Saturday, May 25th, 2013
Ride and Demonstration Begins at 9:00 AM
Registration Deadline is May 17, 2013 
The Black Horse was initially formed in Fauquier County in 1859 as an independent volunteer cavalry company.  The unit guarded John Brown at Harper’s Ferry prior to his execution.  With the secession of Virginia from the United States, it was mustered into the service of the Commonwealth of Virginia in May of 1861.  At First Manassas, it initially guarded the commander but was later released to pursue the retreating Federals.  As part of a squadron composed of the Black Horse Troop, Captain Payne and the Chesterfield Troop, Captain Ball, under the overall command of Lt. Col. Thomas T. Munford, it pursued the Federals to Cub Run and captured ten rifled cannon, their caissons, and forty-six horses.   The company later became Company H of the 4th Virginia Cavalry Regiment.  The 4th Virginia Cavalry was comprised of companies from Prince William, Chesterfield, Madison, Culpeper, Powhatan, Goochland, Hanover, Warren, and Buckingham counties, some of the finest sons of the “Old Dominion”.
The roster of the Black Horse included a great many young men from the oldest and most established families of Fauquier County, in the heart of Virginia’s horse country. Many had honed their skills for years before the War in foxhunting and at the jousting tournaments held in Fauquier Springs, and rapidly adapted those skills to the needs of cavalry in wartime.  The Black Horse served from First Manassas to Appomattox Court House, participating in every major battle and campaign that involved the Army of Northern Virginia and never surrendering their colors. The unit produced three brigadier generals and numerous post-war elected officials.
The present Black Horse is a group of living historians established for the purpose of challenging their horses and each other in accurately reenacting and honoring cavalrymen of the past.  They attempt to equip and train as authentic, disciplined Confederate cavalry. The unit was founded in 1972 and currently has 30 members. The Black Horse participates in Civil War battle reenactments, living histories, presentations for the public, and films. Strong emphasis is placed on developing skills of a cavalryman, and members are expected to attend drills and hone their skills.
General Information
Upon arrival, treat yourself to coffee and doughnuts and meet the members of the infamous Black Horse Cavalry.  All riders must be in the saddle at 9 am and ready to ride.  Upon mounting, you will receive an historical overview  and then enjoy a brief demonstration that reflects the authenticity and dedication to the unit and its history.  You will then be divided into small groups based on your preferred ride speed and assigned a minimum of two reenactors per group.
The trail course may leave Manassas Battlefield Park in order to view the Sudley Ford crossing, unfinished railroad, and Sudley Springs crossing.  The speed of walk/trot/canter groups may be limited by weather, trail conditions and safety. This ride will include water crossings, narrow trails, and manuevering muddy banks in and out of Bull Run. Be prepared to be in the saddle for 2 to 3 hours.  Upon your return, lunch and refreshments await you.  This is a wonderful time to enjoy the company of the Black Horse Cavalry and your group companions.
Ample trailer parking available.  Parking attendant’s onsite for ease and coordination.  You may choose to bring your own water or there is an onsite water buffalo.  Portable rest room facilities are available.  For the safety of the horses, riders and volunteers, dogs are not permitted at the ride site and/or are not to be left in vehicles.
BES Members=$30, Non BES Members=$38, Daily Park Pass=$3 (required unless you have a yearly pass),
Addl. Lunches=$6, Coffee, doughnuts, one lunch and refreshments are included in your entry fee.
All riders must pre-register.  If after the deadline, please contact Dewey Brown at 540-341-8406, Marlys Shoup at 703-754-4981, or
The following must be sent with your registration entry:
·         Completed Registration Form (one for each rider).
·         Signed Waiver (one for each rider).
·         Copy of current negative Coggins (dated within 12 months of ride date)
·         Entry fee:  Cash or check made payable to the “BES” or “Battlefield Equestrian Society”
Please send all information and registration to:
Marlys Shoup
5050 Catharpin Road
Gainesville, VA  20155
  1. From I-66, take Exit 47 onto Route 234 North.
  2. Turn right at the second light (Stone House is on the corner) onto Route 29 North.
  3. Travel less than a mile and look for signs on the right.  Ride site is located between the Stone House and the Stone Bridge.
Inclement Weather Policy
The event may be cancelled if weather or trail conditions are considered to be hazardous.  If the event is cancelled, you will be notified by email (by phone if no email available) by 8:00 pm the evening prior to the ride.
If weather or field conditions prevent parking in the Manassas Park, an alternative parking site is available.  If the use of this site is necessary, you will be contacted by email (by phone if no email available) by 8:00 pm the evening prior to the ride.
Contact Information
For more information or if you have any questions, please contact Dewey Brown at 540-341-8406, Marlys Shoup at 703-754-4981, or