65th North Carolina Regiment-6th Cavalry

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(AKA 65th North Carolina Regiment-6th Cavalry)

6th North Carolina Cavalry Regiment was officially organized by the consolidation of the 5th and 7th North Carolina Cavalry Battalions. The unit was also known as the 65th North Carolina Regiment-6th Cavalry and the 65th North Carolina State Troops. The 5th North Carolina Cavalry Battalion was organized at Jacksboro, Tennessee, during the fall of 1862. It contained five companies and skirmished the Federals in Tennessee and Kentucky. In August 1863 the unit consolidated with the 65th North Carolina Regiment-6th Cavalry. Lieutenant Colonel John B. Palmer and Major Alfred H. Baird were in command. The 7th North Carolina Cavalry Battalion was organized during the summer of 1862 with six companies. The unit skirmished in Tennessee and Kentucky until August 1863 when it reorganized with the 65th North Carolina Regiment-6th Cavalry. Lieutenant Colonel George N. Folk and Major Thaddeus P. Siler were in command. This consolidation transpired on August 3, 1863, under terms of special order 183, paragraph 16, from the Confederate Adjutant and Inspector General's Office. The unit also conducted operations in Georgia, the Cumberland Gap, and throughout North Carolina: Ringgold, GA, September 11, 1863; Chickamauga, GA., September 19, 1863; Philadelphia, TN., October 20, 1863; Plymouth, N.C., October 31, 1864; Kinston, N.C., March 10, 1865. The 6th Cavalry suffered its greatest loss at the Battle of Chickamauga. (See Original Letters and Capture.)

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Recommended Reading: Lee's Cavalrymen: A History of the Mounted Forces of the Army of Northern Virginia, 1861-1865 (Hardcover). Description: A companion to his previous work, Lincoln's Cavalrymen, this volume focuses on the cavalry of the Army of Northern Virginia its leadership, the military life of its officers and men as revealed in their diaries and letters, the development of its tactics as the war evolved, and the influence of government policies on its operational abilities. All the major players and battles are involved, including Joseph E. Johnston, P. G. T Beauregard, and J. E. B. Stuart. As evidenced in his previous books, Longacre's painstakingly thorough research will make this volume as indispensable a reference as its predecessor.

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Recommended Reading: Mountain Partisans: Guerrilla Warfare in the Southern Appalachians, 1861-1865 (Hardcover). Description: This is the story of a civil war within the Civil War. Some mountain folks in Southern Appalachia opposed the Confederacy, especially when the South's conscription and impressment policies began to cause severe "home hardships." Deserters from the Rebel army hid in the mountains and formed guerrilla bands that terrorized unprotected Confederate homesteads. Violence escalated so much that Richmond had to detach entire Confederate regiments to pursue, engage, and eliminate these guerrilla units. Continued below...

Mountain Partisans penetrates the shadowy world of Union and Confederate guerrillas, describes their leaders and bloody activities, and explains their effect on the Civil War and the culture of Appalachia. Although it did not alter the outcome of the war, guerrilla conflict affected the way the war was fought. The Union army's experience with guerrilla warfare in the mountains influenced the North's adoption of "hard war" as a strategy used against the South in the last two years of the war and helped shape the army's attitude toward Southern civilians. Partisan warfare in Southern Appalachia left a legacy of self-imposed isolation and distrust of outsiders. Wartime hatreds contributed to a climate of feuds and extralegal vigilantism that lasted for generations. The mountain economy received a monumental setback from the war's devastating effects, laying the groundwork for the region's exploitation and impoverishment by outside corporations in the early 20th century.

