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Frontier Cavalry (part of the 26th New York Cavalry)

Unit History

Frontier Cavalry - 26th New York Cavalry

Co. M, Captains: Josiah Grout, Jr., later Major, Edwin M. Baldwin

Co. F, Captains: George B. French.

The Frontier Cavalry owed its origin to the fear created by the St. Albans Raid of Oct. 19, 1864, when a few Southern refugees from Canada suddenly descended on the town of St. Albans, near the Canadian border, plundered the banks, wounded a number of unoffending citizens, seized a number of horses and hurriedly made their escape across the border. A provisional force of 2,215 militiamen was promptly placed in service by the state to guard the frontier, and this force was soon succeeded by veteran troops of the Invalid Corps and a cavalry organization composed of seven companies from New York, three from Massachusetts, and two from Vermont. The regiment was never united and the two Vermont companies served at Burlington and St. Albans. The two companies, consisting of 101 officers and men each, were raised under authority granted by the president to Gen. Dix, commanding the Department of the East, and their enlistment was provided for under General Order No. 6, dated Dec. 29, 1864. The companies were mustered into the service of the United States Jan. 10, 1865, at Burlington, for one year, and remained quartered at Burlington in barracks until midwinter, when they moved to St. Albans, where they did guard and patrol duty until the latter part of June. The regiment was known as the 26th N. Y. Cavalry and the governor of that state issued all commissions above the line. The Vermont companies were denominated the 1st and 2nd companies of Frontier cavalry. Though not called upon to do any actual fighting, they faithfully and promptly performed every required duty, and were a well equipped and disciplined body of troops. They were mustered out at Burlington, June 2-3, 1865. The total enrolment of the two companies was 6 officers and 200 enlisted men. One officer was discharged and 1 enlisted man deserted, but no deaths occurred during the term of service.

United States Barracks, St. Albans

In a report signed March 31, 1865, Major Josiah Grout, in charge of the United States Barracks, St. Albans, Vermont, reported three units assigned:

1st Reg. Frontier Cavly (1st and 2d Vt. Co's), 4 officers and 153 men present, 8 on extra duty, 24 sick, 4 in arrest or confinement, total 189
2nd Regt Vet. Res. Corps, 2 officers and 77 men present, 6 sick, 2 in arrest/confinement, total 85
246th Co. V.R.C., 53 men, 22 sick, total 75.

Total of 349 Men present, 34 away (detached service, leave awol, sick, arrest/confinement), 383 total.

Previous months total 306.
Of these units, the 2nd Co. Frontier Cavalry had arrived from Burlington, 3/11/1865
246th Co. VRC arrived from unidentified Vermont Hospital, organized 3/24/1865.
Unit received discharge for 1st Lieut. G. D. Howard, 1st Co. F.C., resigned.
Other officers assigned:
Pearl D. Blodgett, Captain
George B. French, Captain
Francis G. Clark, 1st Lieut.
Frank A. Page, 1st Lieut.
Edwin M. Baldwin, 2nd Lieut.
Albert H. Gould, 2nd Lieut.
Of interest, the post had a "citizen physician", H. F. Stevens, who had been appointed 11/1/1864.

Source: U.S. Returns from MIlitary Posts, 1806-1916; Vermont, St. Albans, 1865 Mar - 1865 Sep.