Introduction of us
Different standards
Rules of Engagement for Mounted Troops
The Challenge

Standing Orders

JR ROTC Explorer Post Boy Scouts of America
Annual Cavalry Camp June 18-22 1997

The JR ROTC Explorer Post is commanded by LTC David. H. Elder. We are pleased to call him one of our own in the 3rd Texas Cavalry where he serves as the Executive officer. Col. Elder has had the pleasure to teach and lead young people at Ball High School and he tell us that it is a high light in his life. We certainly can see why. We of the 3rd Texas Cavalry salute the participants of the 1st Annual Cavalry Camp.

The first Annual Cavalry Camp for the Ball High School JR ROTC Explorer Scouts was held at Brushy Creek Ranch in Hockley, Texas in June of 1997. The Camp was hosted by the 3rd Texas Cavalry, a Civil War Reenactment Group of Living Historians. This camp has come to be considered one of the most highly successful ventures of its kind in the area. Set in a period from 1960-1865 the young men and women of Ball High JR ROTC experienced what can only be described as lifetime experience. The camping was considered primitive as there was no amenities provided. Cooking was done on an open fire with period cast iron cookware. Menus were prepared, and the food was cooked solely by the participants. They ate as their ancestors would have but they ate well. Some of the staples that were enjoyed were, ham, sweet potatoes, black eyed peas, tortillas, eggs, corn, carrots, fruit, toast and even roasted chicken. Campaign cooking was tried and hardtack and beef jerky was not found to be too bad, if consumed in small quantities.

Horsemanship was a major part of the camp life. The BSA Horsemanship Merit badge was offered and completed by most. In addition to basic horsemanship, the young people learned, mounted drill, The Military Seat, mounted reconnaissance patrol and dismounted tactics. The care of the horse and tack was required and accompanied almost every outing as they all soon learned that the horse comes first. If you take care of your horse and equipment properly then the enjoyment and rewards can be exciting. Failure to do so can lead to misery for both horse and rider.

Charlotte Collins, of the Pony Club, instructed those that were ready in equitation that included small to medium jumps. Changing of leads, the walk, trot, canter and gallop was taught. And yes, there was an occasional unplanned dismount. That is part of it. Instruction was given by each of the 3rd Texas cavalry.

Camp life was taught in the style of yesteryear. The tents were authentic reproduction of the US Army issue of 1861. A fire was maintain through out the week and both camp fire a picket duty consisted of hourly watches throughout the night. For some, this was the first time they had ever slept by an open camp fire, on the ground with nothing but the stars above and a blanket for padding.

Historical instruction was part of the camp. There were demonstration from the 3rd Texas Cavalry troopers that covered everything from weapons firing demonstrations to care of historic weapons. Several period firearms were demonstrated including an original 17th century Brown Bess flintlock and 1860 Sharps cavalry carbine.

Fun was had by all and more importantly, skills were taught that exemplified the highest respect one can have for another. That of mutual respect and cooperation between one another and with horsemanship. Teamwork prevailed in all aspects of the camp. Lessons in life were learned that won't soon be forgot.