1st Mounted Rifles Regiment

Mustered in by companies: July 30, 1861 to September 1862.
Consolidated with 3rd regiment of cavalry: July 21, 1865.

The following is taken from New York in the War of the Rebellion, 3rd ed. Frederick Phisterer. Albany: J. B. Lyon Company, 1912.

After the action at Big Bethel, Va., June 10, 1861, Major General Butler authorized Capt. Judson Kilpatrick, 5th N. Y. Volunteer Infantry, to organize a squadron of cavalry for duty in General Butler's Department. This authority was approved by the Secretary of War and Companies. A and B were accordingly organized at New York City. Later in 1861 Capt. C. C. Dodge received permission from the War Department to raise two more companies to form a battalion, and Companies C and D were accordingly organized at Newburgh with the consent of the State authorities, and Captain Dodge was appointed Major. In the summer of 1862 the Governor of the State authorized Major Dodge to organize sufficient companies to raise the battalion to a regiment and appointed him Colonel of the same, and Companies E, F, G, H, I, K, L and M were accordingly organized at New York City.

The companies were mustered in the service of the United States for three years: at Fort Monroe, Va., A and B, July 30, 1861; at Newburgh C and D September 18 and October 16, 1861, respectively; at. New York City E, F, G and H in June, July and August, 1862; and I, K, L and M in August and September, 1862. July 17, 1864, 270 men of the 16th N. Y. Volunteer Artillery, who had volunteered to serve with the regiment, were transferred to it. At the expiration of their term of service the men of Companies A, B, C and D, entitled thereto, were discharged and the companies continued in the service. July 21, 1865, the regiment, commanded by Col. Edwin V. Sumner, was consolidated at Fredericksburg, Va., into a battalion of seven companies, the men of Company B being transferred to Companies E and G; those of F to A; of H to K; of I to M, and of L to D; leaving in existence Companies A, C, D, E, G, K and M, and the reorganization of the regiment was completed by the transfer of the 3d N. Y. Volunteer Cavalry, consolidated into five companies, as Companies B, F, H, I and L to the same.

The companies were recruited principally: A and B at New York City; C and D; First and Second Cavalry Companies, Tenth Legion; at Monticello, Grahamville, Fallsburgh, Clayville, Middletown, Ellenville and Newburgh; E at Troy, Albany, Fort Edward, Salem, Schenectady and New York city; F at Troy, Buffalo and New York City; G at Troy, Chatham and New York city; H at Troy, Buffalo, Mt. Pleasant, Syracuse, Tarry-town and New York City; I at Canaan, Carmel, Chatham, North Castleton and New York City; K at Buffalo, Charlton, Livonia, Richmond, Springwater, Victor and New York City; L at Lenox, Oneida, Rome, Syracuse and Verona; and M at Chatham, North Castle and New York City.

The companies left the State, A and B in July, 1861; C and D December 6, 1861; E, F, G and H in August, 1862; I, K, L and M September 19, 1862, and served in the Department of Virginia (7th and 4th Corps) and Department of Virginia and North Carolina, principally at Fort Monroe, Norfolk and Suffolk, Portsmouth, Williamsburg and Yorktown, Va.; in Wistar's Division, 18th Corps, from January, 1864; in the Cavalry, Army of the James, with the 3d Brigade, 1st Division, 10th Corps, from March, 1864; a detachment as escort, headquarters Army of the James, from July, 1864; unattached from August, 1864; in the 3d Brigade of the Cavalry Division, Army of the James, until March, 1865; again unattached to the close of the war; and at Fredericksburg, Va., from April, 1865. Companies H and D served with the 10th Corps from June 1864; with the 18th Corps from August, 1864.

September 6, 1865, the regiment received the designation, 4th Provisional Regiment, N. Y. Volunteer Cavalry, and its final record will be found under that head.

The regiment lost by death, killed in action, 1 officer, 18 enlisted men; of wounds received in action, 1 officer, 12 enlisted men; of disease and other causes, 4 officers, 125 enlisted men; total, 6 officers, 155 enlisted men; aggregate, 161; of whom 8 enlisted men died in the hands of the enemy.

