17th (Marshall’s) Tennessee Cavalry Regiment

Also called 16th Tennessee Cavalry Regiment

This was mainly a paper organization, formed by Colonel Robert V. Richardson in the fall of 1863 for his “West Tennessee Brigade.” He appointed Captain J. W. Marshall, 1st Co. “G”, 15th Tennessee Cavalry as colonel, Captain H. D. Greer, 1st Co. “F”, 14th Tennessee Cavalry as lieutenant colonel, Captain John H. Hicks, 1st Co. “F”, 12th Tennessee Cavalry as major. These men were never commissioned to these offices by the Adjutant and Inspector General’s Office. Having so appointed them about September 1, 1863, he authorized them to return to West Tennessee to collect absentees and organize new companies. They were reported to have raised a full regiment within the Federal lines, but were unable to bring many men out. In December, 1863, General Forrest, who had been appointed to command of all cavalry in the Department, ordered all companies belonging to other commands to be returned to their original organizations.

No muster rolls of the companies supposed to have been raised were found. “Major” flicks reported that many men who were enlisted for this regiment joined other organizations. Of the new companies raised, enlistment records indicate that some of them were commanded by Captains E. G. Owen from Madison County, and by Anderson, Bell, Rhea and James Gwynne from Fayette County. James Gwynne was later captain 2nd Co. “H”, 14th (Neely’s) Tennessee Cavalry, and E. G. Owen captain of 3rd Co. “K” of the same regiment. The only record found of the regiment in the Official Records was in General Forrest’s organization of his forces dated January 25, 1864, where Marshall’s Regiment was listed in Richardson’s Brigade.

On February 5, 1864, the command never having been officially recognized, was consolidated into three companies, and assigned as Companies “H”, “I” and “K” to the 14th (Neely’s) Tennessee Cavalry, although Colonel Neely reported that only two companies were assigned to his regiment. This discrepancy may be explained by the fact that 2nd Company “I” of Neely’s Regiment was largely recruited by Colonel Neely in November 1863, and may have been assigned to Marshall’s Regiment by Richardson when he was still trying to complete the organization of that regiment.

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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