11th Tennessee Cavalry Regiment

Also called 1st East Tennessee Cavalry Battalion:
11th East Tennessee Cavalry Regiment

Companies “A”, “B”, “C”, and “D” mustered in at Camp Nelson, Kentucky, August 15, 1863; merged into 9th Tennessee Cavalry Regiment March 24, 1865.


  • Colonel-Isham Young.
  • Lieutenant Colonel-Reuben A. Davis.
  • Majors-Edward Black, James H. Johnson.


  • Wiley T. Huddleston, Co. “A”. Some men from Colonel Clift’s 7th Tennessee Infantry.
  • William C. Peterson, Co. “B”. Later captain Co. “H”, 9th Tennessee Cavalry.
  • David Dossett, Co. “C”. Later captain Co. “I”, 9th Tennessee. Most of the men enrolled at Lebanon, Kentucky May 15, 1863.
  • John C. Wright, Co. “D”. Later captain Co. “G”, 9th Tennessee.
  • —Newport, Co. “E”. No records.
  • No record of Co. “F”.
  • —Barger, Thomas McDermott, Co. “G”. McDermott was later captain Co. “K”, 9th Tennessee Cavalry
  • No record of Co. “H”.
  • No record of Co. “I”.
  • No record of Co. “K”.
  • Richard E. Ellis (1st Lt.), Benjamin F. Green, Co. “L”. Mustered in at Knoxville, November 4, 1863. Captain Green later became captain of Co. “L”, 9th Tennessee Cavalry.
  • John Wilsom, Co. “M”. Later captain Co. “M”, 9th Tennessee. Men said to be from Union County.

There was an incomplete roll of a company commanded by Captain William Harrison, which might have been one of the missing companies.

The report of Adjutant General James P. Brownlow, State of Tennessee, says Colonel Isham Young was commissioned to the regiment on September 25, 1863, but there is no record in the Official Records of his ever having been in active command. Major Edward Black became major, 9th Tennessee, when the merger took place. Lieutenant Colonel Reuben A. Davis was reported in command of a battalion of East Tennessee Scouts at Lebanon, Kentucky, in the 2nd Division, XXIII Army Corps, on June 30, 1863. The same battalion was reported, on July 31, 1863, in the 1st Division, unassigned to a brigade. On August 15, 1863, the 1st Battalion, 11th Tennessee Cavalry, under Lieutenant Colonel Davis, was assigned to a brigade which Colonel John F. DeCourcy was instructed to organize. On October 24, 1863, Colonel DeCourcy, at Crab Orchard, Kentucky, reported: “The 9th and 11th Tennessee Cavafry joined today.” He described them as raw, undisciplined troops. From this time on the organization was reported as the 11th Tennessee Cavalry.

Colonel DeCourcy was at the time enroute to Cumberland Gap, and after some fighting, occupied that place on September 9, 1863. On November 7, 1863, Colonel S. Harney, at Morristown, reporting on the disposition of his forces following the defeat and rout of Colonel I. Garrard by Confederate forces near Rogersville on November 6, reported: “The greater part of the 11th Tennessee Cavalry I ordered out on the Greenville Road, if possible, to get some information on the enemy. The other portion I sent on the Bean’s Station Road.”

On December 31, 1863, the 11th Tennessee Cavalry (five companies) Lieutenant Colonel Davis, was reported at Cumberland Gap, where Colonel Wilson C. Lemert was in command. On January 5, 1864, Colonel Lemert, in reporting the loss of a portion of his command on the Mulberry Gap Road in an engagement with Confederate forces under Major General Sam Jones, said the 11th Tennessee Cavalry was stationed at Mulberry Gap and he feared it too was lost. His apprehension at the time seems to have been unjustified, for there was no report of their being involved.

On January 28, 1864, 50 men of the 11th, under Captain Newport, of Co. “E” were in a skirmish near Jonesville, Virginia, in which Captain Newport was reported severely wounded, and a number of other casualties were suffered. On January 31, the regiment was reported in the District of the Clinch, under Brigadier General T.T. Garrard. On February 14, a detachment under Lieutenant Riseden, serving as guard for a forage train on the Mulberry Road were attacked near Jonesville and the wagon train captured. The regiment at that time was stationed at Ball’s Bndge, Virginia. On February 15, Captain Huddleston was reported as leading a scout on the Iron Works Road. On February 24, the 1st Battalion 11th Tennessee Cavalry, under Lieutenant Colonel Davis, were surrounded and captured by Confederate forces under Brigadier General William E. (“Grumble”) Jones, at Wyerman’s Mills, five miles east of Cumberland Gap. General Garrard reported Lieutenant Colonel Davis was severely wounded and captured, and that only four officers and 60 men escaped. He stated; “On account of never having been able to obtain a correct report from that command it is very difficult to arrive at exact numbers so as to represent the loss of the 11th Tennessee Cavalry proper.” Confederate reports gave the number of captured as 256, some of whom belonged to a detachment of infantry which was with the cavalry in the engagement. Lieutenant Colonel Davis later escaped, and returned to Cumberland Gap on March 14.

On March 15, 1864. General Garrard, in reporting on his available force, listed “the 11th Tennessee Cavalry (10 companies) 252 men for duty, no horses, are without discipline, and with their present organization of but little value.” This was the first time the regiment was reported with 10 companies. He went on to say that he had only two mounted men in his entire command at Cumberland Gap.

On April 10, 1864, Brigadier General Jacob Ammen was placed in command of the 4th Division, Brigadier General Garrard the 1st Brigade, stationed at Cumberland Gap. On April 12, orders were issued: “The 11th Tennessee Cavalry will be remounted as soon as horses can be obtained and forage for their support. They will then protect communications with Knoxville, and scout in front of Cumberland Gap.” On April 30, Colonel John Mehringer was reported in command of the brigade.

On May 31, 1864, Colonel William Y. Dillard was reported in command of the 1st Brigade, still stationed at Cumberland Gap. The regiment continued to be reported at Cumberland Gap for the balance of the year. Until September 30, Lieutenant Colonel Davis was reported as in command; on September 30, Major Edward Black was in command; on October 31, and December 31, Major James H. Johnson. On December 31, 1864, Lieutenant Colonel William C. Bartlett was reported as commanding the 1st Brigade at Cumberland Gap, and the 11th Tennessee Cavalry was reported as dismounted.

On February 1, 1865, an order was issued: “Upon arrival of the 34th Kentucky Infantry at Cumberland Gap, the 11th Tennessee Cavalry Regiment will proceed to Knoxville, reporting on their arrival to Brigadier General Alvan C. Gillem, Commanding Brigade, Governor’s Guards.”

At Knoxville, the regiment was merged into the 9th Tennessee Cavalry on March 24, 1865. Meanwhile, a detachment of 20 men from the 11th Tennessee Cavalry was reported at Johnsonville, at the time of Major General N. B. Forrest’s attack upon that place in November, 1864. How they happened to be there is not known, for there is no other record of the 11th Tennessee Cavalry having at any time been in Middle Tennessee.

This unit history was extracted from Tennesseans in the Civil War, Vol 1. Copyrighted 1964 by the Civil War Centennial Commission of Tennessee and is published here with their permission. This history may not be republished for any reason without the written permission of the copyright owner.

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