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Missouri Cavalry in Virginia?

We visited the Battlefield at New Market, VA today.

It was not a large battle by Civil War standards, less than ten thousand men engaged between the two sides.

I found this story interesting.

There was one company of Missouri Cavalry on the Confederate side at New Market. They numbered 62 men and were without their horses. They were attached to the 62nd Virginia Mounted Infantry. I do not know if they had horses, but if they did probably did not use them in the battle.

New Market Battlefield  - Pic 17

New Market Battlefield – Pic 17 (Photo credit: BattlefieldPortraits.com) MO CAV marker

So how does one company of Missouri Cavalry end up in a theater of war where no other Missouri Confederates served?

As the story goes they were captured earlier in the war in Mississippi by Union fores. They were sent north, to the east coast. There they were exchanged for a like number of Union prisoners.

When a small Union Army under Gen. Franz Sigel invaded the Shenandoah Valley in May, 1864 the Missouri Cavalry were pressed into service minus their horses. They fought as infantry during the battle and lost four killed and a number wounded.

One of the wounded was a fellow by the name of W.R. Fellis. Fellis ended up marrying two local women (not at the same time, his first wife died) and staying in the area. The story is told on the plaque telling the story of the Missouri Cavalry who were so far from home.

Missouri Cavalry find sweethearts in the Valley.

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One comment on “Missouri Cavalry in Virginia?

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