10th Cavalry Regiment
Organizational Legacy
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"Dress on the Colors!" by Dale Gallon

Regimental Distinctive Unit Insignia


The 1st Cavalry Division, a major subordinate command of the US Third Mobile Armored Corps, is a 19,000 soldier, heavy armored division stationed at Ft. Hood, TX. As one of the two "on-call" heavy contingency force divisions of the Army, the First Team has an on-order mission to deploy by sea, air or land to any part of the world on a short notice. The following narratives, divided in timeline eras of major operational missions, describes the threat environment, tactical conditions, evolution of equipment technology and the strategic methodology employed by one of its subordinate units, the 10th Cavalry Regiment, to contribute to the successful missions and enhancement of the warring organization of the 1st Cavalry Division.


The mission of the 10th Cavalry Regiment is to deploy to a designated contingency area of operations and conduct full spectrum operations in support ith mission of its cognizant Brigade On order, redeploys and prepares for future operations.

Organizational Summary:

9th and 10th Cavalry Histories
This video clip summarizes the background of the organization and history of the 9th and 10th Cavalry Regiments. At the end of the Civil War, the ranks of the Regular cavalry regiments were thin indeed, as were those of the other Regular regiments. Of the 448 companies of cavalry, infantry, and artillery authorized, 153 were not organized, and few, if any, of those in being were at full strength. By the early summer of1866, this shortage had eased since many of the members of the disbanded Volunteer outfits had by then enlisted as Regulars. By that time, however, it became apparent in Washington that the Army, even at full strength, was not large enough to perform its duties.

When Congress reorganized the peacetime regular army on 28 July, 1866, it had taken the above situation into account. It also recognized the military merits of black soldiers by authorizing two segregated regiments of black cavalry, the Ninth United States Cavalry and the Tenth United States Cavalry and the 24th, 25th , 38th , 39th, 40th and 41st Infantry Regiments. Orders were given to transfer the troops to the western war arena, where they would join the army's fight with the Indians.

Cavalry companies accounted for 20 percent of the total number of company sized organizations. The Regular Army's authorized strength of approximately 57,000 officers and men was then more than double what it had been at the close of the war. The whole arrangement was remarkable because it was the first time in the nation's history that the Regular establishment had been increased substantially immediately after a war. Recruiting, to obtain the increase in man power force levels, began at once. Emphasis was placed upon securing veteran Volunteers before they left the service. The officers were selected from both Volunteers and Regulars; each candidate was required to have had at last two years of honorable service in the Civil War.

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Map Of The Western Frontier Regions
The new cavalry regiments, numbered 9th, and 10th, were organized under the same tables as the 6 already in existence. A regiment consisted of 12 companies formed into 3 squadrons of 4 companies each. Besides the commanding officer who was a colonel, the regimental staff included 7 officers, 6 enlisted men, a surgeon, and 2 assistant surgeons. Each company was authorized 4 officers, 15 noncommissioned officers, and 72 privates. A civilian veterinarian accompanied the regiment although he was not included in the table of organization.

On 23 November 1866, Army General Orders No. 92, expressly of effect from 21 September, announced the numerical designation, the field officers (so far as they have accepted) and the stations or headquarters of the new regiments of cavalry, also of certain new regiments of infantry forming under the same act.

On 09 August, 1866, with Congress having created the 10th Cavalry in law, the first step towards its creation in fact was taken, by Lieutenant-General Sherman, commanding the Military Division of the Mississippi, in a General Order No. 6, from his headquarters at St. Louis, Missouri. The order read as follows:

The first regimental report was rendered on the 30 September, 1866. It showed the aggregate strength of the regiment, present and absent, to consist of two officers, Colonel Benjamin H. Grierson, and Lieutenant-Colonel Charles C. Walcutt, and gave the number of recruits required as 1092. Colonel Grierson was reported present with the regiment, and Colonel Walcutt absent on regimental recruiting service.

The first commander of the 10th Cavalry is doubtless known personally as well as by reputation to most of the readers of this sketch. His raid through Mississippi in 1863 is the historic operation on which his reputation chiefly rests. It has placed him among the foremost cavalry leaders of the War, and seems destined, as it becomes better known and more justly appreciated, to add honor and distinction to his name. Lieutenant-Colonel Walcutt never joined the regiment, and resigned shortly after his appointment. The recruiting for the regiment was in the main regimental, that is, by officers of the regiment detailed to recruit for it. At the end of the year 1866, the 10th Cavalry consisted of two field officers, one company officer, and 64 unassigned recruits. It was still without a staff or a single organized company. For seven months of the new year the headquarters of the regiment remained at Fort Leavenworth.

