1st Florida Special Cavalry Battalion

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1st Special Cavalry Battalion
ActiveApril, 1864 - 1865
Country Confederate States of America
Allegiance Florida
Branch Confederate States Army
Nickname(s)Cow Cavalry
EngagementsAmerican Civil War
C. J. Munnerlyn

The 1st Florida Special Cavalry Battalion, nicknamed Cow Cavalry, was a Confederate States Army cavalry unit from Florida during the American Civil War. Commanded by Charles James Munnerlyn; it was organized to protect herds of cattle from Union raiders.[1][2] The hides and meat from Florida cattle was a critical supply item for the Confederacy.

James McKay wrote to the state of the need to protect Florida cattle after the Battle of Olustee, and a group of Florida crackers was organized near Plant City,[3] and were based out of Fort Myers,[4] taking part in the Battle of Fort Myers. They would drive cattle to Baldwin.[5] John T. Lesley, Francis A. Hendry, and W. B. Henderson were all in the Cow Cavalry.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Taylor, Robert A. (1986). "Cow Cavalry: Munnerlyn's Battalion in Florida, 1864-1865". The Florida Historical Quarterly. 65 (2): 196–214. JSTOR 30146741.
  2. ^ "Jacob Summerlin: The cowman who was king of crackers". TBNweekly.
  3. ^ "Cow Cavalry Historical Marker". www.hmdb.org.
  4. ^ "Raid on Gopher Ridge". www.explorenaples.com.
  5. ^ "Whats New at the Bell Research Center". www.bellresearchcenter.com.

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