The following is taken from The Union army: a history of military affairs in the loyal states, 1861-65 -- records of the regiments in the Union army -- cyclopedia of battles -- memoirs of commanders and soldiers, Volume II: New York, Maryland, West Virginia and Ohio. Madison, WI: Federal Pub. Co., 1908.

First Mounted Rifles.—Cols., Charles C. Dodge, Benjamin F. Onderdonk, Edwin V. Sumner; Lieut.-Cols., Benjamin F. Onderdonk, Alexander G. Patton, James N. Wheelan; Majs., William H. Schiefifelon, Henry Terwilhger, James N. Wheelan, Minott A. Pruyn, Charles C. Dodge, Alexander G. Patton, Edgar A. Hamilton. This regiment from the state at large was organized at New York city. The companies were mustered into the U. S. service for three years as follows: A and B at Fort Monroe, Va.. July 30, 1861 ; C and D at Newburg, Sept. 18 and Oct. 16, 1861; E, F. G and H at New York city, in June. July and Aug., 1862; and I, K, L and M in Aug and Sept., 1862. On July 17, 1864, it received by transfer 270 men of the i6th N. Y. artillery. The original members, except veterans, were mustered out at the expiration of their term of service and ia New York Regiments 301 July, 1865, the regiment was consolidated into a battalion of seven companies, commanded by Col. Sumner; to complete the reorganization of the regiment, it was consolidated with the 3d N. Y. cavalry, which constituted companies B, F, H, I and L of the new organization. The first two companies left the state in July, 1861; C and D in Dec, 1861; E, F, G and H in Aug., 1862; and I, K, L and M in Sept., 1862. It served until 1864 with the 7th and 4th corps, principally at Fortress Monroe, Norfolk, Suffolk, Portsmouth, Williamsburg and Yorktown, Va., taking part in over 50 battles and skirmishes, but sustaining no severe losses, its heaviest casualties being at Scott's mills, Va., in May, 1863, when 28 were killed, wounded and missing. The regiment was ordered to join Wistar's division, i8th corps in Jan., 1864, with which it was engaged at New Kent Court House and Bottom's bridge. During the rest of its active service it was principally with the cavalry division of the Army of the James, one detachment acting as escort at headquarters, and Cos. H and D with the loth corps from June to Aug., 1864. In the operations against Petersburg and Richmond in May, 1864, it sustained a loss of 13, and during the siege was often in action, but met with no large losses, its total casualties amounting to 43 killed, wounded and missing. It was active at the final assault on Petersburg, April 2, and saw its last fighting at Murfree's depot, Somerton and Jackson, N. C. The final record of the regiment will be found under the head of the 4th provisional cavalry. The losses of the regiment during service were 2 officers and 30 men killed and mortally wounded; 3 officers and 125 men died of disease and other causes, a total of 165. (See 7th Cavalry.)


1st Regiment Mounted Rifles, NY Volunteers | Standard | Civil War

The 1st Mounted Rifles received this presentation flag in October 1862. Embroidered by Tiffany & Co., the flag features the Goddess Columbia with theā€¦

NYSMM Online Resources

Battles and Casualties from Phisterer (pdf)
Battles and Casualties from Phisterer (spreadsheet)

Civil War Newspaper Clippings

Muster Rolls

Unit Roster

Search the Museum catalog for this unit

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Other Resources

This is meant to be a comprehensive list. If, however, you know of a resource that is not listed below, please send an email to ng.ny.nyarng.list.historians@army.mil with the name of the resource and where it is located. This can include photographs, letters, articles and other non-book materials. Also, if you have any materials in your possession that you would like to donate, the museum is always looking for items specific to New York's military heritage. Thank you.

“A floor plan of a room at a camp in Williamsburg, Va., highlighting the locations of a door, a fireplace, two bunks, windows, a box for ordinance, and a writing desk.” University of Michigan: Clements Library. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/i/image/image-idx?id=S-WCL1IC-X-6851%5DWCL006917.

Ballantine, George. “George Ballantine collection (1865).” University of Michigan: Clements Library. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/c/clementsead/umich-wcl-M-4489bal?id=navbarbrowselink;view=text.

