can be no compromise on drill. Drill is mandatory. Without
it you become a danger to yourself, others around you, your
horse and yourself. We drill once a month and that is not
enough. Unfortunately, to our families, its just about right.
This hobby is both a learning process for you and one for
your horse. It is also a team effort. In battle, the original
cavalrymen trained, drilled and fought together as team. Individuality
could get you killed in battle. Each one of your fellow cavalrymen
not only had assigned tasks, you depended on them to do their
job and they depended on you to do yours. The 3rd Texas Cavalry
depends on you and you on them in very much the same way today.
In drill each must know what the other is doing, on the field
each must be where he should be in order for the other to
be where they should be. In a re-enactment, all must maneuver
together as we all depend on the other to accomplish our goal.
When it all comes together, there is no greater feeling than
the one obtain by working as a team and accomplishing a goal.
We do compete, but not with each other. We don`t care if one
of our troopers can out ride out shoot or out drill the other.
We do wish to out ride, out drill and out shoot the other
cavalry commands in our hobby. However if we don't, That's
ok too as by competing we tried our best and there is always
another day. We are cavalrymen.
use Wheeler's Cavalry manual for both our mounted and dismounted
drill. It is one of the few manuals that covers everything
from files to evolutions of the line for division size cavalry.
It use and study could become a life long conquest to the
cavalry enthusiast. We have been using it for almost fours
years now and are just scratching the surface. Its not available
anywhere. We had a friend copy an original and we copy it
for our members. We do not reproduce it for the hobby or individual.
We are not opposed to it, its just to expensive to have it
require our members to drill with us before they participate
with us in a reenactment. This allows both horse and rider
to become acquainted with the rest of us and us with them.
Its too late to find out your horse is gun shy when its spooked
at a dead gallop at a reenactment. Most horses can be taught
most all of the cavalry requirement to reenact in time. We
have many saying in the 3rd Texas Cavalry so here's another
one. "If doesn't feel safe then it's probable not...
so don't do it." We have had several new troopers back
off to the sidelines over the years because of this saying.
In fact, we almost insist that they not push themselves or
their horse until they are both ready. There is nothing to
prove. We are among friends, both four and two legged. We
don't want to get hurt and we sure don';t want our horse hurt.
It takes some riders several reenactments to get to where
they can participate with confidence. It takes some horses
quite awhile to grow accustom to the cannon fire, drums, flags,
pistol fire, saber clanging and thousands of yelling and screaming
many events this type of horsemanship is growing in popularity.
There are usually a few targets to shoot at, a saber course
and occasionally a few jumps. The rider is judged on accuracy
first and then speed. The good combination usually wins. There
are two or three classes. One for the novice and one for the
more experienced. Once is a while they'll have one for very
seasoned riders. These can really show off the rider and horse's
abilities and are reminiscent of the old original cavalry
competition. We in courage our cavalrymen to participate but
it is not mandatory.
recommend quality tack. Poor quality tack can get you hurt,
make the horse sore, and cost almost as much as quality tack.
Buy a reproduction saddle made on a " modern tree"
not an original tree that had been re-covered. You may save
a few dollars using the original tree, however, it will often
sore and gall the horse, which will cause the horse to reject
the saddle and possibly eject the rider. Buy your tack from
a sutler that uses harness leather impregnated with tallow
and mutton and guarantees his work.
suggest you buy the saddle, bridle and bit, halter lead strap,
rosettes, surcingle, saddle blanket, and linking strap in
one purchase. Yes, it is expensive, but they all have a purpose
and are used in conjunction with each other. The breast strap,
saddle bags, and crupper should be second. The carbine socket,
carbine sling, and pommel bags should be purchased as the
of the company horses will be located together on the picket
together whenever possible. All horses will have hay and access
to water. Each trooper will be responsible for his own horse.
Horses on the picket line will be feed together in a feed
bucket at the same time. If a feed bucket is not used the
horse will be removed by the owner and feed separately by
its owner at the same time as the other horses are being fed.
Camp will be set up as close to the picket line as possible
and a watch will be maintained at night. All halter ropes
or lead lines will be secured in a fashion that will secure
the horses but allow quick release. The picket line should
be high enough to allow the horses mouth to touch the ground
but no lower.
years ago, one of our members ran across a printed copy of
the "Prayer of A Horse" None of us know who wrote
it or how long its been around. It does reflect our view on
the matter. We have included it below as it just about sums
up our feelings.
1: Horses Comes First..