1st Cavalry Regiment
Organizational Legacy
"Courageous and Faithful"

  "Battle-Cry Of Freedom"  
Civil War Campaign Song
Composed by George F. Root - 1862
Adapted by Composer H. L. Schreiner and Lyricist W. H. Barnes

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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 1st Cavalry Regiment, to contribute to the successful missions and enhancement of the warring organization of the 1st Cavalry Division.

On 22 January 1921 the 1st Cavalry Division was constituted in the US Regular Army. Subsequently on 20 August 1921 the 1st Cavalry Regiment, the first unit assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division, was preassigned to the Division nearly a month before its formal activation. 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.

The early history of the organic units assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division was closely tied to the movement of people and trade along the Oregon and Santa Fe Trails. These routes, a result of perceived "manifest destiny", extended the western domain of the United States into the far reaches of a largely unsettled territory. More and more wagon trains, loaded with settlers, rolling west were being attacked by Indians.

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Map Of The Western Frontier Regions
By the 1830's it had become apparent that the rapidly expanding frontier demanded highly mobile troops capable of covering the vast unpopulated areas of the rugged terrain of the west, tracking down and pursue the Indians beyond their usual haunts. The roots of the 1st Cavalry Division are found in an answer to those who advocated a mounted military force for speed and mobility, yet trained and properly equipped to fight dismounted as well as mounted. In 02 March 1833, the US Regiment of Dragoons was constituted in the Regular Army and subsequently on 04 March, the Regiment was organized at Jefferson Barracks, Missouri. The unit was commanded by Colonel Henry Dodge, a former member of the Battalion of Mounted Rangers. Dragoon Lt. Albert M. Lea described Colonel Dodge as "a splendid man, soldierly, erect, with an eagle eye, but lacking in the amenities and grammar."

When the War Department created the US Regiment of Dragoons, it retained a number of the officers of the Battalion of Mounted Rangers. Among the commissioned staff of the Dragoons' were a number of experienced infantrymen who were to become famous as cavalrymen, Lt. Colonel Stephen Watts Kearny - 3rd Infantry, Lt. Jefferson Davis - 1st Infantry and Lt. Philip St. George Cook - 6th Infantry. However, the reorganization did not include any of the enlisted personnel. Instead, the Adjutant General, who was responsible for recruiting, sent the officers of the new regiment throughout the different states with directions to recruit an elite unit. The orders emphasized aiming for a better class of recruits than usual and for "native born" Americans. The Dragoons were flamboyant by any military standard. Long hair, colorful scarfs, facial hair and even earrings was adorned by these elite troopers.

In 1866, soon after the end of the Civil war, Congress initiated action to expand the number of cavalry regiments. The sound of the bugle and the cry of "Charge" sent the thundering hooves of the US Cavalry troopers, many who had former service in the Civil War, to oversee and protect the western bound settlers in an era when Indians roamed the western frontier and pioneering settlers clung to their land with determination. The 1st, 4th, 5th, 7th, 8th and 10th Cavalry Regiments (all eventually subordinate maneuvering units of the 1st Cavalry Division) clashed with the Sioux, Comanche, Arapaho, Apache and the Indian Nations during the Indian Wars.

As of today, the 1st Cavalry Regiment is currently represented by the following active Units:

The above listing of 1st 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 1st Cavalry Regiment, whose actions, operations and the many critical issues resolved over its 176 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.

Revised 05 Apr '12 SpellChecked