3rd Virginia Cavalry

The 3rd Virginia Volunteer Cavalry Regiment was a cavalry regiment raised in Virginia for service in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. It fought mostly with the Army of Northern Virginia.

3rd Virginia Volunteer Cavalry Regiment
Flag of Virginia (1861–1865).png
Flag of Virginia, 1861
ActiveJuly 1861 – April 1865
DisbandedApril 1865
AllegianceConfederate States of America Confederate States of America
EngagementsPeninsula Campaign
Seven Days' Battles
Second Battle of Bull Run
Battle of Antietam
Battle of Fredericksburg
Battle of Chancellorsville
Battle of Brandy Station
Battle of Gettysburg
Bristoe Campaign
Overland Campaign
Siege of Petersburg
Valley Campaigns of 1864
Appomattox Campaign
Battle of Five Forks
Trooper Robert Vaughan of Co. I, 3rd Virginia Cavalry Regiment

The 3rd Virginia Cavalry was organized with independent companies and entered Confederate service on July 1, 1861. The regiment was formed with eleven companies, later reduced to ten. It was also called 2nd Regiment until October.

Its members were raised in the counties of Mecklenburg, Elizabeth City, New Kent, Halifax, Nottoway, Cumberland, Dinwiddie, and Prince Edward.

For a time six companies served in the Department of the Peninsula and four in the Valley District. Later the unit was assigned to General F. Lee's, Wickham's, and Munford's Brigade, Army of Northern Virginia. It fought in many conflicts from Williamsburg to Fredericksburg, then was involved in the engagements at Kelly's Ford, Chancellorsville, Brandy Station, Upperville, Gettysburg, Bristoe, Mine Run, The Wilderness, Todd's Tavern, Spotsylvania, Haw's Shop, and Cold Harbor. The 3rd went on to participate in Early's operations in the Shenandoah Valley and the Appomattox Campaign.

It took 210 effectives to Gettysburg, but only 3 surrendered on April 9, 1865. Its commanders were Colonels Thomas F. Goode, Robert Johnston, and Thomas H. Owen; Lieutenant Colonels William R. Carter, William M. Feild, and John T. Thornton; and Majors Henry Carrington and Jefferson C. Phillips. During his time with the regiment Carter kept a field diary, parts of which were published in 1998 under the title Sabres, Saddles, and Spurs.[1]

Future Speaker of the Virginia House of Delegates and justice of the Virginia Supreme Court of Virginia Benjamin W. Lacy commanded a company in the 3rd Virginia.

Confederate surgeon and Civil War diarist Dr. Richard Eppes initially served with the 3rd Virginia, before furnishing a substitute to complete his term of service.

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  1. ^ "Sabres, Saddles, and Spurs (multimedia)". Encyclopedia Virginia. Retrieved 8 July 2015.