Monday, July 19, 2010

1st Michigan Volunteer Cavalry

The 1st Michigan Cavalry was organized at Detroit, Michigan, between August 21 and September 6, 1861.

Thornton F. Brodhead (1822-1862) - that's him top left - studied law at Harvard, and practiced in Detroit, Michigan. He served through the Mexican was as an officer in the 15th infantry, and was twice brevetted for bravery. Resuming the practice of his profession after the war, he was elected to the state senate, and in 1852 appointed postmaster of Detroit. At the beginning of the civil war he raised the 1st Michigan cavalry regiment, in August, 1861, and the regiment left the State on September 29, with 1,144 officers and men. It went into winter quarters at Frederick, Md., but in February, 1862, moved into Virginia, joining Banks's troops in their advance up the Shenandoah Valley. While there it was attached to Williams's Division, and took a large share of the cavalry fighting in that campaign.

This was their flag..

Brodhead died of wounds received at the second battle of Bull Run while leading a charge; the regiment went on to serve at Gettysburg (where they took part in a charge that Custer – yes, him - pronounced unequalled for brilliancy and gallantry in "the annals of warfare") and until the end of the war..

It was later a part of the famed Michigan Brigade (also known as the Wolverine Brigade), commanded for a time by Brigadier General George Armstrong Custer. The brigade was created on December 12, 1862, at Washington, D.C.. It originally consisted of the 5th, 6th and 7th Michigan Cavalry regiments under the command of General Joseph T. Copeland. During the early part of the 1863 Gettysburg Campaign, the 1st Michigan Cavalry and Battery M, 2nd United States Artillery were added to the brigade in central Maryland as part of a major reorganization of the Army of the Potomac's Cavalry Corps.

The regiment was mustered out of service on September 12, 1865. Over the span of its existence, the regiment carried a total of 2705 men on its muster rolls. The regiment suffered 14 officers and 150 enlisted men killed in action or mortally wounded, and 6 officers and 244 enlisted men who died of disease, for a total of 414 fatalities.

Further references:

Figures are Newline and 20mm ad this represents the regiment in dismounted mode - the picture of them in line with the base width between, will be how I represent them in "extended line" for the Regimental Fire and Fury rules..


  1. Nice site. Please put me in contact with Tony DeLyall who created Berthier which I am using. I cannot seem to contact him. contact me at looking-at-imagineimage-dot-org

  2. Steve,

    How are you liking the F&F Regimental rules? (Not that I need to get interested in another period, but your pretty pictures are tempting.)

    -- Jeff

  3. I ordered Regimental F&F from the US on Saturday...will let you know how I get on with them when they arrive. Excellent figures as usual and I love that barn BTW.


  4. Quite the record, so much for the dictum "Who ever saw a dead cavalryman?"

    They darned good in miniature too!

  5. Like those as ever. Nice crisp figures well excusted.

    Thanks Steve.

  6. Apologies for the delay in responding...

    Matt - please do - I'd be interested in how you get on with them...

    Jeff - DG and I have been playing a game (one game, the same game!) since Christmas using the Beta version of the rules (dated 2005) - we like them - they are definitely my rule set of choice for the ACW. Simple but not too simple, enough flavour so you know you are playing the period, rewards correct tactics.. I'm currently "saving up" for the recently released proper version... :o)

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  8. Enjoy Hollywood, and the 1st Michigan -

  9. Steve (Turner) - one of the reasons I like the Newlines is because they have the same quality of animation as Peter Pig seem to get in there figures - you weren't far off...!

  10. Anonymous - brilliant youtube clip! :o)