The work of filling up the regiment went on but continued to make slow progress. This was due in the main to two causes, the want of clerical assistance at recruiting stations, and the high standard fixed for the recruits by the regimental commander. Recruiting officers were not allowed to hire clerks and had extreme difficulty in securing any among their recruits or the members of their recruiting parties. With a view to securing an intelligent set of men for the ranks the colonel had Captain Louis H. Carpenter, who was recruiting at Louisville, Kentucky, ordered to Philadelphia, PA., to open a recruiting station there.

Writing to Captain Carpenter, the colonel says, after referring to the captain's knowledge of Philadelphia: "I requested you to be sent there to recruit colored men sufficiently educated to fill the positions of noncommissioned officers, clerks and mechanics in the regiment. You will use the greatest care in your selection of recruits. Although sent to recruit men for the positions specified above, you will also enlist all superior men you can who will do credit to the regiment."

On 06 August, 1867, the headquarters of the regiment was relocated from Fort Leavenworth to Fort Riley, Kansas. The troops were posted at Fort Hays, Fort Harker, and other points along the Smokey River, Kansas, on the line of the Kansas Pacific Railroad, then in course of construction. They had been put in the field for the protection of the railroad as fast as they were organized. The strength of the regiment, present and absent, amounted to 25 officers and 702 enlisted men.

On 22 January 1921 the 1st Cavalry Division was constituted in the US Regular Army. On 13 September 1921, with the initiation of the National Defense Act, the 1st Cavalry Division was formally activated at Ft. Bliss, TX and Major General Robert Lee Howze, a Texas native from Rusk County and seasoned veteran of then Frontier Indian Wars, Spanish American War, Philippines Insurrection, Mexican Expedition, World War I and recipient of the Medal of Honor, was selected as its first Division Commander.

Upon formal activation, the 7th, 8th and 10th Cavalry Regiments were assigned to the new Division. With almost a century of service behind the oldest of its regiments and sixty five years of service for its youngest, the units that had already ridden and fought its way into the pages of history were organized into the newly formed divisional structure. The four regiments were now to fight side by side. Other units initially assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division in 1921 included the 1st and 2nd Machine Gun Squadrons, Weapons Troops, 10th Light Tank Company, 13th Signal Troop, 15th Veterinary Company, 27th Ordnance Company, 43rd Ambulance Company, 82nd Field Artillery Battalion (Horse) and the 1st Cavalry Quartermaster Trains which later was redesignated as the 15th Replacement Company.

Later, on 18 December 1922, the 5th Cavalry Regiment was assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division, relieving the 10th Cavalry Regiment. It would not be until 03 January 1933 that the 12th Cavalry Regiment, organized in 1901, would join the 1st Cavalry Division, relieving the 1st Cavalry Regiment.

The capability of the 10th Cavalry Regiment was developed in conjunction with the long history of the 1st Cavalry Division. It is the combination of the experienced training received by each dedicated member of the Team and adherence to the performance level and traditions of the past. Highlights of the many subsequent historical critical missions performed by members of the 10th Cavalry Regiment and the honors they achieved are summarized in the chapters that follow:

As of today, none of the 10th Cavalry Regiment units are assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division. Units of the Regiment, currently assigned, are represented by the following active units:

The above listing of 10th Cavalry Regiment active units and their brigade assignments is at its best - may be inaccurate. Visitor submissions of updated linage data is encouraged.

This folio of material highlights of the many subsequent historical critical missions performed by members of the 10th Cavalry Regiment, whose actions, operations and the many critical issues resolved over its 108 year history to meet the changing threat and the honors they achieved are summarized in the following sections:

Table of Contents

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Copyright © 1996, Cavalry Outpost Publications ® and Trooper Wm. H. Boudreau, "F" Troop, 8th Cavalry Regiment (1946 - 1947). All rights to this body of work are reserved and are not in the public domain, or as noted in the bibliography. Reproduction, or transfer by electronic means, of the History of the 1st Cavalry Division, the subordinate units or any internal element, is not permitted without prior authorization. Readers are encouraged to link to any of the pages of this Web site, provided that proper acknowledgment attributing to the source of the data is made. The information or content of the material contained herein is subject to change without notice.

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