 

Recommended Reading: Nathan Bedford Forrest: In Search of the Enigma (Hardcover: 528 pages). Description: Nathan Bedford Forrest’s astounding military abilities, passionate temperament, and tactical ingenuity on the battlefield have earned the respect of Civil War scholars and military leaders alike. He was a man who stirred the most extreme emotions among his followers and his enemies, and his name continues to inspire controversy. In this comprehensive biography, Forrest is properly illuminated as the brilliant battlefield tactician--and the only Confederate cavalry leader feared by Gen. Ulysses S. Grant. Historians Eddy W. Davison and Daniel Foxx offer a detailed explanation of the Fort Pillow "Massacre" unraveling the facts to prove that it was not indeed a massacre. The book also discusses Forrest’s role in the Ku Klux Klan and how he came to be its first grand wizard. Continued below...

Dispelling several myths, this is a study of the complete Forrest, including his rise as a self-made millionaire in Memphis, his remarkable success leading the Seventh Tennessee Cavalry, and his life following the Civil War. Although the book is filled with vivid battle narratives, it goes beyond Forrest’s military life to examine other aspects of this enigmatic leader—his role as husband and father, for example, and his dramatic call for full citizenship for Black Southerners. Edwin C. Bearss, historian emeritus, National Park Service, states: "Recommended as must reading for those who want to know Forrest and his way of war."

 
Recommended Reading: Confederate Military History Of North Carolina: North Carolina In The Civil War, 1861-1865. Description: The author, Prof. D. H. Hill, Jr., was the son of Lieutenant General Daniel Harvey Hill (North Carolina produced only two lieutenant generals and it was the second highest rank in the army) and his mother was the sister to General “Stonewall” Jackson’s wife. In Confederate Military History Of North Carolina, Hill discusses North Carolina’s massive task of preparing and mobilizing for the conflict; the many regiments and battalions recruited from the Old North State; as well as the state's numerous contributions during the war. Continued below...

During Hill's Tar Heel State study, the reader begins with interesting and thought-provoking statistical data regarding the 125,000 "Old North State" soldiers that fought during the course of the war and the 40,000 that perished. Hill advances with the Tar Heels to the first battle at Bethel, through numerous bloody campaigns and battles--including North Carolina’s contributions at the "High Watermark" at Gettysburg--and concludes with Lee's surrender at Appomattox.

 

Recommended Reading: The Civil War in North Carolina. Description: Numerous battles and skirmishes were fought in North Carolina during the Civil War, and the campaigns and battles themselves were crucial in the grand strategy of the conflict and involved some of the most famous generals of the war. John Barrett presents the complete story of military engagements across the state, including the classical pitched battle of Bentonville--involving Generals Joe Johnston and William Sherman--the siege of Fort Fisher, the amphibious campaigns on the coast, and cavalry sweeps such as General George Stoneman's Raid.

 

Recommended Reading: War at Every Door: Partisan Politics and Guerrilla Violence in East Tennessee, 1860-1869. Description: One of the most divided regions of the Confederacy, East Tennessee was the site of fierce Unionist resistance to secession, Confederate rule, and the Southern war effort. It was also the scene of unrelenting 'irregular,' or guerrilla, warfare between Union and Confederate supporters, a conflict that permanently altered the region's political, economic, and social landscape. In this study, Noel Fisher examines the military and political struggle for control of East Tennessee from the secession crisis through the early years of Reconstruction, focusing particularly on the military and political significance of the region's irregular activity. Continued below...

Fisher portrays in grim detail the brutality and ruthlessness employed not only by partisan bands but also by Confederate and Union troops under constant threat of guerrilla attack and government officials frustrated by unstinting dissent. He demonstrates that, generally, guerrillas were neither the romantic, daring figures of Civil War legend nor mere thieves and murderers, but rather were ordinary men and women who fought to live under a government of their choice and to drive out those who did not share their views.

Sources: Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies; Walter Clark, Histories of the Several Regiments and Battalions from North Carolina in the Great War 1861-1865; National Park Service: American Civil War; National Park Service: Soldiers and Sailors System; Weymouth T. Jordan and Louis H. Manarin, North Carolina Troops, 1861-1865; and D. H. Hill, Confederate Military History Of North Carolina: North Carolina In The Civil War, 1861-1865.

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