MEDHURST & CO.
Fine Images and Documents
19569 Theodore H. Dodd 2nd Colorado Cav CDV of the bearded Dodd in his uniform.
Backmark A. Pattiani, Chicago, Ill. A great and rare Western unit. $475
Second Colorado Cavalry
(consolidated 2nd & 3rd Infantry)
Second Colorado Cavalry. -- Cols., Jesse H. Leavenworth, James
H. Ford, Lieut.-Cols., Theodore H. Dodd, Samuel S. Curtis;
Majs., James H. Ford, Samuel S. Curtis, J. Nelson Smith, Jesse
L. Pritchard, J. C. W. Hall.
This regiment was formed by the consolidation of the 2nd and
3rd Col. infantry in Oct., 1863, as directed in Special Order
No. 278, Headquarters Department of Missouri. The 2nd
infantry was organized at Fort Garland, Central City, Fort
Lyons and Denver from Dec. 14, 1861, to Dec. 15, 1862.
Cos. A and B. commanded by Capts. James H. Ford and Theodore
H. Dodd, respectively, were mustered into the U. S. service at
Fort Garland Dec. 14 and 24, 1861, for three years. They were
the first Colorado organizations to leave the territory and
served as unattached companies throughout the New Mexican
campaign in 1862 under Col. Canby.
They were designed to form the beginning of the 2nd infantry,
then in process of formation, eight more companies being
recruited and mustered in during 1862. Two of these companies
-- C and D -- were assigned to the 1st regiment on its return
from New Mexico at the beginning of 1863, when it became a
cavalry regiment, forming Cos. L and M.
On the return of Ford's and Dodd's companies to Fort Lyon (Old
Fort Wise) at the beginning of 1863, they took their place as
Cos. A and B in the 2nd Infantry, which then consisted of
eight companies, under command of Col. Leavenworth.
What was originally known as the 3rd infantry was never fully
organized, six companies being recruited for it and mustered
in at Denver City and Camp Weld from Sept. 1862, to Jan.,
1863, for three years.
The 2nd and 3rd infantry were both ordered to take the field
in the spring of 1863, when six companies of the 2nd, under
Lieut.- Col. Dodd, and five companies of the 3rd, under
Lieut.-Col. Curtis, marched across the plains to serve in
Missouri and the District of the Frontier. Some fractional
companies under Maj. Pritchard remained in Colorado to
On Nov. 20, 1863, after the order for the consolidation and
mounting of the regiment, the detachment still in Colorado,
designated Cos. F, G and K, started for Kansas City, Mo.,
under command of Maj. Pritchard, and arrived at its
destination early in Jan., 1864.
When organized as a cavalry regiment its officers were James
H. Ford, colonel; Theodore H. Dodd, lieutenant-colonel; Samuel
S. Curtis, J. Nelson Smith, majors. The command then numbered
over 1,100 officers and men, Cos. A to G being formed from the
2nd infantry, and H, I, K, L and M from the 3rd infantry.
Cos. A and B were mustered out Dec. 19, 1864, and Jan. 2,
1865, by reason of expiration of term of service.
E and F were mustered out June 15-16, 1865, and the remaining
companies were retained in service until Sept. 23, 1865, when
they were also mustered out.
During their service as independent companies in New Mexico,
Capt. Dodd's company formed a part of Col. Canby's immediate
command, and participated in the engagements at Fort Craig,
Valverde, Albuquerque and Peralta. It suffered heavily in the
disastrous action at Valverde, where its loss was 4 killed and
mortally wounded, and 26 wounded.
Capt. Ford's company was in the fight at Apache canon, and in
the later pursuit of the forces under Gen. Sibley down the Rio
Grande. Both companies then were employed in garrison and
fatigue duty at Fort Craig, Santa Fe and Fort Union during the
remainder of 1862.
In 1863, and before their consolidation as a cavalry regiment,
the detachments of the 2nd and 3rd infantry saw hard service
in the Indian Territory and Missouri, engaging at Cabin Creek,
Honey springs and Webber's falls, Ind. Ter., and at Dayton,
Mo. In the engagement at Honey springs, Capt. Green with his
command captured the flag of the 29th Tex.
