Fourteenth Kentucky (Union) Cavalry

Published in Capt. Thomas Speed, 1897, The Union regiments of Kentucky. Courier-Journal Job Printing Co., Louisville, Kentucky.

The organization of the 14th Ky. Cavalry was begun in the summer of 1862. H. C. Lilly, a lawyer at Irvine, Estill county, and who has since been circuit judge in that district, was appointed colonel, with authority to raise the regiment. The companies were promptly recruited in the counties of Estill, Owsley, Bath, Montgomery, Clark, Madison, Rockcastle and Powell; they assembled at Mt. Sterling in July, but before any organization had been effected, and before arms had been obtained, the Confederate forces, under Gen. Kirby Smith, came into the state. The fighting which took place at Big Hill and Richmond caused the unarmed men of the 14th to abandon their camp at Mt. Sterling, and for a time the organization was practically disbanded, though some of the men were held together, and fought against Morgan's cavalry, at Brooksville, Ky., when they retreated from Augusta, Ky., in September. The stay of the Confederates in Kentucky was brief. The battle of Perryville occurring October 8, 1862, they left the state. The 14th Ky. Men thereupon re-assembled at Mt. Sterling; four companies, A, B, C and D, were organized and mustered into service November 6th, and the regiment was completed in February, 1863, the other companies being mustered into service at Irvine February 13th. When the regiment abandoned camp at Mt. Sterling, as stated, some of its members were captured and paroled, but among the captured was Capt. Samuel McKee. He being a man of very decided convictions and known influence was detained as a prisoner, and sent to Libby prison, at Richmond, where he was held until April 30, 1864, when he was exchanged, and it is a singular fact, he was exchanged for Capt. Cal. Morgan, of Morgan's command, who was captured in 1863. The services of the 14th Ky. Were almost entirely in Eastern Kentucky. In December, 1862, the regiment under command of Lieut.-Col. J. W. Gallup was brigaded in the 2d Brigade, Col. J. C. Cochran, 3d Division, Gen. A. Baird, in the "Army in Kentucky." It was employed in scouting through the mountains, pursuing bands of raiders and generally for the protection of Eastern Kentucky. On the 3d of January, 1863, one hundred and fifty men of the 14th, under Maj. Stivers, dashed upon a band in Powell county, capturing their leader and eleven men, taking their horses, guns, etc. They belonged to the command of Gen. Humphrey Marshall.
In August, 1863, four companies of the 14th, under Maj. Robt. T. Williams, were at Mt. Sterling, being in Gen. Boyle's division, Maltby's brigade; in November, 1863, the 14th and 39th Ky. Were under Col. Gallup, in Eastern Kentucky. In that month four companies of the 14th escorted Gen. Foster to Cumberland Gap, when on his way to take command in East Tennessee. In December, 1863, five companies, under Maj. John C. Eversole, were in Gen. S. S. Fry's district, of Northern-Central Kentucky, he having at that time fifteen regiments under him. At the same time the remainder of the 14th, under Col. Orlando Brown, were in Eastern Kentucky, in the command of Col. Gallup.
The 14th was engaged in numerous skirmishes, and was engaged continuously in marching. Among its battles was the one at Dutton's Hill, in Pulaski county, near Somerset, March 30, 1863, when Confederate Gen. Pegram, with about two thousand five hundred, was attacked by the Union troops under Gen. Gilmore. After an engagement of several hours, Pegram was driven from the country and over Cumberland river, with considerable loss. The 14th also went on the East Tennessee campaign, under Gen. Burnside, in September, 1863, and participated in the hardships and dangers of that campaign. But the greater part of its service was in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky, on constant out-post duty. The 1st Battalion was mustered out of service September 6, 1863, and the remainder of the regiment in March, 1864.

In connection with the account of this regiment should be mentioned the report of Hon. Wm. H. Wadsworth, of Maysville, made to Gen. H. G. Wright, October 29, 1862. He states that October 16th he left Maysville and proceeded to Mt. Sterling with 381 men, recruited for the 14th Cavalry. On the way he ascertained that Gen. Humphrey Marshall was retreating from Kentucky on the road to Hazel Green. Mr. Wadsworth says he pursued this force and captured 150 prisoners. He scouted the country, he says, through the counties of Bath, Powell, Estill and Clark, capturing prisoners, horses and arms. He gives a deplorable account of the depredations of the enemy, and states that his district has sent six infantry regiments to the front, and had raised the 10th Cavalry which was the only regiment then left to protect that part of the state at that time. (War Records, Vol. 16, p. 1145)

Roster of the 14th (at another site)