5th Cavalry Regiment was organized in June, 1862, using the 2nd Battalion Virginia
Cavalry as its nucleus. The men were from Petersburg and Fairfax, Gloucester, King and Queen,
Mathews, Randolph, and James City counties. It was assigned to W.H.F. Lee's, F. Lee's,
Lomax's, and Payne's Brigade, Army of Northern Virginia. The unit participated in the Seven
Days' Battles, the Second
Manassas and Maryland campaigns, and the conflicts at Fredericksburg, Brandy Station, Upperville, Gettysburg, Bristoe, and Mine Run. Later it was involved at The Wilderness and Cold Harbor, and in Early's Shenandoah
Valley operations. On November 8, 1864, it was consolidated with the 15th Virginia Cavalry
Regiment and redesignated the 5th Regiment Virginia Cavalry Consolidated. This command took
part in the defense of Petersburg and saw action around Appomattox. Only 150 men were engaged
at Gettysburg and 2 surrendered at Appomattox as most cut through the Federal lines and
disbanded. The field officers were Colonels Reuben B. Boston, H. Clay Pate, and Thomas L.
Rosser; Lieutenant Colonel James H. Allen; and Majors Beverly B. Douglas, John Eells, Cyrus
Harding, Jr., and John W. Puller.
2nd Cavalry Battalion was formed in May, 1862, with six companies and appears to have been a command of scouts. A month later four companies were added and the unit became the 5th Regiment Virginia Cavalry. Lieutenant Colonel H. Clay Pate was in command.