During a part of this time portions of the Colorado troops
were stationed at Fort Smith, Ark., and at Pilot Knob, Mo.
After becoming a cavalry organization the 2nd was placed on
duty in western Missouri, with head quarters at Kansas City,
where it was employed in guarding the Kansas-Missouri border,
and was engaged in numerous skirmishes with guerrillas and
other irregular forces of the enemy. It was active at Sni
hills, Pleasant Hill, on the Little Blue and fought with
Thornton's forces at Camden Point and Fredericksburg.
When Gen. Price invaded Missouri in the fall of 1864 and
threatened to overrun Kansas, the 2nd Col. had just been
ordered to report to the Kansas Department for active service
against the Indians. A part of it was at Fort Leavenworth
when, on Oct. 18, martial law was declared in Kansas.
The 2nd at once took the field and for several days before
Gen. Blunt moved toward Lexington, Col. Ford scoured the
country thoroughly with his cavalry. From this time on the
gallant 2nd, or some part thereof, was in every battle and
skirmish of the campaign against Price.
At the battle of the Little Blue the regiment met with a
severe loss in the death of the brave Maj. Smith, on the Big
Blue, Capt. Green with his famous gray-horse squadron was
sharply engaged with a body of the enemy's cavalry that had
taken the main Kansas City road instead of the one at Byram's
ford, and the same command opened the engagement at Westport,
where it performed its full share in the glorious results of
At Trading Post, Green's and Kingsbury's squadrons opened the
fight by driving in the enemy's pickets at- 4 a. m. and this
early movement of the advance of the 1st division precipitated
the engagement which prevented the enemy from reaching Fort
Scott, their objective point. Beyond Trading Post, in the
second fight that marked that day on the Marias des Cygnes and
Little Osage, the same gallant squadrons were foremost in the
charge upon the enemy's guns, and they were in the brilliant
cavalry charge at Mine creek, which resulted in the capture of
Gens. Marmaduke and Cabell, 7 guns, and a large body of
At Newtonia, under Maj. Pritchard, the regiment was in the
thick of the fight and materially contributed by its audacious
bravery to the splendid victory. Here it formed a part of the
900, "who faced ten times their number, stubbornly flung
themselves against the foe, and for hours stood like a rock
unyielding against the storm of bullets and the hurling tide
of battle which fiercely dashed against our meager lines until
the arrival of Gen. Sanborn made certain the victory which had
already gleamed about us."
The regiment joined in the pursuit of the defeated and
demoralized army of Gen. Price until it retreated across the
Arkansas into Texas, and then returned to headquarters at Fort
Leavenworth. In his official report of the 38 days' campaign,
Maj.-Gen. Curtis presents the roll of honor of those who
especially distinguished themselves in the campaign.
In the list are the following members of the gallant 2nd Col.:
Col. James H. Ford; Majs. J. Nelson Smith, J. L. Pritchard and
S. S. Curtis, Capts. Greene, Kingsbury, Elmer, Boyd and Moses,
Lieuts. W. H. Pierce, R. S. Roe, William Wise and J. Fenton
Seymour, Surg. I. J. Pollok, and Asst.-Surgeons Vance and
During the remainder of the war, and until its final muster
out at Fort Leavenworth, Sept. 23, 1865, the regiment was
stationed by detachments at Forts Riley, Zarah, Ellsworth,
Larned, and other posts, actively employed in holding the
numerous bands of hostile Indians in subjection and in escort
and scouting duty.
Among its numerous skirmishes with Indians during this period
may be mentioned Point of Rocks, Fort Larned and Cow Creek.
The 2nd Col. established for itself a record of which it may
well be proud. It was renowned for its bravery and dash, in
which respects it was excelled by few, if any, regiments in
the service. Like the 1st cavalry, its members were of
exceptionally fine physique and were capable of great