Blunt, A. D. “A manicule pointing to the text "One of our [?]", at the end of a letter.” University of Michigan: Clements Library. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/i/image/image-idx?id=S-WCL1IC-X-6855%5DWCL006921.

Bradney, Griffin. “Bradney Griffin Letters, 1863-1864.” New York Historical Society. https://bobcat.library.nyu.edu/primo-explore/fulldisplay?docid=nyu_aleph003665586&context=L&vid=NYHS&lang=en_US&search_scope=nyhs&adaptor=Local%20Search%20Engine&tab=nyhs&query=any,contains,Bradney%20Griffin%20letters,%201863-1864&offset=0.

Brooks, Jewett H. “Jewett H. Brooks papers (1839-1865, bulk 1862-1865).” University of Michigan: Clements Library. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/c/clementsead/umich-wcl-M-2575bro?view=text.

Buntline, Ned, Frederic A. Brady. Life in the saddle; or, the cavalry scout. Edward Zane Carroll Judson, 1864.

Burgen, Isaac N. “Reminiscences of two years service in the Union army, 1865-1895.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+7078352+Default+38+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+38+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

“Civil War diaries and journals, 1861-1865.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+12+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+12+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Creamer, Edward S. The mounted men souvenir. Headquarters, 1901.

Cronin, David Edward. The evolution of a life : described in the memoirs of Major Seth Eyland late of the Mounted Rifles. S.W. Green's Son, publisher, 1884.

Disoway, Annie R. “Disosway family letters, 1861-1864.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+7078352+Default+26+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+26+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Dyer, Frederick H. A Compendium of the War of the Rebellion. The Dyer Publishing Company, 1908.

      First New York mounted rifles, 1861-5, 12th annual reunion and dinner of the Veterans association.

Griffin, Bradney B. Letter, 28 June 1863.

6 leaves. Photostats (negative). 
Letter, 28 June 1863, from Bradney B. Griffin (1843-1872), surgeon in the 1st New York Mounted Rifles, to an unknown correspondent describing efforts by the unit stationed at South Mills, North Carolina, to recapture 80 Confederate officers who had escaped while on their way to Fort Delaware. Also includes details about the residents and economic conditions of the area.
Accession 21737. Located at the Library of Virginia in Richmond, Virginia.
Thank you to Ed Worman for pointing out this resource.

Godfred, David. “Letter, 1864 August 7.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+9+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+9+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Green, Horace A. “Horace A. Green letters, 22 October 1864, 4 November 1864, undated.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+11+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+11+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Habberton, John. “The John Habberton papers, 1861-1921, bulk 1861-1865.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+7078352+Default+35+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+35+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Habberton, John. “When Boys were Men.” New York State Military Museum. http://catalog.nysmm.org/Presto/content/Detail.aspx?ctID=MWUzZjNjOGQtZjA1My00MDA3LTk0ZDMtN2E5ZmNkZWM1ZWUw&rID=MTI3Nzk=&qrs=RmFsc2U=&q=KENhdGFsb2cuQ29uZmxpY3Q6KDE4NjUpKSBBTkQgKENhdGFsb2cuTWlsQ29tcG9uZXQ6KCJVbml0ZWQgU3RhdGVzLiBBcm15LiBOZXcgWW9yayBDYXZhbHJ5LiBNb3VudGVkIFJpZmxlcywgMXN0Iikp&qcf=MWUzZjNjOGQtZjA1My00MDA3LTk0ZDMtN2E5ZmNkZWM1ZWUw&ph=VHJ1ZQ==&bckToL=VHJ1ZQ==&rrtc=VHJ1ZQ==.

Jones, Henry William Felton. Sermon. Bergen Point, N.J., Young men's Christian Association, 1862.

[Names and addresses of surviving veterans of First N.Y. Mounted Rifles.]. 1890.

Newland, Frances. “A stick figure bent in an uncomfortable position, representing Frances Newland sitting in an Episcopal church pew.” University of Michigan: Clements Library. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/i/image/image-idx?id=S-WCL1IC-X-6848%5DWCL006914.

