10th Kentucky Cavalry regimental history

The following passage is excerpted from The Union Regiments of Kentucky, by Thomas Speed (published 1897, by the Courier-Journal Job Printing Company, Louisville, Kentucky). It has long been out of print, and I have not even been able to find references to it in Amazon's or Barnes & Noble's websites. I was able to find a copy at the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County; check your local library for a copy.

I also have any alternate version of this regimental history (by another author) available at this link.

[Author's Note: In the pages that follow, I have attempted to copy Speed's listing of names as accurately as possible; however, there may be misspellings or other errors in rank of which I (or Speed) am unaware. The only change I have deliberately made to his lists is that I have attempted to alphabetize any list of names with multiple individuals -- such as the list of Privates in each company.]

The Union Regiments of Kentucky

Tenth Kentucky Cavalry

The 10th Ky. Cavalry was raised by Col. Joshua Tevis, and organized at Maysville during the summer of 1862. That section of the state had already put six infantry regiments in the field. In July, August and September the 10th was at Covington. At that time the invasion of Kentucky by Gens. Bragg, Kirby Smith and Humphrey Marshall occurred, and the 10th was with the advance, which protected the country about Covington. It did not encounter the enemy prior to the battle of Perryville. After that battle, October 8th, the Confederates retiring from Kentucky, the 10th participated in the pursuit, following Gen. Humphrey Marshall's men through the mountains, capturing prisoners, horses and arms. It remained on duty in Kentucky during the principal part of its service, though in the work of driving the enemy from the state it once entered Tennessee and was once in Virginia. The 10th was employed in the latter part of the year 1862 by battalions. The officers commanding these battalions were Maj. John Mason Brown, Maj. Wm. A. Doniphan, Maj. James M. Taylor, Maj. James L Foley.

December 25, 1862, one battalion under Maj. John Mason Brown, went on an expedition through London and Barboursville to Big Creek Gap, and engaged in numerous skirmishes. In connection with this movement another battalion of the 10th, under Maj. Foley, was sent to Williamsburg. It proceeded on to Perkin's Mill, in Tennessee, when it encountered the enemy, and had a sharp fight with complete success, capturing fifty-one prisoners, eighty horses and two hundred muskets. Maj. Foley pursued the enemy some distance, and returning, joined the battalion under Maj. Brown, at Barboursville. Returning to the central part of Kentucky the regiment continued in active service through the winter and spring of 1863, operating from the borders of Virginia to Somerset. During this time it was commanded by Col. Charles J. Walker and Lieut.-Col. Maltby.

In the spring of 1863 Kentucky was visited by Confederate Cavalry in different places. March 5th Col. Cluke's command crossed Cumberland river at Stigall's Ferry below Somerset, and made its way to Richmond, Winchester, Mt. Sterling and other points. At the same time Gen. Pegram came into the state as far as Danville to obtain beef cattle for the Confederate army, as he says in his report. Pegram retired to Somerset upon the approach of a Federal force under Gen. Gilmore, and March 30th was completely defeated at Dutton's Hill, and driven out of the state. The 10th Cavalry was engaged in opposing Col. Cluke. It advanced from Crab Orchard, and skirmished at Lancaster. Then, pursuing on, it encountered Cluke's men at a great many points. Among them was a fight about half way from Winchester to Mt. Sterling where, as the reports say, Maj. Brown checked a fierce attack, and the 44th Ohio coming up the enemy fled. In this pursuit of Cluke the 10th marched one hundred and thirty-five miles. At one time Cluke, being in Winchester, was charged and driven out; then by feigning to go to Paris he directed the Federal forces in that direction, and returned to Mt. Sterling where he fell upon a portion of the 10th under Capt. Ratcliffe, who defended himself from houses. Cluke resorted to the torch, and after burning the place captured Ratcliffe and parolled [sic] him and his men. March 28th the 10th, cooperating with a force under Col. (afterward Gen.) Sanders, of the 5th Ky. Cavalry, succeeded in driving Col. Cluke to Virginia. In these operations Col. John Mason Brown reports Cluke's force at eight hundred men.

In April, the 10th was at Louisa. In the organization of June 30, 1863, the 10th was under Maj. John Mason Brown, in Cannon's brigade of Gen. Julius White's division. In July it was in Gen. Carter's division, and under command of Lieut.-Col. Maltby and Maj. Brown. It was a portion of the 10th, under Maj. Brown, which captured Gen. Humphrey Marshall's "artillery." Col. Cluke mentions this in his report of his capture and burning of Mt. Sterling. After telling how he moved off in the direction of Owingsville, because he learned a large force was advancing from Winchester, he adds: "Gen. Marshall is in forty miles of this place moving on with sixteen hundred cavalry. He lost his artillery the other night. The guard placed over it went to sleep, and some 'Home Guards' slipped in on him, and carried off the gun, leaving the carriage and caisson."

Col. Brown says Capt. Reuben Patrick carried the gun away on his shoulder. That noted piece of artillery is now in the arsenal at Frankfort. Gen. Marshall's son, Humphrey, who was present at the time, says the gun was the property of a private individual, who was having it tried, with a view of selling it to the Confederate government. It is a curious piece, having a bore of about one and a half inches, and would weight about one hundred and fifty pounds.

The services of the 10th Cavalry, while almost altogether in the state, were continuous during its whole term. It was used for the protection and defense of Eastern Kentucky, and during the summer of 1863 was all the time active. It had numerous engagements with the enemy, in which it suffered loss. Among them may be mentioned Elk Fork, Tenn., Glasdesville, Va., Mt. Sterling, Ky., Triplet's Bridge and Lancaster, Ky. It participated in the pursuit and rout of Pegram and Scott; in the course of its service it was rarely at rest, being on active duty all over Eastern Kentucky, and into East Tennessee and West Virginia. It was mustered out of service September 17, 1863, at Maysville, Ky.

Col. Joshua Tevis was a citizen of Louisville, engaged in the law practice when he undertook the work of raising the 10th Cavalry. He was a native of Shelbyville and had served in the Mexican war. He was well known as one of the leading men in the state and a prominent lawyer.

In May, 1863, he was appointed United States District Attorney for Kentucky, and after the war he removed to California, where he has become a distinguished figure and where he still resides.

Col. John Mason Brown not only served with the 10th Cavalry, but afterward with the 45th Infantry, and as a brigade commander. He made a fine reputation as a soldier, and after the war became one of the leading citizens of Louisville - standing at the head of the bar, and foremost in all business and other enterprises for the benefit and progress of the city, and in the regard of the people.

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Field and Staff

Joshua Tevis, Charles J. Walker
Lieutenant Colonel
R. R. Maltby
John Mason Brown, William A. Doniphan, James L. Foley, James M. Taylor
John N. Wallingford, Ridgly Wilson
George Fetter
John F. Moore
Washington Fithian, J. F. Fleming
Asst. Surgeon
Alfred T. Bennett, Samuel Maguire
James P. Hendrick
Sergeant Major
Robert P. Crupper, Chas. M. Taylor
Quartermaster Sergeant
Robert Hudson
Com. Sergeant
David E. Roberts
Hospital Steward
John H. Crain
John L. Thompson
Chief Bugler
Lewis P. Ort
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Individual Companies