FIRST MARYLAND CAVALRY.
ON the 15th of May, 1862, eighteen young Marylanders who had served
one year in Company K, First Virginia Cavalry, but who had refused to
re-enlist, believing a Maryland regiment could be formed, met in Richmond
and proceeded to organize Company A, which served as the nucleus of what was
destined to be one of the most distinguished cavalry commands in the Confederate
service. Among these young men were Ridgely Brown, of Montgomery ;
Frank A. Bond, of Anne Arundel ; Thomas Griffith, of Montgomery, and J. A. V.
Pue, of Howard. Ridgely Brown was elected Captain and the rest Lieutenants
as their names stand.
It had long been the desire of these Marylanders to have their State repre-
sented in the cavalry arm of the service. They were all dashing horsemen, and,
as many kindred spirits had come and were coming to Virginia without any
effort being made to organize a larger body than a company, which had been
absorbed at once by some Virginia regiment, they built up this company with the
express stipulation that it was one around which all future companies of Maryland
cavalry were to rally.
Recruiting went on briskly, and in a short time the ranks of Company A were
filled up with some of the finest young men who had left the State of Maryland.
They were fortunate, too, in the selection of their officers, and under their leader-
ship the company subsequently won a reputation second to that of no company in
the Confederate cavalry.
After its organization the company was ordered to the Valley of Virginia
and attached to Colonel Munford's Second Virginia, there to remain until other
cavalry companies had been organized, with which to form a battalion or regiment.
In the meantime Company A did good service, serving with Jackson in his
memorable Valley campaign. It particularly distinguished itself with Ashby in the
engagement near Harrisonburg with Percy Wyndham's First New Jersey Cavalry,
and was complimented by General Ewell for its gallantry upon that occasion. It
was with Jackson before Richmond, and subsequently in the Maryland campaign,
where it distinguished itself in many encounters with the enemy.
Up to this time Company A was the only representative Maryland cavalry
company, but upon its return from the Maryland campaign it found that three other
fine companies had been formed, and were ready to effect a battalion organization.