fewer than the previous month.

Of the 42 officers assigned, only 25 were listed as present for duty, including Assistant Surgeon J.H. Pooley. The regimental commander, Colonel David Hunter, was serving as a Major General of Volunteers, and didn't serve a day with "his" regiment during the war. Captain David McM. Gregg of Company E was absent in command of the 8th Pennsylvania Cavalry. Captain Brisbin of Company L was in Buffalo recruiting his company, with 1st Lt Henry Tucker also recruiting members for Company L in Cleveland. 2nd Lt Balk of Company D was on recruiting service in Philadelphia. Two officers, Major Williams and Captain Taylor of Company F, were absent serving on the staffs of general officers. Several were still serving in New Mexico and California with their previous commands and had not yet joined the regiment, and the remainder were sick.

The regiment had 944 enlisted men at the end of the month, but only 769 present for duty. A harsh winter was taking its toll, as 91 troopers were sick in the camp and an additional 12 were sick and absent in hospitals from Pittsburgh to Washington. This equates to a bit over 10% of those assigned. 42 were serving on extra duties away from the regiment, mostly as teamsters for the Quartermaster Department. 27 were in arrest or confinement, and three were on leave.

Ten new recruits joined the regiment from rendezvous during the month, but five were rejected for disability. Nine additional privates were discharged for disability. One private, Patrick McCloskey of Company C, was discharged by order of the A.G.O. on January 24, 1862.

Fifteen men deserted from the regiment this month. One sergeant, Thomas E. Mitchell of Company I, deserted in Washington on January 27th. The other fourteen were all privates and all deserted from camp. Company A had the most with four, C, I, K and M all had 2, and B, F and G each had one.

Six privates died of disease in camp during the month, the regiment's only fatalities. Michael Conway of Company F died on January 1st, Thomas C. Dill of Company E on the 3rd, Sebastian Schaffer of Company F on the 13th, and Benjamin Fowler of Company K on the 16th. Warner E, Bradish of Company C and I.M. Baxter of Company K both died on January 31st.

The regiment was a bit short of horseflesh, with only 858 serviceable horses and 49 unserviceable. The majority of the unserviceable horses belonged to Companies F (13), G (10) and I (11).

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