New York (State). Adjutant General's Office. A record of the commissioned officers, non-commissioned officers, and privates, of the regiments which were organized in the state of New York and called into the service of the United States to assist in suppressing the rebellion, caused by the secession of some of the Southern states from the Union, A.D. 1861, as taken from the muster-in rolls on file in the Adjutant-General's Office, S.N.Y. Comstock & Cassidy, Printers, 1864-1868.

New York (State). Adjutant General's Office. Registers of the New York regiments in the War of the Rebellion. J.B. Lyon, 1894-1906.

Onderdonk, B. F. “B.F. Onderdonk letter to D. Parish Jr., 1888 August 15.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+8+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+8+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Pierce, S. C. “The S.C. Pierce collection, 1869-1905.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+7078352+Default+24+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+24+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Place, Thomas. “Memoir, ca. 1908.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+20+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+20+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

“Regiment collection, 1776-ca. 1900.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+4+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+4+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Roback, Henry. The veteran volunteers of Herkimer and Otsego counties in the war of the rebellion; being a history of the 152d N.Y.V. With scenes, incidents, etc., which occurred in the ranks of the 34th N.Y., 97th N.Y., 121st N.Y., 2d N.Y. heavy artillery, and 1st and 2d N.Y. mounted rifles. Press of L.C. Childs & Son, 1888.

Robinson, Lucius Elmer. “Papers, 1864-1870.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+13+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+13+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Simmons, George W. “George W. Simmons letters, 1864-1865.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+7+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+7+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Skinner, Rhoads. “Civil War journal, 1862 (inclusive).” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+7078352+Default+49+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+55+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Starbird Family. “Starbird family papers, ca. 1845-1864.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+14+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+14+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Tolmon, C. L. “Numerous dots surrounding the signature at the end of a letter.” University of Michigan: Clements Library. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/i/image/image-idx?id=S-WCL1IC-X-6853%5DWCL006919.

Van Vechten, Henry C. At the siege of Suffolk. In National tribune scrapbook I 83.

Vinaca, Francis E. “Francis E. Vinaca papers (1850-1871, bulk 1861-1865).” University of Michigan: Clements Library. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/c/clementsead/umich-wcl-M-2940.2vin?view=text.

Warner, Ezra J. Generals in Blue: Lives of Union Commanders. Louisiana State University Press, 1964.

W., [?]. “A manicule, used in place of the word hand.” University of Michigan: Clements Library. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/i/image/image-idx?id=S-WCL1IC-X-6854%5DWCL006920. 

Wagner, John F. “Correspondence, 1862-1890. 1862-1865 (bulk).” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+16+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+16+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Wyvell family. “Papers ; 1862-1962 bulk 1862-1867.” Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/cgi-bin/zgate?present+524728+Default+22+1+F+1.2.840.10003.5.10+34+/cgi-bin/zgate%3fACTION%3dINIT%26FORM_HOST_PORT%3d/prod/www/data/z3950/oclcmss3.html,zcat.oclc.org,210%26AUTH%3doclcmss.

Items in bold are in the museum's collections.


Photos from the American Civil War Research Database:

Charles W. Ball. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1470408. Photo Courtesy of New York State Military Museum.

James D. Bell. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1648187. Photo courtesy of Edward Schoenberger.

Delos Fairbanks Briggs. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1651859. Photo Courtesy of New York State Military Museum.

Henry C. Dickinson. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1650618. Photo courtesy of Karl Sundstrom.

Charles Cleveland Dodge. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1650667.

Benjamin Franklin Onderdonk. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1426836. Photo courtesy of Frank Vattelana.

Alexander G. Patton. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1574319. Photo courtesy of Massachusetts Commandery of MOLLUS.

Orin Purcell. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1656193. Photo Courtesy of New York State Military Museum.

Eugene Rider. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1495847. Photo Courtesy of New York State Military Museum.

Benjamin F. Sceva. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1621181. Photo from Library of Congress collection.

William H. Schieffelin. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1656889. Photo courtesy of Henry Pomerantz.

Charles Hamilton Shepard. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1657145. Photo courtesy of Massachusetts Commandery of MOLLUS.

Charles R. Sykes. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&768475.

Joseph S. Young. 1st New York Mounted Rifles. http://www.civilwardata.com/active/hdsquery.dll?SoldierHistory?U&1659358. Photo courtesy of Edward Schoenberger.